We've come together on this piece to hopefully bless, edify and implore other believers to assess their current courtships, implement principles prior to entering into one, and lastly, to move from desiring to fit into the ideals of men and look to what is taught in the Word of God.
Roxanne: What is your definition of biblical courtship?
Rowina: Different people define biblical courtship in different ways.
In my dealings with the topic biblical courtship, I have found that, to my disappointment and often discouragement, there seems to be a lot of opinion but regrettably, a real lack of clarity.
Reading many articles, talking with other believers, and being a believer who is currently in a courtship myself, I have found myself wrestling vigorously with the different ideologies which are flying about in answer to the following question: How do we, as followers of Jesus Christ, engage in courtship in a biblical way, a way in which honours and glorifies God, leaving both parties obedient to the Word?
I was fortunate enough to have an interesting conversation with a woman by the name of Rowina Seidler, who has written many articles reflecting on this very issue.
She has recently been married and I found myself extremely blessed by the insight she gave into her experiences and her standpoint on how believers should participate in courtship in a biblical manner, beautifully validated by particular Scriptures.
Roxanne: That is an interesting definition and one that draws on Scriptures such as 1 Timothy 5:1-2, "Rebuke not an elder, but entreat him as a father, and the younger men as brethren; the elder women as mothers; the younger as sisters with all purity." From your previous articles, I can see that you have been trying to correct a particular kind of relationship that you feel is prominent in the church.
On the basis of the above definition, what would you say the difference is between biblical courtship and what you are seeing in the church today?
Rowina: In the church today most people seem to do a modified version of the world's boyfriend/girlfriend relationship, the only real modification being no sex.
The man and woman attempt to not stir up each other's love prematurely and thus do not act like a couple or as if they belong to each other.
The man treats the woman as a sister in all purity.