Question:

Do you believe that it is OK for a Christian to use online dating if he does not currently have any options where he goes to church or where he works? The few whom I would be interested in at church are simply not interested in me. (I understand that I'm not everyone's "type")

If it is morally right, can you elaborate some about the ethics of online dating? Is it OK to have communication with more than one woman at a time? I don't want to hurt anyone but at the same time I have no idea if any given relationship will work out.The bottom line:Is it OK to have "options" to see which one works out?

I'm looking forward to your answer online. Thanks for what you do on the web site - it is a great resource for Christians on the Internet.


Answer:

The problem with online dating is that you really don't know who is on the other end. It is far too easy to pretend to be someone you are not. Thus, while online dating can get you acquainted with a number of people, it won't truly tell you who they are until you actually meet them and spend time with them.

What I usually tell people to do is instead work at increasing the circle of people whom they know. Visit area congregations, go to meetings, singings, and other get togethers. The more people you know, male and female, the more chances you have of running either into another person looking or someone who knows of someone who is looking. "A man who has friends must himself be friendly, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother" (Proverbs 18:24).

Online dating should be treated just like meeting a person in a group of other people. This is a chance to have some initial conversations to see if there is mutual interest. There should be no expectations of exclusiveness because you don't know the other person well enough. One of the problems in modern-day dating is a strong rush to exclusiveness that often ends up bring strong temptations to go too far. You are better off taking your time. "Also it is not good for a soul to be without knowledge, and he sins who hastens with his feet" (Proverbs 19:2).