Courtship Now: Courtship during the College Years
Do they just do things in groups when some young man asks for a date? have practiced family-centered courtship, we are living in a different time with many . for their permission to date their daughter? Does it take guts on his part? You bet! Kimberly Hahn has an excellent tape series entitled: Courtship and Dating: A. Candice Gage. Candice Gage is a freelance writer who wrestles daily with what it means to love God and love others well. Success for her means being the best. In this inspiring presentation, Kimberly Hahn, wife of Dr. Scott Hahn, shares of purity 4) comparison of dating with borrowing a car and suggesting courtship.
Wondering why you should choose it? Read the Padgetts' story for some straight talk about sex and the truth that will set you free to discover friendship, affection and the self-discipline needed for a firm foundation for marriage.
Passion and Purity Rules for Christian Singles! She gives direction in such areas as singleness or marriage, putting God's desires ahead of personal desires, what men look for in a woman, virginity and chastity and the man's role in relationships. Not catholic, but strongly biblical. Finding Life-long Love In A Hook-up World - Jennifer Roback Morse A book on the nature and meaning of sex and marriage for the ordinary person who wants to get married and stay married.
A proper understanding of marriage and sexuality are the remedy for the contemporary social ills of casual sex, cohabitation, divorce and heartbreak. The modern world completely misunderstands the meaning of human sexuality, and has created a culture in which it is socially acceptable to use people "hook-up" is widely used in America to mean a casual sexual encounter. Yet true love is about self-giving, not the sexual revolution's fraudulent promise of freedom. A delightful book on the importance of marriage, the problems with consumer sex written by an economist!
Great for couple contemplating or already married. Although the foreword is by Chuck Colson thus non-CatholicMorse lays out fairly Catholic values about sex and chastity, while writing a particularly religious book. Date or Soul Mate?: Warren writes solely from a secular perspective, but is very close to Catholic teaching in the area of sexuality and cohabitation. Tired of dating one wrong person after another? Learn how to identify the person of your dreams quickly in 2 dates or less so you don't waste time with dead-ends.
This book can help reduce confusion and heartache and teach you how to become maximally attractive to a prospective spouse.
It helps one to gain important self knowledge that is the first step in the process of mate selection. All five of those books comprise the law of Moses. But what is so curious about the law of Moses from our perspective is that it begins with the Genesis narrative. It doesn't begin with the ten commandments.
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It doesn't begin with all these ordinances and statutes. Instead it begins with stories. Because God knows that the best way to teach people righteousness is not simply giving them a list of do's and don'ts, but showing them in a real-life history what happens when you violate the divine commandments, especially in the realm of marriage and sexuality and family life.
Why is this area so important? It goes back to the very beginning of Genesis when God created man in His own image and likeness. He created man, male and female, and the first utterance from God to man, male and female, is this blessing and then this command to be fruitful and multiply.
But God would not be commanding man, male and female, to be fruitful and multiply unless they were married. Marriage, you see, is a divine institution in which man finds himself at creation. Man, male and female, are created in the image and likeness of God by being created in the covenant relationship of marriage. That is the primordial image of God, and God says, "Be fruitful and multiply. Let the two become one," and they discovered in this act of marriage how the oneness is more than just a fleeting emotion.
It's more than just a physical sensation, it becomes a real fact. It becomes a metaphysical reality because when the two become one, nine months later you've got to give that "one" a name, and that child embodies the oneness that the two became--to show those two that God has designed their oneness to be permanent, to be exclusive, to be life-giving and therefore, to be faithful. So from the beginning of Genesis apart from any statutes or ordinances, do's and don'ts, God is telling the story of His own family and how He created His family to reflect himself because our God, in the Blessed Trinity, is an eternal family.
So when the two become one and then become three, their oneness is deepened. And so the three are even more one than when they were first created in marriage. That is the mystery of marriage from the very beginning.6 IMPORTANT BOUNDARIES TO SET - Courtship Class 3
But then this mystery is distorted and torn apart, ripped to shreds, by the first sin of our parents. Notice how the curse of God placed upon Adam and Eve focuses on aspects of their marital life. The first thing they do is to cover themselves with fig leaves. Now, where do you think they put the fig leaves?
