By Jeremy Sweets
Youth, a time of fun. It is a time to be free and live life to its fullest extent, a time to experience life and all it offers. Many even say it is a time to “sow your wild oats.” Many people say teens should do whatever they want to as long as it makes them happy. Today people say many different things, but the Bible says that youth is a time to remember God. Young people should follow the word of God. Ecclesiastes 12:1 says, “Remember also your Creator in the days of your youth, before the evil days come and the years draw near when you will say, `I have no delight in them.”‘
This was a message inspired by God and written down by the wisest mortal man to ever live. This is some advice that I dare not go against because God has proven over and over that he knows what he is talking about. His wisdom far exceeds that of human wisdom (1 Cor. 1:25).
Jesus Died For Us!
There are many reasons that youth should be given to God. The first and foremost reason is that God sent his Son, Jesus Christ, to die on the cross. In his death Jesus died for all of mankind, including the youth (Jn. 3:16). Jesus went through many hours of torture for all, young and old alike. Because of this gracious sacrifice, young people today owe God their spiritual lives. We, as young people, can never truly repay God for this, but we should do our best by giving God our life of service.
Give God Our Influence
Another very important reason to give God your gift of youth is because a young person can do some things that the elderly cannot do. The first thing that comes to mind is that of influence (Tit. 2:6-7). A young person has a special kind of influence over his peers. As young persons, whatever we do there are eyes watching us. Our example will cause people to notice how we are living. Some people may even want to find out what is so great about God and his church that it would cause somebody to live a godly life. This is something I have really had to watch lately because I have a little five-year-old brother. I have caught him many times mimicking the very things that I do. This is really frightening and makes me watch myself very carefully. Another thing about being an example is that we will not realize we have had an effect on people until it is too late. That is why we need to always be doing what is right in the sight of God.
Give God Our Strength and Zeal
There are also some characteristics of young people that give them an advantage in fighting for the cause of Christ. In 1 John 2:13-14 John admonished and encouraged the young for being strong unto the end and overcoming the evil one. We learn from the proverb in Proverbs 20:29 that says the glory of the young man is in his strength. Strength is something that the young have and they should use it to the best of their ability. Another characteristic the young possess is zeal or enthusiasm (Tit. 2:14). David in his youth showed great courage and enthusiasm in fighting the giant, Goliath (1 Sam. 17). He was eager to work for God when many people who were David’s elders refused to fight Goliath. Such characteristics of youth like strength and zeal should always be used as best as possible in serving God, not wasted in serving Satan.
Our Choices Have Consequences
“Sowing your oats” has many consequences. Just from the one simple act of premarital sex there are the consequences of pregnancy, AIDS, grievances, and loss of self worth. Also God said it is sin, and that fact alone makes it a bad idea (Matt. 5:27; 1 Cor. 6:18). There is also the sin of drinking. This causes many young people to develop diseases, lose the respect of others, and ruin their reputation. When mixed with driving it causes accidents and many times death. Like all drug abuse, drinking alcohol often leads to general carousing and disrespect for authority that can get young people in trouble with the: law, their parents, and especially God.
Many young people do not engage in such activities as these. Some are good morally, but they plainly forget about God. This kind of young person has nothing to look forward to in life or after this life. There is no meaning of life without God. Ecclesiastes 12:1 says that the evil years will draw near and we will say, “I have no delight in them.” If we devote our life to God in our youth, heaven will be our reward by the grace of God.
All young people should take careful note of what God has to say about the Judgment Day. As soon as young individuals reach accountability, they must answer for what they have done in their youth. They will not be excluded from God’s judgment. Romans 14:10-11 says, “For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of God. For it is written, `As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall give praise to God.’ That says every knee shall bow. That would include all the youth. This is why God said we must remember our Creator in the days of our youth.
There are several positive consequences for remembering God in youth. First of all, when we obey the gospel God wipes away all of our sins. Sin is so detestable that a God of love would send somebody to hell for sins. But we can avoid hell and receive God’s gift of forgiveness if we have faith in God, repent of our sins, confess Christ, and receive him in baptism. That is such a small step to take to receive the forgiveness of our sins. Then, after we have become a Christian, Christ continues to bestow many blessings upon us. Christ is our example and helps us to make all the right decisions through his word and through godly people. We can also talk to God any time we want to talk to him through the avenue of prayer. He will listen any time, and he will help us with our problems. Another blessing that Christ gives us is the hope of a place in heaven with God. Heaven will be a place of eternal joy. There will be no pain, tears, or death, things that plague us here on this earth. There will only be happiness. Because of this we need to always remember God, and he will give us life to its fullest meaning.
In conclusion, God loves the young. In a time when many people disregard and overlook youth there is some-one who cares for you. He has given us every thing that we have. Not only did he do that but also he gave his own life for us. He gave us youth as a gift, not something that should be taken for granted. It all boils down to one question. Should one’s youth be wasted? The answer is no, and furthermore, being young should not be used as an excuse not to follow God. Youth is fleeting everyday of our lives. It is plain foolishness to waste it. Instead, it should be devoted to the Lord our God in simple submission.
Guardian of Truth XXXIX: 6 p. 3-4
March 16, 1995