What About My Relationships?

What About My Relationships?

Date: 10/15/2010 
What About My Relationships?
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In 1974, February, 19-year-old patricia hearst was kidnapped from her apartment in berkeley, California. She was abducted by an urban guerilla group called the symbionese liberation army, or sla. After holding her for 2 months, she was able to persuade her father to give $6 million in ransom. But can you imagine her father's heartache when, after that ransom was paid, she decided to stay with her captors instead? Matter of fact, she even helped them with a bank robbery. Evidently, during the time of her captivity, they had persuaded her her family didn't really love her and she was better off with them.

And she wanted so much to belong that she believed it. You know, it makes you wonder what our Heavenly Father must think of us when he sent his son and paid a ransom for all of us to be saved and we prefer to stay in captivity. The devil is attacking every earthly relationship. And so it brings the question, can we get along? We're gonna talk about that in this episode of "M.I.Q.." How can I know that God is listening? Did I come from apes or prehistoric sludge? Can the Bible be trusted? What should I do with my life? College? Cars? A job? Can I ever be perfect? Can I make a difference? Do my parents need me? [Voices overlapping] "M.I.Q.," your questions, God's answers. During this episode, we will be taking a look at the important questions of family, friends, and romance.

Join us now for "M.I.Q.." Hello, friends. Welcome back to "M.I.Q.," Amazing Facts for teens. I'd also like to welcome those who are watching on television and online, across the country, around the world, welcome. Thank you for joining us again and it's not too late for you to send in your Bible questions. Go to M.I.Q.teens.

com. That web site is M.I.Q.teens.com and you can post your question online. You can also send a text message with your Bible question and the number is 760-523-2287. Now, during this series, we've been talking about life's big questions. Is there a God? Where did I come from? Can I trust the Bible? And we hope that after this series is over, you will continue in your relationship with God, keep searching for a deeper understanding and knowledge of his will for your life.

I'd like to invite our songs leaders to please come forward at this time. Thank you, kelly, for playing. And immediately following our theme song, we're gonna have zach do our opening prayer. Please stand as we sing. [Music] when I gaze up at the countless stars we're on an endless sea my mind may swim with questions bewildering to me but then I read the Bible and seek your face in prayer I'm satisfied remembering your loving grace and care whatever questions I may have whether great or small I know Jesus died to save me and that he forgave me Jesus is the answer to it all Jesus is the answer to it all I have so many questions I wonder in my heart how something comes from nothing when did forever start? Why can't I see your glory? Where is the promised land? I'll trust that you will lead me there if I can take your hand whatever questions I may have whether great or small I know Jesus died to save me and that he forgave me Jesus is the answer to it all Jesus is the answer to it all ♪ Heavenly Father, we thank you for this chance to come spend time with you, to come to these meetings, God.

Lord, we ask that you please be with Pastor Doug as he speaks to us. May it be your words and not his. And please touch all of us hearing these sermons here or across the world, lord. May you change us from the inside out, in your name, amen. Amen.

Thank you so much. Thank you, kelly, our singers, zachary for prayer. Welcome, everybody, to this presentation of "M.I.Q.," and that stands for most important questions. We've been working for a year now to try to coalesce in this program these lesson presentations along with your questions that will deal with the most important issues in being a Christian. And we're learning as we go, but I think we're making progress.

We are, Pastor Doug. Well, let's get to our questions for today. My name is nolo and my question is how do you know you know yourself well enough to be in a relationship? Thank you. I couldn't help but notice that nolo wants to know how do you know. How do you know when you're ready to be--sorry about that.

How do you know when you're ready to be in a relationship? Well, when your car insurance goes down, usually age 25, probably old enough to start thinking about it. No, I'm--it's something that you don't want to rush into. You know what I've often seen happen? Is there's so many opportunities to study, to be educated, to travel, to do mission work. And it's especially profound in the beginning of your life, during those teenage years and early twenties. You can do so much that once you do get into a relationship, often marriage, children follow and you don't have that same kind of freedom.

And so don't rush it. There's often a fear, "well, but if someone comes along, I've got to grab them now because I never know. Might be the only one that'll ever be interested in me." Don't believe it. You'll get smarter, you'll get better, you'll be more attractive. And so take your time is the main thing that I would encourage.

Thank you, Pastor Doug. We have another video question. Hi, my name's theodore, and I know it says in the Bible to respect and honor your parents, but what if they're abusive verbally or physically in some manner? Well, that, of course, makes things very difficult. And I think we all know that there's situations where a parent or a step-parent-- it could be physical abuse. It could be sexual abuse.

And if you're experiencing that, then you need to talk to somebody. It'd be great if there was another family member that you could open up to and see if you could get some help, but you know, the command to honor your parents does not mean that you need to break commandments of God. As far as possible, you need to be respectful. Now my dad had a drinking problem and he would be verbally abusive. But you know, I was never disrespectful to him even though there were some anger over those things that were happening.

