(Please be sure to read part 1 and part 2...)
In 1 Corinthians 7:32b-34 we see,
“…He that is unmarried careth for the things
that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord:
But he that is married careth for the things
that are of the world, how he may please his wife.
There is difference also between a wife and a virgin.
The unmarried woman careth for the things of the Lord,
that she may be holy both in body and in spirit:
but she that is married careth for the things of the world,
how she may please her husband.”
Paul says how the married person needs to please their spouse,
but the single one is free to serve the Lord.
In our culture, we’ve completely turned that around!
Those who are unmarried have a great pressure
to be ‘on the make’, but once they get married
they can settle down and please the Lord.
We have it turned around!
God says (Ecc.12:1)
“Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth…”
God has a better way!
I’ve had many people say, “If you don’t date,
how are you going to know if that person is God’s will?”
First of all, I fully believe that God
speaks to us in a still small voice.
Also, I believe the Lord has a different way for each person.
But He will let a person know (ideally the young man),
with the help and guidance of parents.
Parental involvement is very important!
You can tell of a person’s character without dating…
through observing, maybe even someone suggesting;
I believe God has a special way of letting
each person know that what is His will!
Pray with your parents
if a specific person has caught your attention.
And if all 3-
the young person (ideally the young man),
the father, and mother-
really feel the Lord speaking and saying “that’s the one”;
and there is no doubt of it being God’s will,
then the young man should go to the lady’s parents.
They should pray about it and if they have every assurance
of it being God’s will, then they let the lady know.
She then needs to pray about it
and feel, without a doubt, it’s God’s perfect will.
Prayer is the main tool here while searching out God’s will!
In this way, 6 people will be hearing from God
and seeking His will:
And if one of them doesn’t feel it’s right,
it may not be God’s will… or His timing.
God WILL reveal it to them if it is His perfect will!
After coming to the conclusion that 2 people are
God’s perfect will for each other,
then social interaction can take place!
They need to commit to being married
before really ‘getting to know each other’.
Some say now they can ‘date’…
that would still be giving occasion to the flesh.
They’re not married, so they have no right to act like they are!
The other concern people have is love.
People say, “You marry the one you love.”
You love the one you marry! Love is a choice!
It’s not an ‘ooey gooey’ feeling (as my pastor says!);
it isn’t uncontrollable- you choose to love someone!
The expression “fell in love” is absurd!
It seems to indicate you fall in love like you fall into a ditch!
You can just as easily fall out!
No, you don’t accidentally love someone!
You choose to love that person!
If we are truly seeking God and are serving Him in His will,
He will bless us and let us know who His chosen spouse is for us.
Just as He created Eve especially for Adam,
He has created a partner especially for each person today-
if we’re willing to seek it and submit to His will.
After all, the whole design of marriage was for
a picture of the church’s relationship with Christ.
The Lord says, continually, He has betrothed the church to Him.
We need to make sure we, personally, have a deep and sincere
relationship with Christ before we move to marriage.
Notice also, that God the Father betrothed Christ to the church.
(He, also, uses the word ‘espoused’ sometimes)
This, in itself, clearly states that God’s will and way is betrothal-
He never once mentions dating or courtship!
And if an exhaustive study was to be done,
it would prove that dating is a sin...
in every way it is NOT God’s will!
If only people were more willing to open their eyes!
So many people harden their hearts to such an idea
because it may not be what they want or what they think.
But with all that God refers to in romantic relationships,
if one were to be completely open and willing to submit to God,
they would see how God really looks
at the world’s idea of dating.
Please note this is not just my opinion-
nor was it, I admit, my first choice or desire
when I first studied it,
but I am very thankful the Lord really softened my heart
and opened my eyes on the subject!
And I know now that I’m not the only one!
There are, I know for a fact, many Christians who believe this…
but many more who don’t.
Now I’m not at all saying that God can’t use dating
to bring His will of people together-
but I do believe that dating is His permissive will
and, certainly, not His perfect will in marriage.
In His Goodness, He works with what we give Him,
even if we’re holding back more.
But wouldn’t it be so precious to Him (and us)
if we surrendered that area as well
and really trusted Him to bring our marriage about,
not only with His chosen person,
but His time and way of bringing it about?
I challenge you today, to risk the criticism and the sacrifice,
by being totally commited to
God’s absolute best and perfect will in this area.
I know from experience that people
will mock, criticize, and disagree;
friends, family, even other Christians and church members,
but there comes a great peace in knowing that you are in
God's perfect will and are resting and trusting in Him!
And the rewards will be eternal,
as well as wonderful here on earth!
“And this I speak for your own profit;
not that I may cast a snare upon you,
but for that which is comely,
and that ye may attend upon the Lord without distraction.”
1 Corinthians 7:35