Do you think they put them on their elbows, their knee caps, their ankles? Why is it we don't need to be told where they put the fig leaves? We just know where they put them. Well, how do we just know? Why is that not a case of reading into the Bible some Western, 20th Century sexual hang-up?
Because this is a reality. This is a truth that far transcends our culture or any other society. We know where they put them and we hear the Lord describe the marriage relationship in Genesis 3 in terms that directly relate to their own sexual life together.
To the woman He said, "I will greatly multiply your pain in childbirth. In pain you shall bring forth children, yet your desire shall be for your husband and he shall rule over you. God's response to the sin of our first parents is to show them what impact that sin has on their own marriage covenant and on the outcome of their marital union and childbearing.
God is telling us from the very beginning that the first thing that sin does is to destroy this marital covenant that God established when He first made us. In His own image and likeness He made us to be three in one and then to be four in one and then five, by being fruitful and multiplying and showing forth the infinite love and life of God in history, the history of God's family.
So the Book of Genesis just plays out like a tragic horror story, detailing certain sexual sins and then their long-term consequences. Many of those consequences are not recognized until three or four or five centuries later, when the great-great-great grandchildren are in a sense inheriting the results of these certain forms of deviant behavior.
That's the way to teach law and when I'm teaching my kids at home what they should be doing, I discovered about three years ago that if you just simply give them commandments and do's and don'ts, they don't sink in.
So I made it a point, when I was tucking them into bed, to tell them stories, to tell them long, involved, narrative stories involving all kinds of action and drama.
And they're getting into this. And I would load up into those stories the very moral lessons that I'd been trying to teach them through the day. It wasn't until the end of the day, when they heard those stories and they could see the consequences of misbehavior and disobedience that the lessons really sunk in.
That's why we need to become more familiar with the Bible. We need to see what happens to societies, to nations, to civilizations when they embrace as alternative lifestyles sinful actions that tear apart the covenant of marriage.
We've looked at the New Testament teachings on marriage thus far and how Paul describes marriage as a mystery, as a sacrament. Then we went back to Mark 10 or Matthew 19 to see how Jesus instituted this by elevating marriage to be a sacrament and confirming the indissolubility of marriage which God had designed it to have at the very outset in creation. For about the last five minutes, we've looked at the Old Testament briefly to see what happens, practically speaking, when people mess around with this area of their lives.
And you can see that the consequences are very, very great and catastrophic. But there's one particular episode that I find particularly interesting in John 4, beginning in verse 7: Jesus said to her, 'Give me drink. The Samaritan woman said to Him, 'How is it that you, a Jew, ask a drink of me, a woman of Samaria, for Jews have no dealings with Samaritans? Where do you get that living water? Are you greater than our Father Jacob, who gave us the well and drank from it himself, and his sons and his cattle?
The water that I shall give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life. This you said truly. Up until now the story has been familiar. What does the woman say in response? You've had five husbands, and the one you are with right now is not your husband. In other words, mind your own business? So what, if I've had five husbands, what difference is that to you, a Jew?
You don't even live here. What business do you have prying into my own personal problems, my life crisis? She says, "Sir, I perceive you are a prophet. You see, the Samaritans didn't believe in the prophets. If you had a copy of the Samaritan Bible, it was much shorter than the Jewish Bible. The Jewish Bible consisted of the Law and the Prophets.
They didn't accept any of the prophets as inspired scripture. Because all of the prophets, practically without exception, denounced Samaria and called the Samaritans idolaters for worshipping God on Mount Perazim and following the ways of the idolaters, the Baal worshippers, the followers of Baal. So, if you are constantly hearing prophets denounce your own nation, your own people, your own lifestyle, you're not going to include their writings in your sacred scripture, and the Samaritans didn't.
Consequently the Samaritans didn't believe in prophets like the Jews did. But the Samaritans did believe in the one prophet, because in the Law, in the Book of Deuteronomy, chapter 18, Moses issues a promise: God will send the Messiah, a deliverer, and He will be, "a prophet like unto Moses. They only believed in one prophet, the prophet who was to come, the "prophet like unto Moses. Listen to this woman again. Jesus had just said to her, "You're right in saying you have no husband.