And so you need to have wisdom to balance out those feelings that you might have to know where to get help and still respect your parents. There may be times when you don't listen to a parent because they're asking you to break a commandment of God. And God, your Heavenly Father, comes first. All right, I think we're ready for our next question. We have a question that's coming from the web site and it is, how do I know when I'm ready to give my life to Jesus and get baptized? Very good question.

I think everyone here knows that Jesus said when we follow him, that part of that commitment--baptism is like making the decision. It's the ceremony by which we commit ourselves to Christ. Last words of Jesus were, "go ye, therefore. Teach all nations, baptizing them." Obviously, the last words of Jesus should be a first priority for Christians. They said to Peter, "what do we do to be saved?" He said, "repent and be baptized.

" And even in John 3, Jesus said to nicodemus, "unless you're born of the water and the Spirit, you cannot enter the Kingdom of God." So if you have made a decision to be a Christian and you're old enough to understand the basic components of the gospel, and I think every--all the teens who are watching certainly are old enough. Bible tells us to repent, to believe, to be taught the fundamentals of the Christian commitment, and then you make that commitment. And it's done publicly, just like a marriage, 'cause you don't want to be ashamed of Jesus. And maybe we'll have more information on that in another presentation, but very important. I hope some of you are praying about baptism and surrendering your lives to the Lord.

All right, we have another video question at this time. Hi, my name is Malachi, and I would just like to know, in the end times, Jesus said he's going to protect us. But then again, he does say we are going to be persecuted, so is he talking to Christians as a whole or is he talking to--talking about individual people? I'd just like to know that. Thank you. Well, really, that is a very good question.

There are obviously promises in the Bible of God's protection, especially during the time of the plagues. He protected the whole children of Israel. All the plagues were falling on the Egyptians, and yet he shielded them. He protected and provided for them all through the wilderness. The very fact that we're all alive is evidence of God's protection.

What is the penalty for sin? Wages for sin are death. We're alive, why? Jesus has intervened. Even those who don't believe in Jesus are alive because of his protection. But Christ says when we make decision to follow him, you know, there's tribulation in life. You may be persecuted.

We know that some have lost their life for the faith, but so many times God has miraculously intervened to protect them. Now in the last days, when the seven last plagues fall during that time of trouble, he will protect his people then just like he did the children of Israel when those seven plagues--or ten plagues fell on Egypt. So God does still provide and protect on a daily basis, but sometimes we're persecuted. So it's a good question. There's a balance there.

All right, I think we have time for one more question. This question is from compton, California. I'm in a relationship, but I'm not sure how to end it without hurting feelings. Well, the very fact you're thinking that you need to end it, make up your mind to do it. You may not be able to do it without hurting feelings.

When people get involved in relationships, then, you know, sometimes there's torn roots. And you just need to accept that. I tell you, it's a lot better to experience some hurt feelings early in the stages of a relationship that you know isn't right than, you know, wait after years and marriage and then go through the tremendous--the violent tearing of a relationship in a divorce. So if the Holy Spirit's speaking to you and you know it's not right, just pray for courage to bite the bullet. Sometimes in the Bible, because God loves us, he tells us the tough truth, but it's the truth.

And if it's not working, it's not right, then you need to be honest with that person and tell 'em that. All right, well, thank you, Pastor Doug. Let's see, I think we have one more question that we can get in and we'll take a look at that. This is one from the M.I.Q.teen web site. It's when is the ideal age to get married and the appropriate age to date? You know, the best age to get married is right around retirement 'cause then you got a lot of time to spend together.

When you're--they say your brain isn't fully developed until you're 25, which is incidentally when your insurance rates start going down. So you start dating at 24. I'm teasing you right now because we're gonna deal with that in our lesson tonight. Stay with us. We're talking about dating and some tips on what the Bible says about that in our presentation tonight.

All right. Thank you, Pastor Doug. Just a reminded to those of you who are watching. You can get more information at the M.I.Q. teens answer book. Go to the M.I.Q.teens.

com web site. You can order your very own. It's filled with fascinating facts and great information. And most of all, Pastor Doug, it's answers that make sense. M.I.Q.teens.

com. There it is. Pastor Doug's got the book. All right, thank you. Thank you, Pastor Ross.

I'm gonna follow you here for a second. You know, just when we were ready to come out, how many of you remember opening night we did an experiment? We just saw that thing still back there. Remember we were trying to see if you can make life by putting the different ingredients, remember? How many remember that? We--it's been sitting back there the whole time. So I thought I'd check. Oh! Hello.

No, nothing happened. Boy, that's ripe, though. It smells pretty bad. We'll check it again in a couple months. Good to see everybody here.

