Will religion be gone in just one generation? Well, according to Lawrence Krauss, it could be. Krauss (a professor at Arizona State University), an atheist known for fighting aggressively against any religion except his own atheistic one (he actively campaigns against Christianity in particular, including joining a protest at the opening of our Creation Museum in 2007, and recently gave a presentation to skeptics in my home country of Australia. He was asked a question about religious education. His response was that educators should “present comparative religion as a bunch of interesting historical anecdotes, and . . . show the silly reasons why they each did what they did.” He argues that just like slavery virtually disappeared in the United States in one generation, so can religion if “we can plant the seeds of doubt in our children.” He declares, “Change is always one generation away.”
Now, Krauss probably doesn’t realize it, but the idea that “change is always one generation away” is certainly a biblical one. Scripture is full of examples of a generation following the Lord but the next generation abandoning Him and worshipping idols (or a generation turning from worshipping idols to following the Lord). For example, in Judges 2:7 we read, “So the people served the LORD all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders who outlived Joshua, who had seen all the great works of the Lord which He had done for Israel.” But, tragically, “When all that generation had been gathered to their fathers, another generation arose after them who did not know the LORD nor the work which He had done for Israel. Then the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD” (Judges 2:10–11). Instead of serving the Lord, the next generation served the gods around them—and Israel was lost in just one generation! And this is just one example among many throughout the Old Testament.
Why Are They Leaving?Sadly, we are seeing this very thing happening right before our eyes in the Western world. Two-thirds of youth are leaving churches and often the faith. Why are they leaving? Well, according to research we did with the respected America’s Research Group and published in my book Already Gone, these kids are leaving because secularists—like Krauss—have “planted seeds of doubt in our children.” Rather than being taught that they can trust the Bible—beginning in Genesis—our children have been taught “Bible stories” (the word story today often means fairy tale/fiction), or even been taught that they can compromise with what the world teaches about evolution and millions of years! Instead of Scripture being our absolute authority, many churches and Christian leaders have elevated man to the absolute authority and have placed man’s words over Scripture. Our kids are recognizing this hypocrisy and are sadly abandoning the church and God’s Word.
In his presentation, Krauss said that he believes that secularists like himself “have an obligation” to teach the next generation to abandon religion (Bill Nye, TV’s “the Science Guy,” has also made similar arguments and you can read my response to him here). Of course, when he uses the word religion he particularly means Christianity—Krauss wants to indoctrinate children in his religion of naturalism (atheism). But, if this life is all that there is, then there is no ultimate hope or purpose, so why should Krauss even care what anyone believes? And what or who gives him this obligation to teach children his religion of purposelessness? Actually, it’s Christians who have an obligation to teach the next generation! In Scripture we are commanded to “train up a child in the way he should go” and are encouraged to “tell to the generation to come the praises of the Lord, and His strength and His wonderful works that He has done . . . That the generation to come might know them, the children who would be born, that they may arise and declare them to their children, that they may set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep His commandments” (Psalm 78:4, 6, 7). We are supposed to diligently teach our children about God’s truth and His works so that they will praise and obey Him. Sadly, instead of teaching our children about God’s works beginning in Genesis, the church has largely taught many children and teens about secular views on origins, and simply squeezed God in somewhere. And the result is a generation that questions the truth of God’s Word.
Reaching The Next GenerationKrauss (like famed British atheist Richard Dawkins) has accused Christians of forms of “child abuse,” because they teach children the truth of God’s Word. Actually, the real “child abuse” in this sense is when atheists like Krauss teach their religion of meaninglessness to generations of kids—and lead them astray from the truth of who they are, what their problem is (sin), and what the solution is in Jesus Christ. Read more about this topic here.
Atheists are becoming increasingly aggressive in trying to plant doubt in our children’s mind. And instead of equipping our young people with answers to these attacks, many people in the church are telling our youth they can believe much of what secularists teach! Christians who compromise with evolutionary ideas are actually helping atheists like Krauss lead coming generations away from the Christian faith. This has created a “house divided against itself” (Matthew 12:25) and it won’t stand—and we are seeing the effects of it across the Western world. We need to teach our children—the next generation—they can trust God’s Word from the very beginning! The history in Genesis is true, so the message of the gospel based in that history is also true.
I encourage you to equip yourself and your children with answers to the attacks of the world. Go to the Answers in Genesis website and check out the thousands of articles and hundreds of resources that will equip parents and kids to defend the faith against today’s secular attacks.
Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying,
This item was written with the assistance of AiG’s research team.