Saturday, August 5, 2017

Only The Young

I have had this Journey song in my head for the past several days now. Usually, in order to get the song out of this ancient brain of mine, I simply play the song and it leaves . . . but not this time. The chorus just keeps echoing, over and over again. "Only The Young Can Say." So I began searching for a meaning to this madness. I found it in John 3 when Jesus told Nicodemus, "You must be born again."

"That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ - John 3:6-7

When we are born again we become a new creation. We become young once more.

"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new." - 1 Corinthians 5:17

What is it like to become new again? To become changed? What is it like to have God's Holy Spirit living inside you? So many questions! But guess who has the answer?

"Only the young can say." Only those who have been truly born again can really say for sure.

Hmm. The song is still rattling around in my head. Maybe there's something else I missed? Hmm, as the song winds down we hear these amazing words of theological wisdom from Journey, "Is it heaven or hell? They know very well. Only the young can say . . ."

God's children DO know very well, if it is going to be heaven or hell. IF we truly believe, the answer is . . .heaven!

This week at work my friend and I have been talking about some of the young adults in our lives. We see them making rash decisions, having sex outside of marriage, doing drugs, getting drunk - and many of these "children" profess a faith in Christ. Yet, they don't act like it. Again I hear those words echoing in my head.

"Is it heaven or hell? They know very well."

Do they REALLY know? When someone becomes born again there is a change! There has to be! We just read about that in 1st Corinthians. The new has come, the old self is supposed to die. IF we remain unchanged after saying we believe, is that cause for concern? I think it is.

There are several possibilities for why we might remain unchanged after professing a faith in Jesus.
  1. Lack of Biblical knowledge. We don't know we've been changed. We repented of our sins and placed our faith in Christ but then no one is there to tell us what to do next. We say we believe but then we backslide into who we used to be. The pull of the world is too great and we get sucked back into it. We forget about Jesus as He gets pushed aside for our worldly desires.
  2. We walk away from God. Something happens in our lives. A death perhaps or some other really bad event, that makes us wonder if God really loves us or even cares about us. "How could God let my grandma die?"
  3. We get lost in religion. If we've been going to church "all of our lives" but have never fully trusted in Jesus as our Lord and Savior, have we become lost in the very thing that we thought was supposed to save us. God hates our vane repetitions in church (Matthew 6:7-9). Jesus detested the religious leaders of His day (Matthew 23).
  4. We never really believed in the first place. I had a kid once tell me that the reason they got baptized was "because everyone else was doing it and they didn't want to stand out" as someone who didn't "go along." That is not a valid reason!
Jesus told us that we must change and come to Him like little children. What did He mean when He said?

"3“Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven." - Matthew 18:3-4

Is our heart born again? Are we young, as a child, in God's eyes - our faith unobstructed by a "worldly" world view? This is important stuff here! It's heaven or hell, remember?

May we all approach God with a childlike heart and a faith that is not filled with conditions or laws. God is our Father, in heaven, and we are His children. Should we act like it then? No. We shouldn't be acting! Our faith should be real! God loves us . . . massively! Can we say that we love Him the same way? Like He is everything to us? Who can possibly live a life like that!?!

Only the young can say.

Only The Young - Journey

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