The Sins's of Our Youth
Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart. 2 Timothy 2:22
Many are the sins of our youth. Full of energy and excitement, we entered life with enthusiasm. In our youth we are thinking of our own self interests. What a sin this is and we never even consider it to be so. We are young and life is exciting. Thoughts of God are few. Time for Him is even less. We never give any thought as to why we exist. Isn't that the way we are?
The sins of our youth will trouble us later after we are saved, and we wonder why we were so foolish. But while we are young, these thoughts flee us. Little we know of the trouble, shame and pain of youthful lusts. Sins of ignorance, lust, pride, and selfishness, lead us down the wrong road of life. But, we did not count on that. We were so smart, we thought we could handle it. We were planning our life and doing our thing. It was only natural we lived as we did. We failed to understand just who we were. Had we known the truth of our nature, that we were sinful creatures needing a new heart, we would have fared better. Though we may have heard that teaching, it just did not register as being as serious to us as it really was.
How many of us realize from birth we are born a sinner and realize the seriousness of it? Of all the sins of our youth, none are more condemning than that of failing to trust Jesus as our personal Savior. Without Him we live in darkness. Without Him we live in sin. Without Him we will be eternally miserable. We did not reckon these things serious because we were young. We thought we had a full life ahead of us to attend to those things. We looked at the world through eyes blind to truth and did not even know it. Did we know we were the children of wrath? Did we know we were appointed to destruction? How seldom we may have even felt we needed God!
The sin of doing what we wanted and failing to accept what we needed, is an awful sin. Living by our feelings can be costly. Over and over we are warned in the holy scriptures,
Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonor their own bodies between themselves: Romans 1:24
Forty two times the word lust or lusts is used in the Bible. Its meaning is desiring something that is forbidden. Because of our sinful nature we often are seeking or desiring something that we are not supposed to. This is sin and God forbids it. There is a penalty for sinning and the cost is high.
God forbids it because it will hurt us and we don't even know it. We can't see past the moment of desire. But God knows what is best. Our fallen nature demands to be satisfied, but we are told to resist the appetites of the flesh that are contrary to the will of God. Re-read our text scriptures again. It begins by saying, "flee."
Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him. But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death. Do not err, my beloved brethren. James 1:12-16
All of us will be tried. And there is a scripture that says,
There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it. 1 Corinthians 10:13
There was a way to escape youthful sins, but we did not avoid them. We plunged right into them, disregarding the consequences of them. How many of us would like to go back and live life over again and not make those foolish mistakes. Thank God there is forgiveness through our Lord Jesus Christ.
And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, Revelation 1: 5
Remember how Joseph fled when approached by Potiphar's wife? That was the proper way to respond to her advances. But, remember how Ananias and Sapphira succumbed to lying and fell dead before the Apostle Peter? Their sin was costly.
Unchecked lusts can and will get us into trouble. When God says something is wrong and we think we can get by with it, how sadly mistaken we are. There would be far less heartache and tears if we had controlled our youthful lusts.
Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul; 1 Peter 2:11
Did you realize these lusts of the flesh were warring against your soul? They are trying to keep us enslaved to sin and the destruction of our soul. Behind this is also the powers of darkness who suggest we must fulfil our desires or we will not be satisfied. That we could miss out on something important.
For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another. Titus 3:3
We are encouraged to follow after righteousness. Learn to live the way the Lord says in His Word. God knows what is best for us and He is trying to save us a lot of pain. Righteous living will bring blessings from God. It will produce peace and contentment in our hearts. It will save us shame and embarrassment and make us a better witness for our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
So young people should be aware of the dangers of the youthful sins. When the Bible teaches it is sin, it is sin before God who knows all about what we all do. We who are older can praise the Lord for all he has done for us.
If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us [our] sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:8-9
The sins of youth often lead to a shortened life, or broken lives. As I have mentioned, much hurt is experienced by countless many who have indulged in things that should have been avoided. How sad the cost of our sin, but at the time we were not willing to listen to wisdom from the One who knows. As a result, the best of life is often missed, and dreams or plans are ruined because of our sin.
The truth is we can blame no one but ourselves. We are the ones who are held responsible for our sins of disobedience. We assumed since everyone else was doing it, that it was all right. How mistaken we are.
The great deceiver deceives us and we are caught in our own actions. We have believed his lie, and too late we realize how foolish we were. Once we have broken God's laws, we can not undo what we have done. Sure, we can ask forgiveness, but we must pay for our disobedience. There are consequences for our sin and we cannot wish them away, even though, through the paying for consequences of reaping what we have sowed, we still have the hope as a child of God that he will be merciful in how he chastises us.
Many of us were raised in church and surely this constrained us to some degree. But, many are not raised in church and therefore, they often live as if there is no God. They may have little or no warning of the danger of their youthful lusts. They are like sitting ducks to the shooter.
Let me ask you this question, do past sins trouble you? Sins of your youth or adult life, do they haunt you? Don't you wish you could push a button and they would be gone? But, you can't! Even so you can have forgiveness and God can give you peace in knowing they have been washed away. Still, in our memory we too often recall these times when we were unwise in what we did.
God will forgive all who ask in the name of Jesus Christ. Don't live with unconfessed sin, when today there is forgiveness and cleansing through the blood of God's Son.
Heavenly Father, I pray that all of us would be more careful about sin in our life. That we might desire, above all things, to please you by living godly among men and before you. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen, Preacher