And tonight we're gonna be talking about relationships. We've been talking about just certain core things, what you think, caring for your body, and a very important part of life is how do we get along with each other, our relationships. Family, friends, dating, and some of those issues. You know, man was created in the beginning as a social creature. The first thing that God said that was not good in the Bible, he said it is not good that man be alone.

And that means man and woman, mankind. He's created us for relationships. We're created to be part of a family. You know, they say one of the greatest fears that teenagers have when they do surveys is not--of being alone. And one of the greatest desires of teenagers is to belong.

You know one of the reasons gangs are epidemic is because, as crazy as it is, as much violence and fear as there is in the gang, the desire to belong to something and be part of something seems to overpower that. And so we're gonna talk about some of those relationships and I want to get right into our study 'cause we've got a lot of questions. Question number one, how am I related to God? That's the most important relationship of all. And the answer comes to us from 1 John 3:1. He says, "behold what manner of love The Father has bestowed on us.

" Can't even describe it. He just says, "look at it." "That we should be called sons of God!" And of course, that means sons and daughters of God. That we would be adopted by God. You know, when Jesus became a human, he did something with humanity that he had not done with any other creature in the universe. He joined himself to us in a very permanent way by becoming a person.

When Christ rose from the dead, was he still a human? Did he still have a human body? And so how long is that going to be for? For eternity. He's at one with us. We've been adopted into the family of God. It's like a spiritual adoption. He doesn't treat us like stepchildren.

I heard one time these two brothers were enrolling first day of school and they gave the teachers their birthdates, and their birthdates were 1 month apart. And the teacher says, "you're the same age and your birthdays are 1 month apart, so you're obviously not twins. How does that work out?" And they smiled and looked at the teacher and they looked at each other and they said, "one of us is adopted." And she said, "well, which one?" She just caught herself. She was just wondering. And they said, "we don't know and dad said he can't remember.

" And that's sort of how it is with our Heavenly Father. He just completely adopts us as if we are his own. He loves us with the love that he has for his own son because Jesus gives us his own character and righteousness. And so no one's gonna love you more than that. You become part of the family of God.

All right, we're gonna get into question number two, then. What does God think of me? Now you think, "oh, he knows who I really am, so he must not think very highly of me." When we accept Christ because he gives us credit for his own character, he then looks at you that way. And he really can. Jeremiah 29:11, "for I know the thoughts that I think towards you, says the Lord." Now listen, this is the Lord talking to you. This is good news.

God says, "I know what I think of you." Now you might be wondering, "I wonder what my friends think of me. I wonder what my teachers think of me." What's the most person-- important person in the universe to be concerned about? What does God think of me? You know, Jesus tried to hammer this into--I'm not done with the verse, but I just want you to think about what I'm about to say. Jesus tried to hammer this into his generation when he started preaching. He talked to all the hypocrites and he said, "you do everything because you want people to look at you. You pray so people will look at you.

You fast so people will look at you. You give so people will look at you. All you care about is the praise of men." And he said, "and you don't think about what God thinks of you." Who should we live for, the praise and attention of people, our friends, or God, the one who gives us life and can give us eternal life? So what does God think of you? He said, "I know the thoughts I think towards you, says the Lord." Now you insert your name here, whatever your name is. "Thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope." God is not your enemy. God is in your favor.

You see, the devil has voted against you, God has voted for you, and now you have the tie-breaking vote. If you believe in God and you believe that he loves you and you can trust your life to him, you got a future and you've got a hope. That's good news, isn't it? It is to me. So we can have this relationship with God. They're telling me that we gotá a text question that's ready.

I feel spiritually dry in my relationship with God, what should I do? Good question. First of all, in every relationship, because we're humans and our emotions change and we get tired and circumstances change, you're gonna have waves and ebbs and flows. It doesn't mean God stops loving you. He's consistent, but we go up and down. Marriages sometimes have their ebbs and flows.

Relationships have that. Not everybody's always feeling bubbly and at their best. But in your relationship with God, there's things you can do to improve how strong you feel and that spirit-- spiritual connection. Very important three things. I told you this--these are the secret weapons.

Pray, talk to God all the time. Anything you can do to remember, practical things, that's okay. I heard about a girl that used to throw her shoes under her bed every night before she went to sleep. She'd throw 'em way under there and someone said, "why do you do that? Do you think someone's gonna steal your shoes?" She says, "no, I got to get on my knees to get them out. That makes me think to pray.

" And so, whatever you got to do, remember to talk to God. Make appointments with him. Schedule him in your alarm on your computer so it says, "boop, time to pray." Read the Bible. Make up your mind to get in a Bible reading program where you do it every day. I got it on my computer.

Every day I read my Bible. I'm at a different place all the time and it nurtures my relationship with God. There's so much media bombarding young people these days that you need to compensate for that by feeding on the truth. And then share your faith. Let your light shine.

