By Eddie Kaufholz, Relevant Magazine
July 28, 2014| 5:00 pm
I’m dating a woman and I really like her. However, she’s not a Christian, but I am. She’s an incredible person who teaches me so much and is kind and everything you’d hope for in a mate, but she just doesn’t buy into Jesus. So here’s the question, what do you make of a Christian dating a non-Christian?
Henry, my man. I’m happy you’re happy in this relationship. And before you start getting all nervous that I’m about to drop the axe on this sweet thing you’ve got going, know that I’m not about to tell you to break up immediately. Instead, I’m going to give you three different perspectives: “Yes, date her!” “No, you can’t!” and my own perspective.
Perspective 1: Yes, date her!
Can a Christian and a non-Christian date, fall in love, be genuinely happy, get married and do great things for the world? Of course! There are countless follower/non-follower relationships that would be viewed as phenomenal by any standard.
Additionally, it is possible for you to follow Jesus and bear fruit throughout your life even if your dating relationship isn’t rooted in Christ. And because the Bible doesn’t specifically warn against dating a non-believer (more on this later), you’re OK in regard to a sinful behavior that needs to be avoided.
Perspective 2: No, don’t date her!
Henry, dating a non-believer is hard road. Now, I’m not saying this because inherent in her unbelief is some immoral compass that will lead you down a path of sin and debauchery. That’s not fair to her. I’m sure she’s perfectly lovely. But somewhere, at some point, you’re going to realize that you are building a life on two different foundations.
As a Christian, your life is built on a desire to trust and follow Jesus to the ends of the earth. For her, well, I don’t know what her foundation is—and maybe she doesn’t either. But if you two are doing this thing together, there’s got to be a common sense of purpose and mission. Without that, you spin your wheels alone and eventually get tired of explaining how you feel God’s calling on your life. You disengage with God—not because you don’t love God, but because you deeply love this woman and are having to make concessions in order to speak a common language.
People are going to try and point to 2 Corinthians 6:14 as Biblical proof that you shouldn’t date an unbeliever.
“Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?”
In truth, making this verse about not being in a romantic relationship with a non-believer isn’t a good interpretation of what Paul was really getting at when he wrote these words. We really want this verse (or any verse) to be all about dating and marriage to a non-Christian because it would make this whole conversation a lot easier.
But because there isn’t a clear Biblical mandate, and because there is wisdom in both of the aforementioned “Yes!” and “No!” camps, you’ve got to do something to break the stalemate: intensely, seriously, pray.
Maybe God has you right where He wants you and this relationship is about pulling her into the Kingdom, instead of drawing you away from God. I’ve seen MANY couples who’ve been in this position and God has used their love for each other to alter the trajectory of eternity. In fact, I baptized a man last weekend whose wife had been praying for him for 15 years—15 years!
-So what is the consensus? Should a Christian date an Unbeliever? You can find out the answer on the Singles Talk Show Call!
*Click the link below to listen*