Updated: Jul 25
Are We Losing Our Youth? Did We Ever Have Them?
In recent years I have often heard it said in churches and from other organizations that would be considered to be Christian based, that “we are losing our kids” to the world, or to the liberal left, when they go off to college and other such endeavors. What they are usually inferring is that young adults are somehow losing their Christianity, or are “leaving the faith.” I do agree that many of the ideals, world view concepts, and values being taught in the public colleges and universities are indeed quite contrary to what most would consider as traditional or “Christian” principles and values, as well as to the actual true Gospel message of the Bible. I also believe that much of the academic content that is being taught in these public (and many "Christian") colleges universities and colleges is agenda based, and flat out false and potentially dangerous. I believe that all of the indoctrination coming from these places can indeed be socially damaging. But are these educational institutions truly to be blamed for the “losing of our youth” in terms of them "leaving the Christian faith, etc.? I would argue that if we were actually able to truly “lose” them in this respect, that we never had them to begin with.
As is repeatedly stated all over this website, salvation is by grace through faith in Christ plus nothing else, PERIOD. Eternal life is a free gift, and true gifts cannot in any way whatsoever be earned. When it comes to salvation, there is no score board, scale or any other such thing; Jesus paid for our sins in full when He died for our sins according to the Scriptures, He then was buried and rose again from the dead on the third day according to the Scriptures. This is of course the Gospel. We receive the irrevocable gift of eternal life and are therefore sealed with the Holy Spirit; born again when we believe it.
With the above being said, when anyone believes the Gospel, including our kids, they receive the gift of eternal life; they possesses it and it cannot be taken away or lost (John 3:16, 6:47, Romans 11:29). Jesus says of those that are His that no one shall snatch them out of His Hands (John 10:28), that includes any cynical “intellectual” atheist and/or leftist college professor.
Am I condoning or doubting the often successful attempts at brainwashing that certainly seems to go on at these places? Absolutely not. The problem is that we have a great number of young people, including those who are “churched” and come from “Christian” or conservative families, etc., along with all of the others who have come from more “diverse” backgrounds, who again are already lost, and then are listening to the drivel of these supposedly academic authorities and taking it hook, line and sinker. Yes, even our truly saved young people can to some degree be lead astray for a time, which of course damages their testimony, at least for that time, and of course those decisions will bear consequences of one sort or another. We should indeed be aware of, and even vocal about these things and talking to our youth; saved as well as unsaved, about them, preparing them for life. There will be deceptive and tempting potentially destructive ideas to be dealt with, with or without Leftist universities, throughout their lives.
The main point of this post is to point out the need for us as believers to be sure that we are clearly presenting and talking about the true Gospel in our homes and in our churches (and everywhere else, for that matter) on a regular basis, in the context of many situations, making sure that our kids understand it and believe it. If they have this faith; the real faith, they will have a foundation that will stand against any of the evils of this world, and we won’t be able to lose them. Greater is He who is in them (any believer) than he who is in the world (1 John 4:4).
All too often families are churched and religious, but not none of them are saved; those kids are endangered of being sucked in; they are already lost (John 3:18). All too often kids have parents who are saved who rely on the church to take care of this need, but the church has failed to do so for one reason or another. Often the problem here is that the church that these parents are relying upon has no concept of the real Gospel, thus has no way to preach it, much less convince anyone to believe it. These youths too are already lost (John 3:18), and of course need to be found.
I say to churches: Don’t blame the universities. I say to families: Don’t blame the churches. Scripture admonishes those of us who have believed the Gospel and received the Holy Spirit and the free gift of everlasting life to teach that REAL Gospel to our kids and see to it that they know it, so they can believe it. It is not to be left to someone else. Parents, grandparents (or even siblings), don’t count on the church to get the Gospel to your kids (or siblings). Churches, don’t rely on the families to get the Gospel message to your youth. If all of us as believers are obedient and do our part to share the Gospel with our youth, they’ll truly get to hear the Gospel.
If any of us have truly had the faith “at one time,” then we still have it; we will always have it, and we can never leave it, and it can never leave us, even if we “want to” and rebel for a time. None will snatch our saved kids out of God’s hands. They cannot go to Hell, even if they would somehow want to. Again, they may indeed have to bear consequences for sin…and hopefully learn from that experience, as is the case with all of us to one degree or another, but this is far from “losing” someone, especially in the context of eternity. The truly saved can never be lost.
The youth that are supposedly losing their faith aren’t any worse off than they were before, at least in terms of [not] having the gift of everlasting life. At best they were believing a subtly tainted and powerless false gospel, and therefore had nothing of any eternal value to lose to begin with. These individuals may be turning their backs on their relatively conservative and religious upbringing, but not on salvation, because they never had it to turn their backs on to begin with. They were never born of and sealed with the Holy Spirit, which is something that happens only when one believes (as in relies upon and trusts in) the Gospel (Ephesians 1:13). Religion without the Holy Spirit, whether it is called Christian or otherwise, is rather lifeless, dry, boring, enslaving, draining, depressing, frightening; parasitic may be a better term. It is no wonder many of these young adults are doing what they are doing, as they see doing so as a chance to be free of an imprisoning mindset that likely amounts to nothing much more than a rigid and/or inconsistent list of "do's and don't's" that one must adhere to out of fear of damnation.
Once again, in terms of our youth, if we truly have them, we can never lose them. God has promised that He will not let it happen. Let us truly do our part and tell them the Good news of the Gospel so they can never be lost.
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