Online Dating is a great way to meet and start relationship with other Christian singles. But is online dating ok with God? Is online dating good for Christian singles who are looking for a Christian mate, including to start a family? Dr. Jim shows how the Internet can be a great tool (or a bad one) for those looking to meet true love online.
Does the Bible approve of online dating?
Does God approve of one using online dating to try to find a mate? Does He want us to take the initiative in finding someone?
The modern world is a very interesting one to say the least. Several years ago we thought that technology would make our lives easier and we would have more spare time to kick back and enjoy life. It seems to me that with each ‘enhancement’ that technology has brought to our lives, it has brought a new set of circumstances and challenges.
“The Internet and online dating are not a sin, it is how we use them.”
The Internet is a very recent phenomenon. The rapid growth of the Internet has taken place mostly in the last fifteen years. It is a marvelous invention and has allowed businesses and individuals to connect in ways that were not thought of before.
There are some Christians who are very uncomfortable with the thought of using the Internet to find a date. I see a parallel between those who think, ‘Money is the root of all evil’ and those who think that the Internet is an evil choice. Money is not evil in itself and the Bible does not use those words. 1Timothy 6:10 says, ‘For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil.’ Money is not the problem but how we use it. The Internet or online dating are not a sin, it is how we use them.
Primary instructions from the Bible
Since the Internet was not present during the times that the Bible was written there is no instruction specifically relating to it. There are two primary instructions that do apply that are directly from the Bible:
“Do not forget God in the process”
1Cor. 10:31 ‘So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.’
Matt. 7:12 ‘So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.’
If these two verses were followed, there would be a lot less turmoil in building relationships. These verses apply whether one is relating in person or using the Internet. In addition to these verses, I think that the following considerations should be taken into account when one chooses to use the Internet to connect with others:
- Start with accountability. Develop a deep buddy system with one or two other Christians of your own gender. Share with them how you are approaching the Internet and keep them informed on your contacts. (You can do this for them too.) This will help you keep your perspective.
- Do not forget God in the process. God’s Spirit should go before us in all situations of life. Ask Him to guide you to both draw and make the best connections.
- Do not place all your expectations on the Internet for meeting others. Continue to attend church, non-profit organizations and other places that are healthy places to meet others.
- One should always get as healthy as they can in all areas of their life before they consider trying to find a relationship.
- Keep your profile and picture honest and true as well as your communication with others. Do not allow your emotions to get ahead of a healthy process. Place NO expectations for the potential of any relationship until after you have a chance to meet in person.
- Limit the amount of time you spend in this activity so that it does not take over your life.
Please see our previous post about How to keep your expectations in check.
Including God in the process.
I find nothing wrong with a reasonable and healthy use of the Internet to meet others. Do not isolate yourself and hide what you are doing. It can become a temptation to become something you are not or do some things that you would not normally do.
If one includes God in the process, has the accountability of others and keeps their expectations in check, the opportunity offered by the Internet will be maximized. It is not a magic box and do not place unreasonable expectations on this approach.
“It is not a magic box and do not place unreasonable expectations on this approach”
Author of “Guide to Successful Online Christian Dating”