Are the pews at your church looking a little bare? Well, researchers from Barna are arguing this might not just be because more people are opting for online services. Speaking of self-identified Christians aged 18–29 in the U.S., they suggest the effects of the pandemic on the church might “push larger numbers of young people to abandon Christianity or churchgoing.” This age group has already been leaving the church in droves for years.
Barna president David Kinnaman says,
I actually think we're going to see an increasing number of people who've lost connectedness with their faith community, with their usual rhythms and practices . . . We know that 22% of young people today are what we call “prodigals.” They lost their faith entirely. That number grew by double from 11% 10 years ago. So what it will look like in 10 years is hard to know, but we think it's going to actually accelerate that problem.
The article then cites statistics that show that, of self-identified Christians aged 18–29, 10% are “resilient” disciples, 30% are “nomads” who don’t regularly attend church, and 38% are “habitual churchgoers” who have “a minimal relationship with God.” It seems likely that as these young people fall out of the regular habit of attending church in person, they will eventually disconnect from their church entirely.
I believe the events of 2020 are a warning to the (by and large) lukewarm church that God's people need to be raising up generations with the foundation of God's Word beginning in Genesis.
I believe the events of 2020 are a warning to the (by and large) lukewarm church that God's people need to be raising up generations with the foundation of God's Word beginning in Genesis. They need to be equipped with apologetics to answer the attacks on Scripture that can cause doubt and put people on a slippery slide of unbelief.
Sadly, much of the church has resorted to entertainment, performance-oriented singing groups, and shallow teaching that will not stem the exodus of the younger generations from the church. Also, much of the church has compromised Genesis with man's pagan religion of evolution and millions of years and has refused to stand on the authority of God’s Word. Without God’s Word as the authority, the church will not be effective in discipling believers!
I pray this year will be a wake-up call for the church to return to God's Word as the absolute authority, beginning in Genesis.
This item was discussed yesterday on Answers News with cohosts Avery Foley, Bryan Osborne, and Tim Chaffey. Answers News is our weekly news program conducted here at the Creation Museum and broadcast on my Facebook page and the Answers in Genesis Facebook page. We also covered the following topics:
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This item was written with the assistance of AiG’s research team.
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