The Youth’s Instructor


March 9, 1893

Words to the Young


“Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life.” There is a daily work for us to do in fighting the good fight of faith. We should seek God in earnest prayer, watching thereunto with holy endeavor that we may keep the way of the Lord. While thus watching we are not to keep worrying about ourselves, to keep looking at our weakness, and studying our inefficiency. We are to look away from self to Jesus, and put our trust in him as our personal Saviour. We are to let him take care of our growth; for the work is to be done, “Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith the Lord of hosts.” The Lord will attend to the growth of the seed, and we are to keep our minds stayed upon Jesus. He will send the bright beams of the Sun of righteousness into the soul, which will impart beauty and fragrance to the spiritual life. He will give to the character the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which in the sight of God is of great price. YI March 9, 1893, par. 1

Let every youth ask himself, “Under whose banner am I serving? Am I standing under the blood-stained banner of Prince Immanuel? Am I a faithful soldier of Jesus Christ, who has paid the ransom for my salvation by giving his own precious life? If I am not under the banner of Prince Immanuel, where am I? To whom do I belong?” You are either under the banner of the Prince of light or under the banner of the prince of darkness. Jesus has said, “He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad.” It is important that we know whether we are on the Lord's side or serving on the side of Satan. He who ventures to use his God-given talents to become an agent of Satan risks his soul's salvation. YI March 9, 1893, par. 2

I entreat the youth who may read these words to place themselves entirely on the Lord's side. There is nothing that can keep you away from God but a rebellious will. Place your will on the side of God's will. If you are in the service of the enemy, you are under the power of a hard master. For your own soul's sake, repent and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, that you may offer unto the Lord an offering in righteousness. YI March 9, 1893, par. 3

All who are on the Lord's side are to confess Christ. “Ye are my witnesses, saith the Lord.” The faith of the genuine believer will be made manifest in purity and holiness of character. Faith works by love and purifies the soul, and with faith there will be corresponding obedience, a faithful doing of the words of Christ. Christianity is always intensely practical, adapting itself to all the circumstances of actual life. “Ye are my witnesses.” To whom?—To the world; for you are to bear about with you a holy influence. Christ is to abide in your soul, and you are to talk of him, and make manifest the charms of his character. YI March 9, 1893, par. 4

The fashionable religion of the time has so molded character, that youth who make a profession of Christ scarcely mention his name to their associates. They converse on many subjects, but the precious plan of redemption is not made a theme of conversation. Suppose that as practical Christians, we should change this order of things, and “show forth the praises of him who hath called us out of darkness into his marvelous light.” If Christ is abiding in the heart by faith, you cannot keep silent. If you have found Jesus, you will be a true missionary. You are to be enthusiastic in this matter, and let those know who do not appreciate Jesus that you have found him precious to your soul, that he has put a new song in your mouth, even praise to God. YI March 9, 1893, par. 5

My young friends, will you begin your Christian life as those whose hearts are warmed with the love of Jesus? You will never know how much good you may do by speaking tenderly sensible, serious words regarding their soul's salvation to those who do not claim to be children of God. On the other hand you may never know until the judgment how many opportunities to be Christ's witnesses you have left unimproved. You may never know in this world the mischief you have done to some soul by your little acts of frivolity, your cheap talk, your levity, which was wholly inconsistent with your holy faith. YI March 9, 1893, par. 6

It is true, you may feel a sort of anxiety for the souls of those you love. You may seek to open to them the treasures of truth, and in your earnestness shed tears for their salvation; but when your words seem to make but little impression, and there is no apparent response to your prayers, you almost feel like casting reflection upon God that your labors bear no fruit. You feel that your dear ones have special hardness of heart, and that they do not respond to your efforts. But have you thought seriously that the fault may lie in your own self? Have you thought that you are pulling down with one hand that which you are striving to build up with the other? At times you have permitted the Spirit of God to have a controlling power over you, and at other times you have denied your faith by your practice, and have destroyed your labor for your loved ones; for your efforts in their behalf have been made of none effect by your practice. Your temper, your unspoken language, your manners, the repining state of your mind, your want of Christian fragrance, your want of spirituality, the very expression of your countenance, has witnessed against you. YI March 9, 1893, par. 7

I urge you, youthful Christians, to think of these things most seriously; examine yourselves whether indeed you are a student in the school of Christ. Jesus says, “Learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Let all who associate with you see that you love Jesus and love the souls for whom he has died. Let it be made manifest that the precious truth sanctifies your life and character, and is to you a source of constant, unfailing joy. Let others see that the love of Jesus reaches from your heart through your whole life. YI March 9, 1893, par. 8

Never underrate the importance of little things. Little things supply the actual discipline of life. It is by them that the soul is trained that it may grow into the likeness of Christ, or bear the likeness of evil. God help us to cultivate habits of thought, word, look, and action that will testify to all about us that we have been with Jesus and learned of him! YI March 9, 1893, par. 9

Mrs. E. G. White