ABOUT THE EPISODE
Tired of navigating the confusing world of sexual boundaries within Christian dating relationships?
We’re here to help you redefine these boundaries as markers of holiness, focusing on maintaining sacredness and godliness according to God’s intentions.
Join us as we dive into Paul’s words in 1 Thessalonians 4:3-6 and discuss how to approach dating relationships with a heart for protecting our future spouse, even if our current relationship doesn’t work out.
We’ll share insights on having conversations about maintaining holiness within dating relationships, and understanding that not every partnership will lead to marriage.
Learn how to think beyond boundaries and focus on internal convictions, fostering a deeper connection with God and your partner. Ready to invite God into your dating life and strive for holiness and sacredness in your love journey?
Don’t miss this eye-opening episode on redefining sexual boundaries in Christian dating.
A boundary is defined as the line that marks the limits of a particular area. The problem is in dating relationships that line can move a lot.
Consider Markers of Holiness as an approach to a God honoring relationship. The Bible defines holiness as something sacred or Godly. How can you take that and apply it to your dating relationship?
Boundaries can be subjective and get blurry with temptation. Make the effort to have the conversation about Markers for Holiness with your partner BEFORE physical intimacy. At the point of sexual arousal, your brain may not have the ability to make a different choice.
It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control your own body in a way that is holy and honorable, not in passionate lust like the pagans, who do not know God; and that in this matter no one should wrong or take advantage of a brother or sister1 Thessalonians 4:3-6
Transcription: A Look Beyond Sexual Boundaries
As if boundaries aren’t hard enough, today we’re talking about sexual boundaries within Christian dating relationships. I’m sure a lot of people right away are expecting all the shoulds and the should nots while dating, and especially because the messages from the church and from the world can be really confusing. But today, this is Kyle we’re talking about. This is regeneration ministries we’re talking about. This is Jesus we’re talking about. So we’re here to talk about sexual boundaries and a unique change of perspective. All that being said, step one let’s define sexual boundaries.
So if you think about boundary, the boundary is basically described as, or defined as, a line that marks the limits of a particular area. So when you think about boundaries, what you think about is okay, i can go up to a certain point, and then this is where I have to stop. I can’t go beyond this, right, that’s what the boundary is supposed to be. The problem is, in dating relationships, that line can move a lot For a lot of reasons, right. And so you can say, well, is this line okay? And okay, i can go here and stop. There will go this line, and then I stop. So it’s not clear. It’s very subjective, based on the people involved. So here’s what I like to do I want to get rid of the word boundaries, all right, okay, we’re going to throw that out and suggest something very different, and I think this is more aligned with what God is after when he is looking to see what God honoring relationships look like, and so I think we should call it markers of holiness.
Hey, i like that The lines are confining. Okay, so tell me why. what is a marker of holiness then?
So if we’re talking about markers of holiness. You got to understand what holiness is Right. So when you think about how the Bible defines holiness, it’s something sacred or something godly, Okay. So now, if you think about that, okay, how do I then take that and apply it to a dating relationship? So you have to be willing to ask yourself some questions. You have to be willing to say, okay, is what I’m thinking about doing with my dating partner? is it sacred and is it godly, based on God’s definitions? That’s what you got to think about.
That’s a huge shift right there It is It is.
I think we always think about what can I, can or, like you said, should or shouldn’t do, what can I, can’t or can’t do. We always think of it that terms. We never shift the perspective up to God and say what does God see as holy and sacred? And so how do we maintain holiness and sacredness within our dating relationship?
Okay, so what else should we be thinking about?
So it is another thing. So in always thinking about, okay, is it okay to do this? I shouldn’t do this, i don’t think we think about the fact that not every dating relationship is going to end in marriage, right, it’s. You know, things happen, things don’t work out. So what you have to think about is how am I protecting what belongs to my future spouse? Because you can step into sin. And what you don’t think about is, oh, but how is this a sin against my future spouse? And I think, first, thessalonians, in chapter four, verses three through six, paul kind of just talks about this. Right, he said it is God’s will that you should be sanctified, that you should avoid sexual immorality Okay, well, we all know that right, that each of you should learn to control your own body in a way that is holy and honorable, not impassionate lust like the pagans do, who do not know God, and that in this matter, no one should wrong or take advantage of their brother or sister. And so that it means that I have to protect what belongs to my future spouse. And I think you have to be okay with having conversations, like you know, i think, because the whole boundary thing can be subjective, you can assume okay, here’s this great Christian person I’m dating And you think, okay, so our ideas about boundaries have got to be the same. But you might find they’re not, and so are you willing to have this conversation about? okay, how are we going to make sure that our relationship is holy? And that’s a whole different concept than what can we do or what can’t we do.
Yeah, right, oh, i like that. Yeah, and I like that conversation, because the marker of holiness for those who do know God, not the ones who do not know God. For the ones who do know God is almost like speaking into your identity. So it’s affirming of yourself and maintaining your integrity And it’s affirming of your future spouse, whether this person is that person or not, but maintaining their integrity also.
