Here is an excerpt of a paper on dating I recently completed. This particular section is by far the most important concept that I laid forth. I’ll post it in six different posts because of its length.
The centrality of the Gospel in a Biblical dating relationship can be demonstrated and practiced in an innumerable ways, as every Christian should be open to every aspect of their lives to increasing exposure and delight of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Thus, the following examples should be seen as just a primer, as each couple will have to have the Gospel compel their relationship in hundreds of unique ways that cannot possibly be broached at this time.
1. First, in multiple greetings of Paul’s letters (Romans, 1 and 2 Corinthians, Philippians, etc.) he addresses his audience as “brothers,” which is adelphoi in the Greek. Adelphoi refers to siblings in a family, particularly God’s family. As it says in 1 John 3:1 “See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.” As Christians we are all now children of God with one Father. “Everyone who loves the Father loves whoever has been born of him” (1 John 5:1).
Thus, as the Gospel has brought every Christian into the family of God who were by nature objects of wrath (Eph. 2:3), we all are to treat younger men as brothers and younger women as sisters in all purity (1 Tim. 5:1-2), as singles need to particularly renew and remember such a reality.
The Gospel has brought us into the family, as it is of primary importance (1 Cor. 15:3), it is the most significant common factor that courting couples share. They need to be delighting in it in increasing measures as it should be their common delight and a continued topic of discussion.
Basically, the Gospel should be the most important affinity that a couple shares and that sustains the relationship. If the relationship is built upon foundationally anything less than the rock of Christ, than it would be utter folly to think that the relationship will be able to successfully withstand the sinfulness of the other person and the conflicts of life.