As you tell someone else about Jesus, it changes you. And so those are three things you can really do to revive your relationship with God if it's getting a little dry. All right, we're gonna move on to question number three. Why does the Bible say that I need to honor my parents? Now you notice that idea about honoring your parents, it's not one of the ten suggestions or the ten recommendations. It's called a commandment and it's right in there with do not murder, do not steal, honor your mom and your dad.

Now that must have been a priority to God. You see, the success of a culture is built on those with knowledge and experience transferring that to those who are learning that don't have that yet. And your parents have lived longer. I used to think my dad didn't know anything. I used to think my mom didn't know anything.

And because I learned a few things they didn't know, I thought I knew more than them. But the general wisdom of life for negotiating the big issues of life, your parents have often been down that road and sometimes, even though they do things that may irk you, honor God by honoring them. Now you know what the promise is? Honor your mother and father, that your days may be long on the land. And brief definition of that, you want to stay alive? He says it'll preserve your life. It's interesting.

The countries of the world that have the longest lifespan, in asia, also have the greatest regard for their seniors. So I just think that's something to consider. Honor your mom and dad. I never did read the verse that goes with that. Ephesians 6:1-3, "children, obey your parents in the Lord.

" Now someone asked a question, "well, what if, you know, your--what if your parents are doing something wrong?" He says, "obey them in the Lord." I used to go to the movies with my mom. She was a film critic. And even after I got past the age of 10 or whatever it was for the child ticket, 'cause I was short, she said, "doug, just lie." It was my mom telling me to lie. Well, at that point in my life, I didn't really care. But then after I became a Christian, mom asked me to fudge on the truth, I said, "mom, I can't do that.

I'm a Christian now. I love you, I respect you, I want to honor you, but I gotta honor God first." And so that's what it means. Honor your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 'Honor your father and mother,' which is the first commandment with a promise, 'that it might be well with you and that you might live long upon the earth.'" Even at times it's just driving you crazy. Your mom and dad, you might be thinking, driving you crazy.

And keep in mind we got five kids and six grandkids, so I know a little bit how it goes. Two of our boys at home right now, teenagers. Hi steven, Karen. Karen's my wife. She's not one of the children.

And nathan. Hopefully they're watching or I just waved to all these people. But, you know, in families sometimes we can irritate each other. Dad's not always a saint. Kids can think dad's not being fair or whatever.

But when you honor them, you please God and that's the one ultimately that we need to answer to. Number four, what does it mean to honor your parents? Well, it means loving them. By the way, you can choose to love them. You may not always feel loving. I remember one time my mother got so irritated with me, she took me by the throat.

And you'd understand better if you knew me at that age. I actually don't blame her for that. She took me by the throat and I'll never forget she said, "I love you!" She wasn't very strong, so I wasn't worried about her choking me to death. I was about 13. She said, "I love you, but I don't like you very much.

" And I've heard kids say before, "I hate you," to their parents or their--i feel so bad. One time, my brother and I got into a fight that was so bad. Mom was gone, we were home alone. I think it was over a comb. Look at me now.

I was fighting over a comb. And I said, "I wish you were dead." Now my brother is gone. He's been gone for years. And you know, I've always rued the day that I said that to him. Sometimes in a fit of anger, even in families where you love each other, you say really dumb things that you may not mean.

Choose to trust and honor your parents, be respectful in the words that you speak to them, and love them. I heard about a man that-- a general conquered this city and they were gonna burn the city the next day. And he told two brothers that had shown some favor to the conquering general, he says, "because you guys have been reasonable," says, "I'm gonna let you go into the city and I'm gonna let you carry out all of the valuables that you can carry in your arms." So they ran into the city and they came out pretty soon. One was carrying the mother and the other brother was carrying The Father. And what would you carry out? You know, a lot of people say, "if your house is on fire, what would you grab?" A lot of people say, "well, I need the pictures of the kids.

" But they never say the kids. Oh yeah, but as long as I got the pictures. So, you know, we need to trust our parents and there's a balance. You know what a parent's job is to some extent? And every parent struggles with how to do it. We're preparing you for independence.

From the time you're born, you are 100% dependent. Matter of fact, someone once described a baby as an apparatus with a loud noise at one end and no responsibility at the other end. And from that point when you enter the world and your parents are doing everything for you, they are teaching you--and you're also very selfish creatures when you're born. You realize that? You don't care if it's the middle of the night and you're crying and mom is tired. You don't care.

You just--you say, "I got a plumbing problem. I want some food." And you don't really think about how other people might feel. That must be taught. If you're never taught to think about how other people are feeling and putting other people ahead, you're very self-centered. You become very selfish.

You need to learn to share, to love, to care about others, 'cause it doesn't come natural for babies. That's why--you ever heard someone say, "oh, you're being a baby." What do they mean by that? Just thinking about yourself. And so parents' job is to raise you out of that and to prepare you for more and more independence, where ultimately you fly off on your own. And hopefully you return to the nest every now and then. You've got a relationship.

