Average suggested dating time before marriage
I’ve arrived at this conclusion by thinking through a number of biblical principles.
One of our bedrock governing principles in biblical dating — and in how we treat our brothers and sisters in Christ generally — is not to “defraud” our single brothers and sisters by implying a greater level of commitment between us and them than actually exists (see 1 Thessalonians 4:6).
Over time, maybe you take some of the same classes, live near one another, etc.
In that context, living with the desires I’ve just described, how likely do you think it is that over the course of two or three or four years — some couples date over most of their college years — you will be able to maintain enough emotional discipline and distance to avoid acting emotionally and relationally “married”?
Where a relationship is shorter, accountability stronger, and the level of temptation, and the likelihood of sin, goes down.
To put it simply, “not acting married before you’re married,” gets exponentially more difficult the longer a pre-marital relationship persists.
PART 6: Growing in Intimacy » In matters of dating or courtship, I generally recommend that people either get married or break up within a year or so of beginning a dating relationship.
As your general comfort level around each other rises, that momentum grows even more. We’ll assume, per another clear principle from Scripture, that both members of our college couple are Christians.Let me try to deal very briefly with the most popular responses I get to this argument — especially from college students.I think it does, even if the physical circumstances are different.I’ve spoken to numerous “long-dating” couples, in college and beyond, who other than living together, could do little to intertwine their lives any more than they already are.They see each other every day, are with each other’s families every holiday (and often know their partner’s family as well as any son or daughter-in-law does), they travel together, spend most of their non-working (or studying) time together, they daily confide in one another (and maybe one another), and are without doubt, closer emotionally with one another than with anyone else on the planet.