“Flee from youthful lusts,” Paul warned Timothy (2 Tim. 2:22, NASB). For Bible-believing Christians eager to live rightly, this has long been a key verse. We know that we can grant such youthful lusts no quarter in our lives. So we put filters on our computers, find accountability partners, read books, set boundaries, warn our children, and guard our own hearts, minds, and bodies.
Except most Bible translations have moved away from that phrasing in this particular verse. “Flee the evil desires of youth,” says the New International Version. The English Standard Version goes with “youthful passions.” Because while Scripture gives overwhelming admonition to flee sexual immorality, Paul seems to be warning Timothy about something else here, another wrongly ordered love—a sin—that destroys.