All people deal with the problem of aging in their own way. I suppose a navy man (or woman) might say “my ship is sinking without being torpedoed!” An army man might say “my camp has been invaded by a mysterious enemy that blows toxic dust on my sleeping body–I awake each morning to see more damage . . .” Actually this problem is not too worry-some in my 62nd year, but it’s a sure thing it will get WORSE.
Philosophers have said some interesting things about old age:
- Youth is a blunder; Manhood a struggle; Old Age a regret. Benjamin Disraeli
- Age steals away all things, even the mind. Virgil – Roman poet 70-19 B.C.
- Tobacco, coffee, alcohol, hashish, prussic acid, strychnine, are weak dilutions; the surest poison is time. Ralph Emerson
- Old age is the most unexpected of all the things that happen to a man. Leon Trotsky
- My second fixed idea is the uselessness of men above 60 years of age . . . Sir William Osler – British physician (This guy's pen is BRUTAL towards me . . .)
- Time makes more Converts than Reason. Thomas Paine (Tom Paine inspired the Dec. of Independence AND gave our country it’s name – U.S. of A.)
Does the Bible have anything to say about the “old age” problem? Yes it does. “Remember also your Creator in the days of your youth, before the evil days come, and the years draw nigh, when you will say, ‘I have no pleasure in them;’ before the sun and the light and the moon and the stars are darkened . . . the strong men are bent, and the grinders (teeth) cease because they are few . . .one rises up at the voice of a bird . . . terrors are in the way; . . . the grasshopper drags itself along and desire fails; because man goes to his eternal home and the mourners go about the streets.” Ecclesiastes 12:1-5
My wife & I have been living in retirement communities for over 25 years and have seen our senior friends and neighbors decline and die. My father was with us for a few of his last years. And even though he promoted a senior citizen romance, it just didn’t last very long. . . The coming of the grim reaper is a serious & sober fact of life. So what’s the point? Well, unless we can find the “fountain of youth” and restore/extend our years endlessly here on this planet, we should all move towards God’s answer to life, and old age.
According to Paul the apostle, “he made from one every nation of men to live on all the face of the earth, . . .that they should seek God, in the hope that they might feel after him and find him.” Acts 17: 26-27 . . . "Though our outer nature is wasting away, our inner nature is being renewed every day. For this slight momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison," 2 Corinthians 4:16-17 According to Christ, “Let not your hearts be troubled; believe in God, believe also in me. In my Fathers house are many rooms; if it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And when I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.” Thomas said to him, “Lord, we do not know where you are going; how can we know the way?” Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but by me.” John 14:1-5
Someone will ask, “how can that God & Jesus stuff be a panacea for anything, let alone old age?” Well, if the scriptures are a valid revelation of God’s mind, then we are placed here deliberately as a test of character. If we pass the test by reaching out to the risen Christ, God will BLESS and ENHANCE all phases of life – even old age. (That’s what the blood of Christ, and His Spirit is all about.) And realizing that our decline and demise is NOT the end, is a great comfort. It has been said “God's people die well.” I say they live well, grow old well, die well, then go to a better place to spend eternity. I’m counting on that. Choose Jesus, He is alive. See also “Fountain Of Youth.” Link #108.
Many other Titles: www.gospelnotes.net -- index is link 1 * * Fred J. Stone * *