The Youth’s Instructor


July 14, 1892

Words to the Young


In this age we are pained to see that children and youth look upon themselves as too far advanced to submit themselves to the control of their parents. When they reach the age of ten or twelve, they seem to imagine that to yield to parental authority would be an evidence of weakness, a sacrifice of their rightful independence. But instead of being capable of governing themselves, they are vacillating and weak in purpose. Their moral powers are feeble, and they have but little spiritual power. The reason why they are thus weak and easily led away by temptation, is that they do not imitate the life of Christ. They get above the simplicity of Jesus. YI July 14, 1892, par. 1

Instead of following in the footsteps of the divine Redeemer, they are filled with pride and self-esteem. They study inclination, and follow the bent of their unconsecrated minds instead of the teaching of the loving Saviour. They devote their time and the powers of the mind to that which will make a display, instead of seeking for the acquirement of a solid education. They think much more of sight-seeing, of exciting amusement, of having what they call a good time with their associates, than of following the advice of their parents, whose knowledge and experience make them wise in advising their children. YI July 14, 1892, par. 2

I present Jesus before you as the true pattern. He was the creator of the worlds, yet he consented to humble himself, to take upon himself man's nature, to live as a child, as a youth, in order that he might give them a perfect example. He was subject to his parents, obeying the commandment of the Lord which says, “Honor thy father and thy mother.” YI July 14, 1892, par. 3

There are many children and youth who see no attraction in Christ's life of humble toil and loving obedience; but it was for our sake, for our good, that he thus lived; for if he had chosen, he might have enjoyed the riches of glory. YI July 14, 1892, par. 4

Even after he had proclaimed his divine relation to the Father, saying to his mother, “Wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business?” he was still obedient to the claims of Mary and Joseph. For eighteen years after he had declared himself the Son of God, he submitted to a life of toil, of restraint, yielding submission to the authority of his parents. He practiced self-denial, and worked with Joseph at the humble trade of a carpenter, thus forever dignifying toil. When we look upon his patient self-denial, his shrinking from all notoriety, devoting himself to his daily labor in a humble sphere, what a beautiful light is shed about his life! How clearly is pointed out the path in which children and youth should walk. If the youth would become strong in mind, pure in morals, firm in spiritual power, let them follow the example of Jesus in his simplicity, in his submission to parental restraint. For thirty years his life was veiled in obscurity; yet Jesus was no less the Son of God in his lowly home, in his submission to his parents, than when God spoke from his eternal throne, saying, “This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.” YI July 14, 1892, par. 5

Mrs. E. G. White