I often stress the importance of teaching our kids to think biblically. Reaching this next generation is a huge burden to us here at Answers in Genesis because they are the church of tomorrow. They are our future pastors, missionaries, Christian leaders, gospel witnesses, seminary professors, and Christian parents. The state of the church over the next generations will largely depend on how the current and next generations handle God’s Word. And there is a lot of pressure from the secular world to treat the Bible in such a way that important doctrines such as creation, marriage, and the sanctity of life are compromised.
Sadly, the next generation of American Christians is becoming increasingly secular. As I detailed in my coauthored book Already Gone, over two-thirds of American young people will leave the church, many of them never to come back. And those who do stay, as I showed in my new coauthored book Ready to Return, think more like the secular culture than God’s Word and are confused about what the Bible teaches!
And this phenomenon isn’t just happening in America. We’re seeing this across the Western world. In Iceland, the church is “already gone.” According to a new poll, less than half of Icelanders identify as religious. The other half, obviously, are religious—as everyone has a religion (atheism, for instance, is a religion. When people say they are not religious, it usually means they don’t identify with a church denomination). And the younger generation in Iceland is the least likely to identify as religious, with more than 40% of young people claiming to be atheists (which means they adhere to the religion of naturalism—atheism). And 93.9% of those under 25 believe the big bang created the universe and 0.0% believe it was created by God. Zero percent! Not a single young person they asked said that God created the universe—not a single one.
Assuming that this poll gives a good indication of reality (and in my travels I tend to find this very same thing), this is incredible. It should remind us of the importance of passing the beliefs of our faith along to the next generation. Unfortunately, because that’s not happening in Iceland, that nation is becoming increasingly secular—even though its constitution states that the Icelandic Evangelical Lutheran Church is the state church. But the state church does not stand uncompromisingly on God’s Word. Last October, the church resolved to “wholeheartedly support same-sex marriage.” Usually compromise on marriage is preceded by compromise on the book of Genesis, and, if this is the case, as it likely is, then it should come as no surprise that none of the polled young people embrace creation.
As Christians, we need to diligently teach our children about the truth of God’s Word from the very beginning. Our kids are learning the secular religion of millions of years, evolution, and relative morality from government-run school, the media, museums, and social media—pretty much everywhere. Parents need to be intentional about teaching their kids to think biblically and to view the world through the lens of God’s Word. We also need to teach our kids through our example to be bold witnesses for Jesus Christ as we spread His gospel to people who desperately need the hope and salvation that Jesus freely gives.
We need to realize that the secular school system (even though there are some Christian “missionaries” in that system) is a religious institution. By and large, parents have handed over generations of their kids to the “priests” in the secularist churches (public schools) to be indoctrinated in the religion of naturalism (atheism).
I encourage you to learn more about reaching this increasingly secular generation in my new coauthored book Ready to Return.
Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying,
This item was written with the assistance of AiG’s research team.