There are no verses in the Bible that talk about dating—it wasn’t even in the first century’s vocabulary yet. But that doesn’t mean we should discount Scripture completely when it comes to this topic. Dating is a relationship—something that the Bible does talk about frequently. There are many principles we can apply simply by looking at how we should treat other people.
When you’re considering whether or not to date someone, be honest with yourself about what your motives are. The Bible says to do “nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves” (Philippians 2:3). There are ways to glorify God in a dating relationship, but if you are doing it to fulfill physical needs or because you’re insecure, chances are you are not in a healthy place to start a relationship. Marriage is a covenant based out of giving and selflessness, both of which we should exercise in our dating relationships now.
It’s also important that we honor our boyfriend or girlfriend physically as well. The Bible is pretty clear about its stance on sex before marriage: “Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a man commits are outside his body, but he who sins sexually sins against his own body. Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body” (1 Corinthians 6:18-20).
As a Christian the goal of any relationship, including dating, should be to love God and love others (Matthew 22:36-40). When God is excluded from this it results in selfish, unhealthy relationships. But in Christ we know that God’s best is the only thing that truly satisfies.