You know, president herbert bush, someone asked him, "what was your greatest accomplishment in life?" Now he had a lot to talk about. You know, world war ii veteran, survived being shot down. President, cia director, a lot of things. You know what he said his greatest accomplishment was? He said, "my kids still come home." So you want to maintain a relationship with your parents. And I know at times it can be tough and there are spells where you feel like, "boy, they have just--they've been suffocating me with control and rules and finally I'm off to college and whoopee!" And you forget to call for a month.

Honor your father and mother. Stay in touch with them. And you know, with eagles, eagles aren't like some birds, where as soon as they jump out of the nest, they can fly. Or like a butterfly. First time, successful flight.

Eagles need to learn to fly and those fledgling eagles, when they're teenagers is really what they are, if they get out of the nest too soon, they'll drop to the ground and they can't climb back up like an owl. An owl can climb back up the tree with its talons. An eagle can't. Fifteen percent of all adolescent eagles do not survive learning to fly because they maybe try too soon before all the feathers are grown. So their timing is very important, and that's why you want to trust your parents.

And I admit it. I'm sometimes that way. Parents might be too protective too long. Sometimes one parent is a little more permissive and the other one is a little more lenient and you always want to go to the permissive one. Then you go back to the other and say, "yeah, but dad says it's okay.

" You ever do that before? Uh-huh, working mom and dad against each other. That's tough. I did it too. I know, it's standard operating procedure for kids. So what does it mean to honor your parents? You got to love 'em.

It says here in the verse, Proverbs 23:22, "listen to your father who begat you, and do not despise your mother when she is old." You want to respect 'em, you want to honor them, and remember them. And also care for 'em even when they're old. Question number five, how can I resist peer pressure? Now I don't know about you, but if I'm to be perfectly honest, I like to be liked as opposed to liking to be loathed. Would you rather be liked or loathed? Most of us I think want to be liked. We--you know, you don't want to just live for what everybody thinks of you.

And we want to fit in. We want to belong. You know, this is especially keen for me because some of you have gone to a new school before and you don't know anybody and everybody else have got relationships and you feel like you're on the outside. I don't know if any of you have ever been through that before. I went to 14 different schools and half a dozen different summer camps, where I was dropped into these strange environments.

I didn't know anybody. And i--sometimes I really pushed the envelope trying to get someone to be my friend or be liked. And I know what it feels like. But you know what the most important thing is? You make up your mind, "lord, I have given my life to you. I am here first and foremost to represent you.

I am gonna be the person you want me to be. I will be nice to people and I will hope along the way I can make some friends." Now there's some Scriptures that give us some guidelines on how do you resist peer pressure. Proverbs 12:26, "the righteous should choose his friends carefully, for the way of the wicked leads them astray." Pick your friends carefully. Someone said one time--well, my dad used to always quote this. If you sleep with dogs, you're gonna get fleas.

And so you want to pick your friends carefully. Exodus 23:2, very simple, "you shall not follow a crowd to do evil." If everybody's doing the wrong thing--you know, the reason that Daniel is a hero in the Bible and Elijah are heroes in the Bible and Joseph, they didn't do what everyone else was gonna do. They decided first, "I'm gonna find out what God wants and I'm gonna put God first." In the end, lot of people loved and respected them, but there was a time when they were outsiders. And so don't be afraid of that. You know, I'll tell you a little trick.

If you go buy a car--now, when I bought my first car by myself, I wish I knew then what I know now. I was young, I'd gotten a loan approved by the bank. I Marched in there, I paid the sticker price. I probably paid 10% or 15% more than I should have paid because I just didn't know. You know what they did? After they saw I was interested and I had a bank approved loan, the salesman brought me into his little office and he brought in two other guys.

And they all bein' real friendly and nice to me, saying what a great car it was. And the peer pressure of two or three people ganging up on me, they said, "oh man, this is such a great deal. You got to buy this." "Oh, okay." And I bought the car. I kind of got pressured into it. They--this is a tactic they use because we are influenced by what a group thinks.

They've done a lot of experiments about this and they're taken one person in a group in a scientific study, they've dropped him into a classroom where everybody in the class will say something that is crazy, morally wrong, and they'll all say, "yeah, that's really the right thing." And they find, little by little, most young people will acquiesce. They'll go along and say, "yeah, that's what I think too." They allow the crowd to manipulate them when they've put in these tests. You got to think for yourself what right and wrong is according to the Scriptures. All right, question number six, what are some proven Bible principles that will help you to pick good friends? All right, we're gonna go through this. By the way, just a few quotes on friends.

