Boundless magazine has published part 1 of a series of articles on ‘biblical dating’ by Scott Croft. It looks like it is based on the first of CHBCs core seminars on the subject, so I suspect the remaining articles will follow the rest of that course. Since there are various views as to what biblical dating should look like I am sure the various reactions expressed in the comments to the various biblical dating blog posts are only a taste of what’s to come.
The article first applies the principle of the sufficiency of scripture to the issue of dating, establishing the need for a description of what biblical dating is. This should not be controversial, though Christians don’t always take it as seriously as they ought. Secondly he outlines the principles he intends to discuss by distinguishing between biblical dating and modern dating according to a number of features that he says are always present in biblical dating and may not be present in worldly dating. By modern dating it appears he means modern secular dating, where biblical principles are not intentionally used, rather than Christian dating, where proponents believe a different set of principles ought to govern dating. Scott now prefers to use the phrase ‘biblical dating’ rather than the word ‘courtship’. I’m fine with him leaving out the word courtship because it miscommunicates various ideas. I am also OK with him speaking of biblical dating, since that’s what he believes he has described, even though he may get things wrong, as long as he does not consider his optional suggestions to be necessary parts of biblical dating.
In the course of revisiting my thoughts on this subject I discovered that Rick Holland’s view on biblical dating is available online in a series of articles. He contributed a chapter to the book 5 Paths to the Love of Your Life which has been serialised at crosswalk.com: Part I, Part II, Part II – continued, Part III, and Part IV. The material is based on his relationship series. I understand that he is also writing a book based on his ideas. I tend to prefer Rick’s content and presentation to the way Scott has taught ‘biblical dating’ in the past, though I hope Scott will make some good changes this time.