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Youth

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Scripture characterises youth as a time of vigour and strength. It speaks, too, of the pressures and expectations of youth, warns about the temptations facing young people, and instructs the young about what is expected of them.

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The vigour of youth

Proverbs 20:29 NLT
The glory of the young is their strength; the gray hair of experience is the splendor of the old.
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Even youthful strength and vigour may fail.
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The duties of youth

To remember God

Ecclesiastes 12:1 NLT
Don’t let the excitement of youth cause you to forget your Creator. Honor him in your youth before you grow old and say, “Life is not pleasant anymore.”
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Psalm 119:9 NLT
How can a young person stay pure? By obeying your word.
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To respect the elderly

Leviticus 19:32 NLT
“Stand up in the presence of the elderly, and show respect for the aged. Fear your God. I am the Lord.
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To honour parents

Exodus 20:12 NLT
“Honor your father and mother. Then you will live a long, full life in the land the Lord your God is giving you.
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To obey parents

Proverbs 1:8 NLT
My child, listen when your father corrects you. Don’t neglect your mother’s instruction.
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To remain faithful to one’s partner

Proverbs 5:18 NLT
Let your wife be a fountain of blessing for you. Rejoice in the wife of your youth.
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Examples of godly young people

Godly young men

Samuel; David, fighting Goliath; Joash became king at the age of seven; Josiah became king at the age of eight; Jesus Christ at the age of twelve; Timothy

Godly young women

Jephthah’s daughter; Ruth; Esther; the virgin Mary; Philip’s daughters

The promise of youth

Israel’s youthful devotion

Jeremiah 2:2 NLT
“Go and shout this message to Jerusalem. This is what the Lord says: “I remember how eager you were to please me as a young bride long ago, how you loved me and followed me even through the barren wilderness.
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Hosea 2:14–15 NLT
“But then I will win her back once again. I will lead her into the desert and speak tenderly to her there. I will return her vineyards to her and transform the Valley of Trouble into a gateway of hope. She will give herself to me there, as she did long ago when she was young, when I freed her from her captivity in Egypt.
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Dying young as a sign of judgment

Psalm 89:45 NLT
You have made him old before his time and publicly disgraced him. Interlude
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Particular pressures of youth

The inexperience of youth

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Temptations facing the young

2 Timothy 2:22 NLT
Run from anything that stimulates youthful lusts. Instead, pursue righteous living, faithfulness, love, and peace. Enjoy the companionship of those who call on the Lord with pure hearts.
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Troubles faced from the time of one’s youth

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The sins of youth

Psalm 25:7 NLT
Do not remember the rebellious sins of my youth. Remember me in the light of your unfailing love, for you are merciful, O Lord.
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Disrespect for older people

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Dishonouring parents

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Persistent sinfulness

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The sinfulness of Israel’s youth

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Examples of sinful young men

the sons of Eli; the sons of Samuel; Absalom; Rehoboam; Manasseh
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