The question ‘is it ok to date a non-Christian if you are a Christian?’ is fairly simple to answer. Whoever you decide to date depends entirely on you.
Religion is generally a touchy subject especially with people who are very religious. Because their beliefs are so important to them, they do not want to hear others mocking them or expressing opinions that put their beliefs in a negative light.
The benefits of dating a Christian if you are a Christian
If you identify as a Christian you will have to consider whether you would feel uncomfortable dating someone who is not a Christian. There are no hard and fast rules in Christianity saying that you cannot date someone outside of the religion, although many religious organisations would prefer it. If your religion and its practices and beliefs are a central part of your life and if you would like a partner with whom you can discuss and share your religious thoughts and experiences, someone who will accompany you to church and other religious gatherings and someone who, if you one decide to marry, will want a religious ceremony and will want to bring your children up within the religion, you would probably prefer to date a Christian.
If you do date a Christian individual they will have an understanding of your beliefs and your life philosophy. If you grew up in a Christian home and they did too, it is likely that your families will accept you both into the fold much more easily.
Dating a non-Christian if you are a Christian
If your religion is not exactly central to your life and if you have no problem considering your faith a personal matter, you could very easily date someone of a different religion. However, if you date someone who is a strict Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist or any other type of religion you will have to deal with compromising two very different views. Depending on how integral your partner’s religion is to them, you might have to deal with a level of animosity about the difference between the two of you. If you date an agnostic or atheist you will still have to deal with a view very different from your own.
To sum, dating someone of a different religion or who is an atheist or agnostic when you are a Christian can be challenging but it should not be a deal breaker. There are many areas of life that couples must learn to compromise on and be open to each other’s views and this is just another one of those instances. It is likely, because faith is something so personal and close to a person’s heart, that you will both feel very strongly about your beliefs, but this does not mean that you cannot love each other and be with each other.
Tips on dating someone of a different religion to you
The most important thing, when dating someone who has a different faith to yours, is to remember never to force your beliefs onto the other individual. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion and you should hear each other out, discuss what you think and feel and then compromise. This is not an issue that can be resolved in one sitting. If you continue to date, it is likely to be something that will crop up again and again in your relationship. If you can learn how to be understanding, gentle and compromising, you will be able to have a successful relationship with someone of a different religion to you.
There have been many cases of people converting for their partners, but it is important not to push for this or expect this of your partner. You could suggest that you would love to share this with your partner, if they would be willing to hear more about your religion and your experiences, but you should then be open to their beliefs and experiences as well.