You have had five husbands and the one you are with now is not your husband. She said, 'Sir, I perceive you are a prophet. When you read the story on the surface, you don't have an answer to that question. But when you dig deeper and deeper, you'll find one. You see, the prophet that God sent to Samaria constantly warned the Samaritans about their sinful practices and how they were constantly living like the other nations.
So when the Samaritans had broken away from the Jews years before Christ, a series of prophets kept warning and threatening them saying, "You know what's going to happen as a result of your sin.
You are going to be cursed. You are going to be conquered. You are going to be defeated by enemies. He says in effect, "I sent you all these prophets and you've ignored them or you've maligned them or you've tortured them. You haven't paid heed at all to their message. Therefore, I will give you over to the nations -- one nation in particular -- the Assyrians. Inthe Assyrians came into Samaria and slaughtered the Samaritans and forcibly resettled five different groups of foreigners in the land of Samaria.
There God prophetically speaks of how back years before Christ, the Samaritans who survived and who stayed in the land of Samaria would be surrounded by all these idolatrous pagans who would bring in their idols, their Baals.
They would worship Baal. You've heard of Bayal worship or Baal worship. God said, "Because you've imitated these nations, they are coming to you, and they are bringing their gods, their false gods, their idols. In the Hebrew it's "Baalene," their idols. But in particular, 2 Kings 17 specifically lists five different Baals that the Samaritans would be surrounded by as these five foreign peoples settled in their land.
So the Samaritans had been warned and then they were shown what consequences would follow. Five peoples would be forcibly resettled in their own homeland and they would bring in these five idols and worship their Baals. One interesting fact that you might not be aware of -- what is the Hebrew word for husband? There are different words, but one very common word for husband is Baal.
You see, there were two different kinds of marriages in the Old Testament. You can see this reflected in Galatians 4, where Paul says, "You desire to be under the law. Don't you hear the law, for it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by a slave and one by a free woman. One by a slave woman, Hagar, and one by a free woman. But the son of the slave was born according to the flesh. The son of the free woman through promise.
Then he goes on to show how Hagar, the slave wife, the concubine, bore Ishmael and how Sarah, the free wife, the first wife, the only wife Abraham was supposed to have, bore Isaac, the child of promise. You see, back in the ancient times, if you were a husband, if you were a man, you were a patriarchal figure and you wanted to extend your own power and influence, you wanted to acquire more power, you used sex.
You would multiply concubines because in multiplying wives or concubine slave women, you would be multiplying slaves, because all of the children they would have would be, in effect, your slaves later on.
So Hagar bore children for slavery, whereas Sarah bore Abraham children for freedom. Sarah would address Abraham as "'adon," the word for husband in Hebrew that a free woman would utter; whereas Hagar would describe Abraham as "Ba'ali," my "Baal," my master, my Lord husband, because a concubine understood that she was owned by her husband.
Two forms of marriage -- one for freedom and the other one for slavery. The Samaritans understood all of this because one of the greatest prophecies in the Old Testament is found in Hosea, chapter 2, where the prophet Hosea comes up against Samaria and warns the Samaritans what's going to happen. He says in effect, "Because you have followed these false gods, these Baals, you are going to be given over to those who worship Baal and that their worshippers are going to bring their Baals into your land and they are going to overrun you.
But there will come a day, Hosea promises, when the Lord will allure Israel, Samaritans and bring the Samaritans back into the wilderness. And in Hosea 2: And I will make for you a covenant on that day, and I will betroth you to me forever. I will betroth you to me in righteousness and in justice and in steadfast love and in mercy. I will betroth you to me in faithfulness.
You shall know the Lord. Many interpreters suppose that when Jesus said, "And the one you are with now is not your own husband," that that supposes that she is sleeping with a man.
That isn't necessarily all that the text is suggesting. The idea is probably, at least in my opinion, that you've had five husbands and the one you're with right now, that is me, I'm not your husband. He's meeting her at a well. In the Old Testament, do you know enough of the Old Testament to recognize what often takes place at a well? You meet your spouse-to-be; you meet your future spouse.
