Relationship under the Auspice of Christian Norms – By Nehita Oyamendan

It is easy for one to say there is nothing as a Christian relationship and conclude that relationship is relationship and cannot be sub-divided into any category. Here we have two main words to cogitate about and as a matter of fact give a definition to them. Giving a definition to them will further aid us in the understanding of the subject matter.

The question is what is a relationship? I can aptly say that relationship is the way in which two or more people or things are connected or a state of being connected. There are different types of relationship but I will be detailing about two that I presume that are the most important types.

The Interpersonal relationship: A relationship of strong, deep or a close association or acquaintance between two or more people that may range in duration from brief to enduring.

Intimate Relationship: It is an interpersonal relationship that involves physical or emotional intimacy. Here, physical intimacy is characterized by friendship, platonic, love, romantic love or sexual activity. From these definitions it shows that an interpersonal relationship is what metamorphoses into an intimate relationship. However, nowadays the understanding of this relationship has change because it begins with being intimate and not interpersonal first.

It is very important we grasp on this very fact that since relationship is the mingling of two or more people, whether they are Christians or Pagans. The Church as an entity is made of people who are Christians or better still believers and as people they cannot avoid being in a relationship. Therefore, no doubt relationships do take place in the Church as well, but what to scrutinize is how does it take place. Well, I can say that relationship in the Church has gone into what I call ‘revelation relationship’ which is where a brother sees a certain picture of a sister in trance and he concludes that the particular sister is God’s sent to him as either a wife or a partner. On the contrary as spiritual as it may sound, this kind of relationship has not been void of issues that have raised dust and questions its veracity on the spiritual scale. This revelation relationship is subject to substantiation but I will leave it for another series and we shall unfold it in details.

While walking on the periphery of the word relationship, there is this word that allies with it and we cannot skip to talk about dating because they are interwoven. I define dating as a form of romantic courtship typically between two individuals with the aim of assessing each other’s suitability as a partner in an intimate relationship or as a spouse. It is possible for one to have a relationship with someone he or she is not dating! With this, I mean interpersonal relationship or acquaintance.

The reason for one to be in a relationship is mainly to get to know the other person and the reason to date is strictly to assess compatibility with the other especially for marriage. Therefore, if marriage isn’t the aim then there should be no dating! The concept of dating in a relationship is quite different nowadays from what it used to be, having the church in mind. Dating as it stands has been reduced to basically a sexual engagement among teens and adults and it takes the grace of God for a believer to have dates void of sexual acts.

The church as an entity that has norms that guard its activities, the relationship under its roof should be conducted under the watchful eyes its principles. A Christian relationship therefore, is a kind of relationship that is built on godly principles, and such principles include “no to premarital sex” as stipulated in 1 Corinthians 6:18a, “flee fornication and it went further to say that ‘every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body”. The sin of fornication is quite different from every other sin and most culprits of this sin are people in relationships and our Christian brethren aren’t left out.

Certainly, some Christians find it quite difficult to be in a relationship that is void of sexual acts because of uncontrollable emotions. This is what I call “Emotional Rush” and most Christians put themselves in such situation by staying alone with their spouse to be. Recall that the bible in Ephesians 5:3 clearly states that “But fornication and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be ONCE named among you as becometh saints;” The moment you accept Christ and as a believer in a relationship, “fornication” shouldn’t be ONCE mentioned; the thought surely will come but the ability to avert it is very vital and should be imbued in the life of any believer in a relationship. While in a relationship as a believer instead of ruminating on the unnecessary things like fornication one should feed on the needful which is engaging oneself in matters that engineers spiritual growth.

Nehita Oyamendan – Talking Christianity


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