We came across this story while looking through the Christian Post for a topic to write upon.
Can a church survive without young people?
On the face of it the answer seems to be “no,” according to the Leadership Network, a Christian nonprofit ministry headquartered in Dallas, Texas, that says engaging millennials is the most important decision a church can make regarding its future.
Where is the faith in God to sustain and continue to populate the church? It seems that particular ‘Christian’ organization has taken their eyes off God and forgotten the verse where Jesus said ‘if I be lifted up I will draw all men unto me’. The most important decision a church can make is to correctly engage Christ and seek and teach the truth in love. Not to target different groups of people and place their hopes on fallible human beings.
The church needs to focus on all age groups and not get caught up in this idea that certain groups are more important than any other. The supposed millennials need adult leadership to lead them to the correct faith and how to the live the Christian life correctly. We do not place them on their own and give them great responsibility when they are not ready to handle great responsibility. Nor do we put undue pressure on young people, but aid their development so that they can handle undue pressure.
Pinning the church’s survival on a group of fallible, sinful people is not a smart move and it is not biblical teaching. When Jesus told the disciples that ‘he would make the fishers of men’ he did not restrict that objective to just the young people of his time. He wanted all men, no matter their age or label to be saved. The church survives because they follow Jesus correctly. It does not survive when it looks to worldly ideas to keep its doors open.
This group is a progressive bunch who are the most racially diverse generation with 60 percent anglo and 15 percent immigrants; the most educated with more college degrees than any generation in history, and the most single.
The church does NOT need people who are progressive. It needs people who are obedient to God’s word and do not seek to alter it to fit their own selfish desires.
Rainer said, “Of these people, 75 percent of them became Christians before the age of 14. … If we really look at the data and are objective, we will look at our preschoolers and children and become intentionally evangelistic. If you don’t have a plan to reach these children, you’ve blown it,” he concluded.
I do not know who died and made Ranier god of the church but he is one of the most distracting people in church leadership today. By ‘distracting’ I mean that he takes people’s eyes of God and places them on ideas that have little to do with God. We have not blown it if we do not evangelize children. We need to evangelize everyone and have strong leadership in place to teach new converts correctly so that they do not fall away as time goes by,
We are not a numbers church but a quality church. This means we let God worry about how many people will be saved while we focus on produce real disciples who know the truth and can defend their faith properly.
Leadership Network’s Eric Swanson said millennials don’t want a “guided discussion” where the conclusions are already predetermined, and since they don’t subscribe to the concept of lifetime employment with a company they want to be able to contribute from day one, which is a very positive thing when developing a leadership pipeline, he explained.
They cannot contribute until they know how to contribute correctly and in line with scripture. That takes training and if the millennials do not want to be trained then they are of no good to anyone. Good leadership depends upon training future leaders correctly and patiently. One cannot lead if they do not know where they are going, how to get there correctly and how to guide people away from trouble and traps. Being young is not a criteria for good leadership
Based on Discovery No. 3, millennials will actually cause churches and pastors to be more authentic, participatory, externally focused, inclusive and more diverse
No, all people do that no matter their age. Al they have to do is ask the right questions and make the right observations. Then diversity is not a biblical criteria for a good church. If a church does not have members of all different nationalities then that is not necessarily a bad thing. Striving to meet a false idea about how to have a good church takes the eyes of the church off Jesus and on to a human idea. Jesus never said you had to have a diverse church but he did say to reach out to all people.
In reading this article I find that the author and the people interviewed do not support one thing they say with scripture or a correct use of God’s word. This is evidenced by the last line of the article where it says:
Based on his research and the findings of other scholars and theologians, Swanson concluded that “a church without millennials is a church without a future.”
Where in the Bible do both God and Jesus teach that idea? The church is not built upon groups with weird labels but upon Jesus and Jesus will bring people to the congregation not a group of young people who are ‘hip’, ‘cool’, ‘modern’ or ‘progressive’. The church will survive because it is made up of people of all ages and lacking on one group is not a death sentence.
But what is troubling is the idea that the people interviewed for this article do not point people to Christ and instruct them to follow his leading; they all say follow our thinking instead. There is nothing biblical in that thinking and that should motivate believers to ignore such ‘leaders’ and seek those who will keep their eyes on Jesus and the truth.
The church follows the instructions of God not those church leaders who have long stopped listening to him and sought their own ideas about how the church should function. They have forgotten that the church belongs to God and that he is the one who directs its path.