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1 John 2:14: Fathers and Young Men

1 John 2:14
[14] I write to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one. (ESV)

When I was a child I spent a lot of time talking to those who were much older than me.  As a pastor's son, I was at the church long before it started, and found that one of the best ways to spend my time was to talk with the Senior Saints who also arrived very early to church.  The conversations I had with those great men of God have been an encouragement to my faith to this very day.

The Apostle John talks about old men and young men in this verse.  He does not praise one and criticize the other, but rather says encouraging words about both of them.  It is important to recognize that we never reach a point where we know everything.  And we are never in a position where we cannot learn from someone else.  One of the greatest tragedies in our society is young men who have no regard with those who are more experienced in their years.

"I believe that when an elder dies, a library is burned: vast sums of wisdom and knowledge are lost. Throughout the world libraries are ablaze with scant attention." 
- Elizabeth Kapu'uwailani Lindsey

The Apostle John speaks of the older men as those who know God.  There is something to be said about one who follows the Lord for decades.  They have a knowledge of God and an intimacy with him that can only be had from time and experience.  John also talks about the young men being strong and having overcome the evil one.  What we see here is wisdom and strength.  Both are not only important, they need to be combined.  The young and the old need to learn from one another.

Young or old. Strong or wise.  We need each other.  If you are young and strong, spend some time with the older saints and learn from their wisdom.  If you are old, be reminded that the strength that the young have is still for you.  We need each other!