One of the hot topics when people start discussing courtship vs. dating is which is better. Some people say, "We dated and we've been married fifty years." Others say, " We courted and divorced after five years." So which is better? There have been dating relationships that have worked out wonderfully and courtships that have ended in disaster.
The thing that we need to get a grasp on before we go any further is, the name of the game doesn't matter, so much as whether the directions to the game are biblically sound or not. As Christians this should be our number one concern.
Say your family loves to play Nuts (a card game). One day you are gathered with some friends and you challenge them to play Nuts. You explain the game and they say, "Hey, that sounds like Peanuts. We love that game!" Come to find out it is the same game, just they call it Peanuts and you call it Nuts.
It can be that way with dating and courtship too. Not all dating relationships are bad and not all courting relationships are good. It is not so much what we call our relationships, it is more the focus of our relationships. Whether you choose to call your relationships dating or courtship is totally up to you.
The reason that a lot of Christians like to use the term courtship is because dating evokes images of frivolous, fun filled, undirected, undisciplined relationships, where as courtship speaks of cautious, fun filled, disciplined, purposeful relationships. We will get more into that later.
To sum things up, the name of the game is just that, a name. If your name is Susan and your sister's name is Christa, that does not make one of you better or worse then the other. Your behavior is what defines who you are. The same with dating and courtship. The name does not mean a whole lot, it is the behaviors of those involved that define the terms, and that is the bottom line of the issue.