That's where Isaac's future spouse was first encountered. That's where Jacob meets his wife.
That's where Moses meets his wife. Throughout the Old Testament, the well is a meeting place where you meet your future husband. Here is this Samaritan woman meeting Jesus and he points out how you have five husbands and she sees that.
And then He says, "But the one you are with now is not your husband. And she recalls the prophecy. She vividly remembers how all the prophets said that you are going to have these five Baals until the Messiah comes, "the prophet like unto Moses. That's why she says, "Sir, I perceive you are a prophet. You are a prophet like unto Moses. What lessons can we learn from this for our lives? I would suggest to you that your own life has been crafted by God--not just the good times, but the bad times; not just the easy times, but the hard times.
You all, I suspect, have undergone some sort of mistreatment from other people, and if you are married, I can assure you because your spouse is fallible and sinful, like all of us, that you feel hurt. You may have been abused, verbally or physically. This woman was also, like her people, the Samaritans, like our society today. God gives us whatever we want. If we want Him, He gives himself to us lavishly.
If we want those things that Satan offers, God's wrathful response is to say, "Fine, you don't want me. You want these other false gods; my punishment is, you want 'em, you got 'em, and they'll pull you down.
But eventually, I will come back to you and I will woo you away from them. Given the tragic and the painful experiences of our own past lives, we need to look into the interior of our own souls and recognize that God has allowed certain things to happen to us in order for us to recognize Jesus as our Lord, as our Savior, as our Prophet, but as our husband, as the one who gives us the grace to live out our own marriage covenant, to raise a family in Godliness.
Personal Experience of the Crisis in Marriage as an Opportunity to Grow Closer to Jesus I really believe that Catholic Christians in America today have an incredible opportunity, in the midst of all of these crises to emerge stronger and more devout, in more grace than ever before. I want to tell you briefly from my own personal experience how this is true. In seminary, my wife undertook a study of contraception.
And as a result of being very open-minded and prayerful, she came to change her mind. She is going to share about that later on today. It was very difficult for us at first. We prayed for assistance and God gave us the grace and when we finally got off contraception and we opened ourselves up to God's gift of life, we were shocked to discover that God had granted us a child.
We were so excited, even though it disrupted some plans that we had made to go over to Great Britain to pursue a doctoral program in Scotland, even though I knew that was the most prestigious route to take and all of that, God graced us so much. And my wife looks back on the last ten or twelve years of our marriage life and she says, "You know, you read some books and they persuaded you to talk to some people and they helped you see the Catholic faith.
And I believe that if we will accept the challenge of obedience that we will see the hurts and the weaknesses in our own lives, in our own marriages, but then give them over to Christ and say, "Sir, I perceive you are the prophet. You are the Messiah. You are the Savior of my life, of my soul, but also of my marriage and family. Our discovery of the truth about contraception, I am sure, led us to be more open to other truths the Catholic Church proclaims.
Even though consciously I didn't think for a minute that the Catholic Church was really a viable option at that point.
Later on, though, I discovered many truths of the Catholic faith through hard study. I don't want to get into all of the painful details, but may it suffice to say that, since Kimberly only became a Catholic about a year-and-a-half ago, we went through approximately four -- maybe four-and-a-half years -- of painful struggle. One of my closest friends counseled her to consider divorcing me.
God be praised, he is now a Catholic! But we went through a struggle that we never, ever imagined we would go through. We had married twelve years ago. We had fashioned a covenant. We had even put on the bulletin for the wedding liturgy an explanation of what the marital covenant is and how permanent it is and what God had designed it to be.
We went through four or five years of hell. I can say it honestly. We went through times when we could barely talk. I was so caught up with a rich discovery of the glories of the Catholic Church. My life was theological study and my whole life had been disrupted, and I realized God's call was on my life. And I tried to play the part of the Holy Spirit in Kimberly's life, telling her, teaching her, forcing sanctification upon her, doing all of these things the wrong way. She was resistant because she didn't feel any great need to find God's family.
She grew up in a very strong family. Mine was not really so strong. She had grown up in a very alive and dynamic parish. The congregations I had experienced were barely strong enough to be considered weak.