A friend is a person with whom I might think out loud. Isn't that nice? Isn't that true? A friend is someone who comes in when the whole world goes out. Do you have some friends? Everybody needs a few real friends. A friend is one who knows all about me and they like me anyway. That's a good answer.

All right, a. I'm gonna give you a little list of letters on how do you pick a friend. Do not be friends with a hothead. Scripture? "Make no friends," and this is Proverbs 22:24-25. "Make no friends with an angry man, and with a furious man do not go, lest you learn his ways and he sets a snare for your soul.

" People who have got bad tempers often commit crimes or they do outrageous things. And if you're standing too close by when they start to boil over, you may get burned also. And you start learning their ways. So you want to avoid people that have--don't know how to control themselves, aá bad tempers. By the way, demon possession.

You ever heard a person say, "I lost my temper"? Well, you lost it. Who do you think found it? I believe when you lose control, someone else gets control. And when you lose your temper, at least temporarily you are demon possessed. I stand by that. I have seen a lot of people, when they lose their cool and they say, "I blew it.

I lost my temper," and it's just like they're berserk. It's like they're demon possessed. People that have--by the way, one more statement. It says the more shallow the pot, the quicker it boils. People who lose their tempers too quickly, usually a little shallow.

You got some depth, you don't boil over so fast. Isn't that right? So that's one tip. Find friends that aren't gonna boil over like that. B, avoid showoffs, people who always want to be the center of attention and have everybody notice them. Here's a Scripture for that.

Proverbs 16:19, "better to be of a humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud." You know, the greatest, most powerful people in the Bible, someone like king David, I mean, he wasn't afraid to go against giants. It takes courage to be humble. And yet he was a humble man in so many ways. And so that's a good principle to follow. Braggers.

You know what the Bible says? "A haughty spirit goes before a fall." I've got a scar under my left eye. You can't see it now 'cause it's covered by wrinkles. I will show you I got scar on my left hand. Cut myself right down to the bone when I lived up to the cave. Showing off.

I was going to spear a fish in front of some hikers up there. Showin' off, carving a stick, cut myself down to the bone. It's still numb today. I just stitch it up myself. Showin' off, doin' flips on a bike.

Girls were watching. That's what did it to me. I was tryin' to do a flip off a ramp on my bike, bike landed on my face. It cut me under the eye. Had to wear a patch for a while and this is now my bad eye.

Cut my left foot. Some people were there. I was gonna dive off the rocks into the pool of my cave and I'd been living at the cave for a year. Someone had put a glass gerber baby food jar in the creek. I'd walked across it so many times.

I didn't see it. I stepped on the glass, cut my foot open. Showin' off, showin' off, showin' off. Had to stitch that up myself, too, 'cause I was up in the mountains. It was numb.

I didn't feel it. Haughty spirit goes before a fall. You got someone always showin' off, you better keep your distance because they're gonna fall and they might hit you on their way down. So don't pick friends--try and encourage your friends with, you know, Christian principles. But for your own development in life, some good patterns to follow.

Shun bullies. Bullies are not all boys. Girls can be bullies too. Is that right? And bullies aren't all with fists. Some people bully on the internet.

They bully with gossip. And there's a lot of ways. And so people who like to find pleasure in making fun of others, those are ones you want to avoid. Scripture for that, Deuteronomy 27:18. "Cursed is the one who makes the blind wander off the road.

" There's a curse on people who are taking advantage of the weak. You don't want to be around them. Avoid, answer c-- no, d, avoid users. People who are using drugs in any form. You think about it, why would you want to give someone a drug that's addictive? What would make you ever do that? Maybe it's because misery loves company and you want to take other people down with you.

And so anyone who's gonna be using, they're often trying to get others to use with them so it'll mitigate their guilt. And, you know, I'm speaking to myself because I used to use and I would give it to other people. Say, "oh yes, smoking's cool. Yeah, I really enjoy it. I'm not addicted.

I can quit anytime. You want one?" And I had some friends, I took 'em out drinking. I was able to quit, praise the Lord, and they never were. And last time I saw 'em, 20 years later, they were alcoholics. So you could influence someone's life forever by encouraging them to use.

And don't use yourself. So stay away from people using drugs or dealing with drugs. Habakkuk 2:15, "woe to him that gives his neighbor drink." And there, of course, that guy's smokin' something that looks suspicious. And answer e, choose smart friends. Find out people who are wise and that wisdom isn't always just because, you know, you got a lot of brainy knowledge.

Wisdom's also good judgment. Pick wise friends. And here's the Scripture for that. Proverbs 13:20, "he who walks with wise men will be wise, but the companion of fools will be destroyed." And so, you know, you can learn some of those things. Hang around with wise people.

Now this is the part you might be interested in. How can I be smart in my dating relationships? Well, once you get to be 30 years old and you're old enough to date--just kidding. You know what I am saying? Our culture is so bombarded with sex, it's just like shaking hands, that they're makin' kids that are 11, 12 years old start talking about dating. And you're thinking--as soon as they start to enter puberty, oh, must be time to start dating. And that's really crazy.

