Monday, July 30, 2007

Courtship?!? Why?

If you're a homeschooler like I am, you've probably received the popular question, “Why aren’t you going to date/why don’t you date?” In response, I’d like to give some of my perspective on this issue.

First of all, many people haven’t ever heard of courtship. When you tell them you aren’t planning on dating, the first thing they think is, “How are you ever going to get married?!” So let me give a little insight into courtship. Courtship is designed with the thought that marriage is permanent, and so to find an appropriate mate requires discernment, with the guidance of parents. In courtship, you do not have a romantic relationship, but rather one with a high standard, godly and honorable.

There are many ways to “do” courtship, but there are a couple basic principles and stages. The first stage is, obviously, friendship. If a young man thinks a certain woman could be his future bride, he then discusses it with his parents and prays. If his parents agree and are at peace with it, he will get the father’s permission, concluding that marriage will be probable. One difference between dating and courtship is the father is involved in courtship. In most dating scenarios, it is boy and girl alone. Most of dating has to do with useless infatuations and “this person likes this person this week”. There is no long term commitment, especially if the participants are not ready for marriage! Back to courtship, in an ideal courtship situation, the families will have already known each other for a while, and perhaps go to the same church. With this, the father would have a pretty good idea of what the man’s beliefs are, his character, and his relationship with his parents and siblings. Usually the father will have questions to ask the young man about theology and doctrine, his life goals, and other things. For instance, if the man was planning on being a missionary in another country and the woman he wants to court doesn’t want to leave the state, there would be a problem. After a period of months of examination and determining God’s will, and both agree that it is God’s will for their lives, they decide to marry. This is called the engagement/betrothal stage.

These are my thoughts on courtship. Of course, each and every courtship is unique. There will be differences in every courtship story you hear. I personally have not reached the age to court, so what I know is what we’ve learned and what my family thinks will work. In conclusion, I would like to add a section from a book I highly recommend. It is called, So Much More, by Anna Sofia & Elizabeth Botkin.

How should a girl relate to young men? The Botkin girls respond, “When in the presence of young men, we should act as though our husbands might be in the room watching us. We should pray that no young men ever rob us of feelings we are saving for our husbands, and in the same way, we must not defraud other young men of what belongs to their wives, because God has chosen wives for them, too. It is almost as though they are already married, and this fact should affect the way we treat them, so that they will think of us “as sisters, with all purity” (2 Timothy 5:2).

John W. Thompson explains his views why dating makes this difficult: Dating, even Christian dating, generally results in a series of emotional attachment or bonds with different dating partners. To express this language of romance, a young woman gives a piece of her heart to a young man when she becomes emotionally involved with him. By the time she meets the man she will marry, she will have only a fragment of her heart left to give. Even without going out on a date, a young woman can give pieces of her heart to several young men during her youth, so that by the time she marries, she is no longer a one-man woman (1 Tim. 5:9) Yet Paul’s analogy of Christ and the church in 2 Corinthians 11:2-3 explains that a pure maiden saves her love for one man only, not just physically but emotionally too. The goal is not just physical purity but emotional purity--only one romance for life!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Here are some verses I read in my Quiet Time this morning that I thought I’d share: “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.” 1 Corinthians 9:24-25

The verse that talks about strict training has to do with self-control. Self-control, or discipline, is crucial to victory. Without it, the runners could not endure the race.

“Run in such a way as to get the prize.” Isn’t that a neat verse? We should be pressing towards the goal, forgetting what is behind, and straining towards what is ahead, as it says in Philippians 3:13-14. What is the goal? Christlikeness! We should be continually becoming more like Christ. Of course, this can only happen through our diligence in studying His Word, praying and having a relationship with Him, and obediently following His commands.

Monday, July 23, 2007

The Doctrine of Biblical Genders

I can’t think of much to write now, so I thought I would post an essay I wrote in school this past year. You can probably determine my worldview from it. :) My Mom never checked/edited it, so there may be some things that don’t make sense. If so, you can inform me...
I will probably add things like this, and things I’ve read from other people, to my blog. I enjoy them, and others might too!



THE DOCTRINE OF BIBLICAL GENDERS ~by Allison

When asked to define the equality of men and women, Egalitarianism would say- “Men and women are equal in all aspects. There’s no real difference between them”. Complementarianism would say- “Males and females are equal before God. But they both have distinct gifts, natures, and roles”. The roles of men and women are a big deal in our culture today. Many women have bought into the lies of feminism, wanting to do everything themselves, including taking on jobs. Generally, we have lost what the biblical roles of males and females are.

The Bible says that men and women are created equal, and in the image of God. But where do we draw the line when we say “equal”? God ordained the unique roles of men and women differently, with a purpose and plan in mind. For instance, a woman is to be submissive to her husband. Jesus best demonstrates this as he perfectly submits to the Father.

God created the roles of male and females. Egalitarians argue that the Bible’s teachings were cultural. They try to explain away 1 Timothy 2, which says women can not teach over men, by saying that the women in that century were not well educated, so they could not teach over men. However, Paul firmly states that his rules are directly based on the word of God. (1 Corinthians 14:33-38) He prohibits women from teaching over men because of the created order.

So what are the biblical roles of men and women? Ephesians 5:22-23 says, “Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.” Titus 2:3-5 says, “Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.” 1 Peter 3:7 states, “Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.” 1 Timothy 2:-15 also says, “A woman should learn quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. But women will be saved through childbearing- if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety.”

The biblical view of life, as well as male and female roles is counter-cultural. Choosing God’s way will be a model to all around you. People will notice you are different. Philippians 2:15 tells us not to argue and complain so we can “become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you will shine like stars in the universe.” If your roles are biblical, you will shine like stars, and glorify God.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

My First Posting

Hello everyone!
This is my very first posting on my blog “Letter from Christ”, and I’m excited! After studying and preparation, I think I’ve finally figured this out and am ready. As the oldest of five, a lot of my postings will have to do with my family. I would also like this blog to be an encouragement to every reader. For every believer is a Letter from Christ. I picked this name because I pray God will use me through this blog; that I would represent Him in a way that gives Him all the glory. I pray you will be blessed by this blog too, and that you would find nothing that is dishonoring to God. To Him be the glory forever!