Yeah, and I think too. Look, you cannot make a sound decision if you’ve already gone too far. It’s hard to your brain, does not work like it should. When you’re at the point of sexual arousal, you don’t have even the ability to make a different choice, because typically that portion of your brain actually starts to shut down so that you don’t have the ability to make the kind of good choice to say, oh, like, we don’t need to go beyond this, and so why not have the conversation beforehand so that you’re? I think some people get into a relationship and they go gosh, i didn’t think he was gonna expect me to do this, or he was okay with this, and so then you might be wounded and feel taken advantage of Because your assumption about what your dating partner had, the expectations, were different, and so I think that’s really important And that requires maturity and responsibility for a good relationship.
You know what I love about this too. But, kyle, i’m excited because I’m just thinking about the idea of these lines and the shoulds and should nots can become the temptation then to sneak around, to cross over, to jump right over, for whatever the motivation. But these markers of holiness are internal, they’re not out there. They’re not out there, it’s inside.
And I think because look, you can go online and probably put in there okay, what are the boundaries for dating, sexual boundaries for dating, And you can get everything You’re gonna get. some people are gonna say don’t even hold hands. Some of them will say, you know what, You can have oral sex and you’ll be fine. So you’re gonna get all of these different answers. And so when you have the internal conviction of this, is more about honoring God and what he wants, as opposed to what I can or can’t do.
Yeah Well, I love the idea of praying through this for the women that I know who are single, who are dating that internal conviction to be able to pray because it is so personal. It is personal And this is part of who God is. And this is what’s so exciting about exploring our sexuality with Jesus is that it’s beyond a line, it’s beyond a list of dos and don’ts. Yes, this is much bigger. It is. There’s a lot more freedom in considering it this way It is, and just think about this like how awesome is it to when you’re not thinking just of yourself either.
you’re thinking, how am I gonna honor the person I’m dating? Like that’s huge Cause. you know we always think about ourselves and what the benefit is for us in the dating relationship. But what about you thinking first? you know what? I wanna make sure that I honor the person I’m dating, mm-hmm.
Yeah, this is a marker of holiness. You’re a real stinker coming up with this one, aren’t you? I like this so much.
Yeah, and I think too. What happens also is if the relationship doesn’t work out for whatever reason you don’t walk away like, okay, so you might be hurt, that it’s, it’s it, it terminated, but you don’t feel like you’ve given a part of yourself to a person that you shouldn’t have. You don’t start to feel guilt and shame around that. You can walk away going you know what, like at least I honored this person in this relationship, I honored myself, and so I know that God is pleased with that, and then you can walk away with so much more worth for yourself and value for yourself because you chose to honor God in this way in this dating relationship.
And we’re not saying you need five markers of holiness before you enter a relationship. We’re not even doing that. This is something to be praying through. But let’s, what are some questions that maybe we can pray through, or a practical idea of what a marker of holiness looks like and sounds like to offer as like a guidepost for? oh okay, that’s a good example.
Yeah, i think one of the things to kind of ponder and say, okay, a marker of holiness for me would be I’m not going to do anything that’s going to bring my partner to a place of sexual arousal, right, i’m not gonna purposely do that so that I am honoring who he or she is. I think that’s one practical way.
I think maybe some other ways are what does it mean Like again having conversation with this other individual to be able to say, hey, what does holiness look like? You know? what does it mean to be holy? And I think there’s some caution in that, like we’re not trying to make, like putting these kind of rules that are that you can’t attain. Sometimes you have these rules that you set out that you can’t. You don’t want to make something that’s not attainable, but you want to be able to say what does really for me? what does holiness look like? Does it mean? it might even mean for you? you might say you know what? Maybe it means I’m more conscious of the way I dress. That might not be for everybody. Yeah, right, yeah, but maybe that’s what you get convicted about. Maybe also, it means that you’re not feeding yourself stuff that will cause you to want to engage in other behavior. Mm-hmm. Right, you know, are you? what kind of stuff are you looking at? What kind of things are you reading? What kind of? you know? are you sitting around listening to the love songs all the time they talk about baby, i love you and I want to be with you. Unless you know, it’s been a night together.
Yes, they’ll get you every time. Yeah, it’s been a night together.
Songs, right, Right right, right, right, you know. So I think you have to look at the whole of your life in order to really set what your markers are, because they go beyond just this relationship here And I think when you have those markers, those markers set in other areas of your life that one doesn’t be, it’s not so hard, yeah, yeah, and you know what. You’ll be okay, believe it or not. You’ll be okay with telling somebody to kick rocks if they need to.
Mm, this is true, right, this is true, cause you don’t like.
No, i’m not doing that.
Right, and you’ll be okay with that.
This is so good because you’re a single woman. I’m a married woman. regardless, the markers of holiness are true for both of us, Absolutely, And necessary for both of us. They are Because God is after my heart.
God is after your heart.
Absolutely, absolutely. What does holiness look like? Have the conversation. Those are two really good, i mean cause, even if you’re in the midst of a relationship and you’re like, ooh, maybe something’s not setting right, well then, maybe pray into that. Yeah, invite the Lord into that.
Yeah, you’re okay And know like your know, your value in your worth is not based on whether this person stays or goes.
Did you hear that? Did you hear that?
It’s not based on whether they stay or go, because God will honor you. If the person says, okay, i can’t do that, peace be with you. Let them go And know that God has something better for you, whatever that looks like, and know that he’s gonna honor you in that.