That's like a person wanting to drive a ferrari off the lot before they put the paint on it. You're growing. That's just a phase of growth. Don't rush your life. Well, I'll get into that in just a little more.

How do you--how are you smart in this area? Proverbs 4:23, "keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues or the springs of life." Guard your heart. It's really easy to start getting wrapped up in a relationship and have your heart all get bound up in somebody. And then, again, psalm 37:7, "rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him." Be patient. You know, by the time I was 23 years old, I had 3 kids. And so listen, please, to your elder here.

I wish I could go back. I love my kids, but I didn't know hardly anything. All of a sudden, I had the responsibility of raising three kids and, you know, I could barely tie my shoes. That's 'cause I was barefoot. And so, you know, you're-- I think back now and I thought, "boy, I thought I knew so much.

" And now I look back and think, "ah, I still--i was just a kid. I was just a kid." And I was thinking about marriage. I was thinking about family and all these things and didn't even have a job. So take your time is one thing. But I've got some other tips.

Matter of fact, they're telling me we got a text and then I'll give you some tips on dating. Let's--hopefully this text question's gonna be relative to our subject here. Grand prairie, Texas, I know where that is. Is it okay to lie to save somebody's life? What do you think? I'm just gonna put that to the audience. I know what I think, but I'm curious what you think.

You're gonna save someone's life. Is it okay to lie? All right, now let me tell you a story. One of the commandments says you're not to bow down and worship graven images. King makes a law that says everybody's to bow down and worship an image or they're gonna die. Daniel and his three friends said, "we're gonna stand up.

" Did they do the right thing? Isn't that a little extreme, to stand up just over a little commandment like--i mean, you know, to save your life. Just when the King plays the music and everybody bows down, fix your sandals and say, "I'm not worshiping the image. I just--my sandals are loose here. I'm just gonna get down." And just look like everybody else. If it's a command of God, how serious is that? Oh, I could go on a whole lawnchair.

I think that you make up your mind, "I am going to obey God's commandments no matter what." Because you open the door to say a little bit of lying is okay and you're gonna find that door gets wider and wider. And say, "oh, it's just a white lie and oh, I didn't want to hurt their feelings." And pretty soon you don't know what truth is anymore. If it's a commandment of God and if Jesus is the truth and the truth will set you free, make up your mind that you're gonna tell the truth. Now I know you're probably thinking I'm crazy, but that's why I'm up here teaching right now. I'm gonna teach you the Bible.

And it is--you know what? It is radical to be a Bible Christian. It takes courage to follow the Lord. And I don't expect everybody to say, "you know, I want to be a Bible Christian." But--oh, enough about that. Get back to dating. An easy subject, right? You know, what are some tips for your dating relationships? Mrs.

Batchelor's been reading a book on teens and dating and 'cause we still, like I said, have two teens at home right now. And she found a great book called "hooked." And the subtitle is "how casual sex is affecting our children." And this is based on scientific study from a couple of doctors that have--two or three doctors that wrote this book together on what's happening with chemicals in the brain when you get involved emotionally or physically with another person. And they included in their book some tips and I probably, with their permission, ought to post these online. And by the way, these are practical suggestions to offer young people to help them avoid sexual entanglements. One, if you've made up your mind you want to be a Bible Christian and maintain purity until you're married, according to the Bible, according to the commandments of God, find good friends with the same commitment about sex.

Have friends that are with you on that so you're not always swimming up creek. Talk about your fears and temptations. Lean on each other for strength. Two, write down your commitment. Write it down.

Say, "I've made a commitment to abstain from sexual activity until I get married." As radical as that might seem in our sex saturated culture right now, it's still the truth. Marriage and intimacy like that is made for the marriage relationship. Three, practice assertiveness. Take time to talk about your rights and how you expect to be treated. If you are in some dating relationship, establish some guidelines right at the beginning.

Don't wait until you're parked in the dark on lover's leap all by yourself to say, "let's talk about boundaries now." Because at times like that, boy, you've kind of let the horse out of the barn. You want to establish those things. Especially if you're gonna have a relationship with someone that is that intimate, you ought to be able to say, "let me tell you where I am on the subject of dating and here are the boundaries. Don't touch anything below my eyebrows." Right? [Laughing] number four, make sure your values are known to anyone you date or grow close to. Don't hide how you feel.

We're in a world where everyone starts to tease. I went to a military school and here I was, 11 years old, and all the boys are going around, bragging, saying, "oh, this guy's a virgin. He's a virgin. Are you a virgin? I'm not." And it's like they're putting on everybody--these little kids are under this tremendous pressure to somehow achieve sex, like I said, like some kind of animal that can Mark it off on the scoreboard. Just kids.

