Ellen White Topics
Courtship as carried on in this age is a scheme of deception and hypocrisy. It has a bewitching influence upon the minds. I have been shown that had the purposes of many young persons been carried out, there would have been disappointments, estrangements, separation. The enemy of souls has far more to do with match-making than has the Lord, whose property they are. Many youth seem to think that marriage is the attainment of perfect bliss; but if these could see one quarter of the heart-aching letters that I have received from men and women who are bound by the marriage vow in chains that they cannot and dare not break, they would not be surprised that I trace these lines. 18MR 310

Parents are asleep and know not that Satan has planted his hellish banner right in their households. What, I was led to inquire, will become of the youth in this corrupt age? I repeat, Parents are asleep. The children are infatuated with a lovesick sentimentalism, and the truth has no power to correct the wrong. What can be done to stay the tide of evil? Parents can do much if they will. If a young girl just entering her teens is accosted with familiarity by a boy of her own age, or older, she should be taught to so resent this that no such advances will ever be repeated. When a girl's company is frequently sought by boys or young men, something is wrong. That young girl needs a mother to show her her place, to restrain her, and teach her what belongs to a girl of her age. 2T 482

If you, my brother, are allured to unite your life interest with a young, inexperienced girl, who is really deficient in education in the common, practical, daily duties of life, you make a mistake; but this deficiency is small compared with her ignorance in regard to her duty to God. She has not been destitute of light; she has had religious privileges, and yet she has not felt her wretched sinfulness without Christ. If, in your infatuation, you can repeatedly turn from the prayer meeting, where God meets with His people, in order to enjoy the society of one who has no love for God and who sees no attractions in the religious life, how can you expect God to prosper such a union? Be not in haste. Early marriages should not be encouraged. If either young women or young men have no respect for the claims of God, if they fail to heed the claims which bind them to religion, there will be danger that they will not properly regard the claims of the husband or of the wife. The habit of frequently being in the society of the one of your choice, and that, too, at the sacrifice of religious privileges and of your hours of prayer, is dangerous; you sustain a loss that you cannot afford. The habit of sitting up late at night is customary; but it is not pleasing to God, even if you are both Christians. These untimely hours injure health, unfit the mind for the next day's duties, and have an appearance of evil. My brother, I hope you will have self-respect enough to shun this form of courtship. If you have an eye single to the glory of God you will move with deliberate caution. You will not suffer lovesick sentimentalism to so blind your vision that you cannot discern the high claims that God has upon you as a Christian. 3T 44

Parents are asleep. They don't know that Satan has planted his hellish banner right in their households. What, I was led to inquire, will become of the youth in this corrupt age? I say parents are asleep. The children are infatuated with a love-sick sentimentalism, and the truth has no power to correct the wrong. What can be done to stay the tide of evil? Parents can do much if they will. If a young girl just entering her teens is accosted with familiarity by a boy of her own age, or older, she should be taught to so resent this, that no such advances will ever be repeated. When a girl's company is frequently sought for by boys or young men, something is wrong. That young girl needs a mother to show her her place, or to restrain her, and teach her what belongs to a girl of her age. PH011 67

Many of the marriages contracted in these last days prove to be a mistake. The parties make no advancement in spiritual things; their growth and usefulness ended with their marriage. There are men and women throughout the country who would have been accepted as labourers together with God if Satan had not laid his snares to entangle their minds and hearts in courtship and marriage. Did the Lord urge them to obtain the advantages of our schools and missions that they might sink everything in courtship and marriage, binding themselves by a human band for a lifetime? PH048 28

Examine carefully to see if your married life would be happy, or inharmonious and wretched. Let the questions be raised, Will this union help me heavenward? will it increase my love for God? and will it enlarge my sphere of usefulness in this life? If these reflections present no drawback, then in the fear of God move forward. But even if an engagement has been entered into without a full understanding of the character of the one with whom you intend to unite, do not think that the engagement makes it a positive necessity for you to take upon yourself the marriage vow, and link yourself for life to one whom you cannot love and respect. Be very careful how you enter into conditional engagements; but better, far better, break the engagement before marriage than separate afterward, as many do. RH JAN.26,1886

True love is a plant that needs culture. Let the woman who desires a peaceful, happy union, who would escape future misery and sorrow, inquire before she yields her affections, Has my lover a mother? What is the stamp of her character? Does he recognise his obligations to her? Is he mindful of her wishes and happiness? If he does not respect and honour his mother, will he manifest respect and love, kindness and attention, toward his wife? When the novelty of marriage is over, will he love me still? Will he be patient with my mistakes, or will he be critical, overbearing, and dictatorial? True affection will overlook many mistakes; love will not discern them. The youth trust altogether too much to impulse. RH JAN.26,1886

The youth trust altogether too much impulse. They should not give themselves away to easily, nor be captivated too readily by the wining exterior of the lover. Courtship, as carried on in this age, is a scheme of deception and hypocrisy, with which the enemy of souls has far more to do than the Lord. Good common sense is needed here if anywhere; but the fact is, it has little to do in the matter. RH JAN.26,1886

Attachments formed in childhood have often resulted in a very wretched union, or in a disgraceful separation. Early connections, if formed without the consent of parents, have seldom proved happy. The young affections should be restrained until the period arrives when sufficient age and experience will make it honourable and safe to unfetter them. Those who will not be restrained, will be in danger of dragging out an unhappy existence. A youth not out of his teens is a poor judge of the fitness of a person, as young as himself, to be his companion for life. After their judgement has become more matured, they view themselves bound for life to each other, and perhaps not at all calculated to make each other happy. Then, instead of making the best of their lot, recriminations take place, the breach widens, until there is settled indifference and neglect of each other. To them there is nothing sacred in the word home. The very atmosphere is poisoned by unloving words and bitter reproaches. The offspring of such are placed in a much more unfavourable condition than were their parents. With such surroundings, such examples, what could be expected of them if time should continue? Mothers, the great cause of these physical, mental, and moral evils, is secret vice, which inflames the passions, fevers the imagination, and leads to fornication and adultery. This vice is laying waste the constitution of very many, and preparing them for diseases of almost every description. And shall we permit our children to pursue a course of self-destruction? SA 52