How many folks (especially in the church) do you know who are older than you? Any? Have you noticed that sometimes “older” individuals are not quite as “sharp” as they “used to be”? As a result, sometimes they are disregarded, set aside, and even disrespected. We need to be very careful in how we treat those who are “older.”
The New Testament addresses those who are “younger” and instructs to “submit yourselves to your elders” (1 Pet. 5:5). Elsewhere, we read, “Do not rebuke an older man, but exhort him as a father…older women as mothers…” (1 Tim. 5:1-2). Even in the Old Testament, God’s people were told, “Stand up in the presence of the aged, show respect for the elderly” (Lev. 19:32).
We need to respect their wisdom of life gained through years of experience. We need to respect them for who they are. We need to respect them the way that we ourselves would one day like to be respected (Luke 6:31). We need to respect them “because God says so”!