This pressure that the devil is putting on this culture that you, you know, there's something wrong with you if you want to be pure. Who do you want to impress? A world that's sick with sin or God? Are you gonna go with your feelings or your faith? And so don't hide how you feel about it. Five, don't get involved with someone who doesn't share your values. Right out of the gate, you want to know, "hey, look, they're in a different place and this is not gonna end well if I start getting emotionally attached to this person because they don't share my values." And you know what a common mistake is? Young people get involved in dating and it's often true with a girl, the guy's very aggressive and, you know, he says, "oh yeah, but we'll get married someday, so let's start being intimate now. I really love you.

" And everybody wants to be loved. "And I want to show you how much I love you." And they got all these arguments and they're very clever and creative. Girls, don't trust 'em. They're all animals. [Laughing] you want to maintain purity.

The idea that, "well, but I'm gonna get close to him and I'll change his views," famous last words. "Yeah, well, I know how he feels now or how she feels now, but as we get close, I will teach them how I feel and they'll feel that way too." Don't even go there because sometimes when you do that kind of evangelism, you end up being the one that's converted. Because they've got nature on their side. You're already fighting the desires in the body that are there and so--okay, moving right along. Six, plan your dates to avoid difficult situations.

Like I said, you know, do things with a group. It's when you get off by yourself, not enough light, gets late, you're tired, your mind is cloudy, and instead of your cerebral part of the mind governing your activities, all of a sudden it's the animal nature takes over. And so don't get yourself in those situations where you're gonna have problems. Avoid alcohol and drugs. We've already talked about that.

Your resistance to temptation is lowered when you've been inebriated by some kind of substance like that. Introduce your date to your parents. Oh, listen to that groan sweep over the crowd. What will they think? Trust 'em. Some countries of the world, you don't even get to date unless they approve it.

Tell you what, let's go back to parents arranging the weddings. I mean, the marriages. Number eight--you know, I've been to india and some countries where they do that and it's amazing. Do you know their divorce rate is a fraction of what ours is? Interesting. Number nine, this is the last one on the list.

Limit the amount of physical contact. Nothing below the eyebrows or above the elbows. So it keeps you out of trouble. If you want, if we have permission--i think we--if we give the credit, we can probably post this list online. But we got to move along with our questions here.

Talking about dating relationships, I think on number eight, does the Bible have any practical dating tips for me? Yes. It says in 1 Corinthians 13, talking about love, "love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself." By the way, life suffers long. Patient, that's what that means. Be patient. Don't rush things.

That's where a lot of people get in trouble. Does not behave rudely. Now we're almost out of time and I want to get to number nine here, so I'm gonna jump over there right away. How do I respond when someone hurts me? Show of hands, have you been hurt? Anyone ever done anything to hurt you? Have you ever felt betrayed before? You told somebody something, you trusted them, and they betrayed your trust? Or you thought they were a friend and then they were talking about you and they put you down or said something unkind about you. You know, one of the principle things you want to do as a Christian is learn to forgive.

You know, it's perfectly normal for friends to be nice to their friends. What makes it unique is when friends forgive their enemies, when someone hasn't been kind to you and you're still nice to them anyway. And I know that's hard. First of all, you make friends with Jesus. He is your best friend.

And keep in mind-- you might say, "how can I ever forgive them?" There's a promise in the Bible. It says, "love your enemies," Matthew 5:44, 45, "bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, pray for those who despitefully use you and persecute you, that you might be the children, The Sons of your father who is in heaven." How can I forgive? In the Lord's prayer, Jesus added one comment on the Lord's prayer. Said, "forgive us our debts as we forgive those, our debtors, or forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us." We can't do that without God's help. Jesus said, "if you do not forgive every man his trespasses, neither will your Father in Heaven forgive you." By the way, when you don't forgive others who have hurt you, who are you really hurting? You're just hurting yourself. Let it go.

Don't look back; look forward. And you know what? You'll find peace in your relationship with God. You know, sometimes an obstacle between us and God is unforgiveness. He is willing to forgive you so much. You look at the cross, Jesus was betrayed.

He knows how it feels, and he forgave. And if God can forgive like that, he can give us the power and the grace to forgive others. Do you believe that? He is the key to love and healing in all of our relationships, parents, family, schoolmates, dating, whatever it might be. Turn to Jesus. He's the key.

[Music] thank you for watching this episode of "M.I.Q.." During our next presentation, we will take a look at how to break those bad habits, whatever they are. See you then. [Music] video games, television, shopping, they all eat up precious time. Well, why not take a much needed timeout and get connected with God with the most important questions dvd series, a boxed set that includes ten 1-hour presentations and a 126 page companion guide to the most frequently asked questions on God, the Bible, and living a Christian life, presented by tv evangelist Doug Batchelor. To get your copy, visit store.

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