The Art of Dating

The Art of Dating

How do you date and how do you romance your wives? Let’s take a look from the Song of Solomon.

2:8-14

8 The voice of my beloved!
    Behold, he comes,
leaping over the mountains,
    bounding over the hills.
My beloved is like a gazelle
    or a young stag.
Behold, there he stands
    behind our wall,
gazing through the windows,
    looking through the lattice.
10 My beloved speaks and says to me:
“Arise, my love, my beautiful one,
    and come away,
11 for behold, the winter is past;
    the rain is over and gone.
12 The flowers appear on the earth,
    the time of singing has come,
and the voice of the turtledove
    is heard in our land.
13 The fig tree ripens its figs,
    and the vines are in blossom;
    they give forth fragrance.
Arise, my love, my beautiful one,
    and come away.
14 O my dove, in the clefts of the rock,
    in the crannies of the cliff,
let me see your face,
    let me hear your voice,
for your voice is sweet,
    and your face is lovely.

We would call that a “Stud.”

What time of the year is it? It is the spring, because that is what love is. It is springtime. It is life and it is exciting.

So he goes to get his woman. He’s got his ’57 chariot and he is getting over there as fast as he can. And we think about this guy who is so eager to get over to see this girl and we laugh. But this text is not meant to be laughed at, but emulated.

This is the Bible, and romance is not to be laughed at or departed from. It is meant to be imitated and mimicked.

When a man get’s married, he’s romantic. Then he gets caught up in his duty and responsibility and he loses it. He has got to make that check and do the weed eating and the mechanical work. The woman has a duty and responsibility to that home. Pretty soon you no longer have lovers. They lose their creativity and you end up as a housekeeper and gardener sharing a bathroom and a bedroom, and that is not exciting.

God is a romantic individual. This book is a love song.

And in Song of Solomon this guy is still romantic.

2:14

O my dove, in the clefts of the rock,
    in the crannies of the cliff,
let me see your face,
    let me hear your voice,
for your voice is sweet,
    and your face is lovely.

We are going from dating to depth. He is saying to this vulnerable and tender girl, “Come out and let me see you. Communicate with me for I want to know you.”

He does to her like Jesus does to us.

I don’t know if couples realize this but this is where you fell in love. You spend time with her and you get into her and she gets into you and you connect with each other deeply. This is the way you fall in love.

Level one communication is cliché. Level two is the exchange of information. Level three is feelings. This is where you communicate fears and dreams. Where you listen and sympathize. Often our biggest problem in marriage is that we quit doing that. There is a big difference to a husband who is close by you and a husband who is close by you.

The reason dating relationships are good and it is springtime is because we say I’m going to pick you up at six and bring you back at midnight. And it’s me and you and we are going to talk and get deep. That is sweet and sometimes we quit doing that.

The biggest complaint in counseling is that the husband will no longer share himself. When a woman asks, “how did your job go?” she wants to know that.

Men were created for the glory of God and Eve for the glory of man. (Corinthians) When you will no longer share yourself with your dove and allow here to come out, it is like your Bible now contains blank pages and God will no longer talk to you. You have got to share yourself with your bride.

You have to still try to date her. You have to be the initiator and your wife is still just as exciting as she was when you married her. You think you know her, but you don’t know her and she doesn’t know you.

One of the worst things about our culture is television. It teaches you listen and look, but it doesn’t teach you to talk. So we produce these emotional vegetables that are unable to communicate in marriage.

What happens when your dating goes to depth, DANGER. You married flawed material. He or she is a sinner. The springtime of your love is cut short because of the foxes get in the vineyards.

2:15

Catch the foxes for us,
    the little foxes
that spoil the vineyards,
    for our vineyards are in blossom.

When a fox gets in the vineyard it eats the bud before it turns into a ripe gripe. Do you ever get a fox in the vineyard that will not allow your love to ripen. For some of you your love has never ripened. You must have an “us” and “our” mentality in the commitment to the relationship.

When you’re a single you have problems, but you don’t know you have problems. You never knew until you got married you were controlling and selfish. You never knew you couldn’t control your body or had an abrasive tongue.

What do you do?

“Catch the foxes for us that are ruining our vineyards”

Most couples that come for counseling will say, “He has a fox in the vineyard,” or “She has a problem.” They will say change my wife or change my husband. Until the marriage is more important than selfish interests you can’t work with them. If you win an argument you lose a marriage. You have to say, “I am not important. We are important.”

Do you remember why you wanted to get married?

“Bone of my bone, flesh of my flesh.”

“The two shall become one flesh.”

“It is not good for man to be alone. I will make a helpmate suitable for him.”

Help, companionship, intimacy. That’s marriage!

She didn’t marry you because you are a good kisser or because of financial goals. At some point you opened up to her and she touched you and fell in love with intimacy. When a woman or man feels like they can’t get in to their mate, there is no greater loneliness.

Some of you guys are great weed eaters, mechanics, and great providers. You have to let that woman in. That is why she married you.

You may say I used to be romantic, but not anymore. You used to romantic, and you still can be. Men are supposed to be the great romantics, but is has been bred out of most men in society. Men begin to believe a good husband is a cyborg that fulfills his duty to make money.

Look at the way a wife responds when there is true intimacy.

v.16

My beloved is mine, and I am his;
    he grazes among the lilies.

This is when a man and woman can say I know my wife or my husband loves me.

v.17

Until the day breathes
    and the shadows flee,
turn, my beloved, be like a gazelle
    or a young stag on cleft mountains (twin mountains).

Until the day breathes, or morning, she calls for him to come like a young stud. This is a godly view of sexual desire. This is put here by God and sexual desire is from God. But just like a burning fire, if you do not protect it with the steel grate of wisdom then it will burn your house down.

3:1-5

1 On my bed by night
I sought him whom my soul loves;
    I sought him, but found him not.
I will rise now and go about the city,
    in the streets and in the squares;
I will seek him whom my soul loves.
    I sought him, but found him not.
The watchmen found me
    as they went about in the city.
“Have you seen him whom my soul loves?”
Scarcely had I passed them
    when I found him whom my soul loves.
I held him, and would not let him go
    until I had brought him into my mother’s house,
    and into the chamber of her who conceived me.
I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem,
    by the gazelles or the does of the field,
that you not stir up or awaken love
    until it pleases.

Why is this text here? It is showing you how a woman feels. Women want the security of knowing their husband is close and loves them. It is not enough just to do the weed eating. You must touch and share your soul.

Verse 5, men and women. There are buttons and switches in you put there by God, but you do not hit that switch until it is time. You cannot build a dating relationship on lighter fluid. You must build your relationship on the deep embers of love, respect, and communication. You do not need to work on a sexual relationship by working on sex. You work on communication, tenderness, and respect.

The first time she says this her patience is rewarded with the depth of a dating relationship. This time her patience is awarded with the honeymoon. Stay tuned!

Tommy Nelson is the Pastor of Denton Bible Church and guest instructor at the Kanakuk Institute.

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