Has Satan Captured An Entire Generation?
A few weeks ago I attended a national repentance service held in the BVI where I reside. Most of us as Christians strongly believe that our nation can only be healed when God’s people repent (2 Chronicles 7:14).
Many prayers of repentance were offered up to God but there was one particular statement in a prayer that broke my heart. The person prayed, “Lord, forgive us for releasing a generation who do not know God.”
For every generation since the beginning of creation, there was a mighty move or revival of God to harvest the new generation. Therefore, each generation has a responsibility to lead the new and younger generation to the Lord.
The Pentecostal movement was birthed in Los Angeles In 1905, by William J. Seymour. He began preaching in local churches that speaking in tongues was the first evidence of being baptized with the Holy Spirit.
Seymour’s congregation began to grow until it quickly developed into a great revival at Azusa Street in 1906. The revival attracted people from all races, rich and poor, and from other denominations.
They worshipped God in humility and simplicity and were not concerned about monetary reward. The revival was described as a return of the day of Pentecost of Acts 2 where people were speaking in tongues, the sick were healed and people were delivered.
The revival paved the way for other great revivals and evangelism in the USA and all over the world. These early movements help to convert the Silent Generation and Baby Boomers.
I was born in 1964 so I am part of Generation X. During my childhood I grew up listening to popular evangelists such as Billy Graham, Norman Vincent Peale, Oral Roberts, R. W. Schambach and Jimmy Swaggart.
I remembered attending Billy Graham crusades every year in my hometown in Jamaica and many people were saved and baptized at these revival meetings. These anointed preachers were members of the Baby Boomers and Silent Generations.
They preached the Word of God in many countries. Their daily radio and television broadcasts were successful in converting millions of people to Christ. This was the great move of God that converted my generation.
The children of Generation X are the Millennial Generation. They were born with the advent of internet technology.
God has placed the mandate in the hands of my generation (X) to lead the Millennials to Him. The best way to do this job is by teaching and mentoring because they learn better by these methods.
Have we been successful in carrying out this mandate?
But, it is not because of lack of trying, it is because we are using the method that the previous generations used to convert the generations that followed them. This method is through preaching and revival meetings.
Throughout the years we have been trying to recreate the Azusa street revival, and so far it has been successful in attracting mostly members of Baby Boomers and Generation X, but very little from Y (Millennials) and Z.
Consequently, we are losing these generations. The millennials are leaving the churches in droves and a new generation – the Generation Z – is following them closely.
Sadly, we (Generation X) have released an entire generation (Millennials) who do not know God.
But, has God released them?
According to a poll conducted by the Pew Research Center in 2014, over 80% of millennials both younger (born 1990 -1996) and older (born 1981-1989) believe in God but only 27 and 28% attends church weekly compared with 38% of Baby Boomers and 51% of Silent Generation.
The research showed a trend of decline in the younger generations who consider that religion is important in their lives.
Exactly why is this happening?
The Millennials and Generation Z are becoming despondent with the churches. They find it boring and many of them are looking to other forms of spiritualities such as astronomy, yoga, witchcraft, and new age movements to find meaning in life.
Barna Research found that 39% of Generation Z claimed they find God elsewhere while 20% said that God is missing from the church. The research at Barna and Pew found some startling reasons why interest in the churches is diminishing among the youth.
I have compiled the three top reasons.
1. Christians are judgmental and hypocritical.
The younger generations claim that Christians are insensitive to their needs and discuss them unfairly.
Barna states that over 80% of millennials think Christians are judgmental and 91% think they are anti-homosexual.
The younger generations also claim that there is too much pretense among Christians and they don’t practice what they preach.
2. The churches have become “cliquish” and operate like a social club or secular business organizations.
Most of these mega churches emphasize prosperity doctrine where money and material possessions are signs of blessings from God.
Based on my personal observation, the young people think that churches are segregated and organized like a secular hierarchical system where the Pastor and so-called First Lady are at the top of the pyramid followed by ministers, deacons etc with the mass of congregation at the base or bottom of the pyramid.
The young people see themselves as least among the base group.
3. The churches are boring and old fashion.
In my personal experience with my children and others, the younger generations are highly sensitive and they are easily offended if you shout at them.
They view preaching as someone shouting at them so they are quickly turn off as soon as the sermon begins. Thus, they find other ways to occupy themselves during the church service such as sleeping or playing with their cell phones.
How can Generation X right the wrong?
1. Teaching and mentoring the younger generations in love
Pastors should teach instead of preaching.
Preaching appeals to the emotions and the older congregation (Boomers and Z) are easily excited by a fiery message than the young people.
Teaching, on the other hand, appeals to your understanding and the younger generations respond better to a thorough intellectual message.
Pastors and ministers should make their sermons more interactive and try to involve the youths in these sessions.
Giving the young people more responsibilities in the church will keep them occupied in a positive way.
2. Remove the unnecessary titles such as “minister this” and “prophet that”.
As long as you know your gift and calling from the Lord just operate in it. You do not need constant validation from men.
Remember a pastor or minister is a servant to the people so humble yourself and serve the people.
Encourage unity and fellowship among the members similar to the days of the early church in Acts Chapter Three.
3. Wash your neighbor’s feet
The spiritual washing of your brother’s feet such as encouraging each other, helping in times of need is more important.
Solutions that the younger generations need to practice
1. Kill the pride
Children have a gentle and meek characteristic. Hence, Christ said that if we humble ourselves as a little child we will inherit the kingdom of God (Matthew 18:4).
However, as puberty creeps in and the hormones rage, the teens develop a strong dose of pride (haughtiness).
They believe that they know everything and somehow think that they are entitled to everything.
The spirit of pride will block you from receiving the message of salvation and from accepting help and mentoring from genuine people.
Generations Y and Z, you need to receive the spirit of humility and the mind of Christ (Philippians 2:1-11).
2. Practice self-control
3. Be proactive and read
Due to the rise of digital technology, with so many internet games and social media to occupy the young people, they no longer read books much more the Bible.
They need to read the Bible and as often as possible.
The younger generations need to be knowledgeable about the Word of God so that they will not be easily swayed by every wind of doctrine (Ephesians 4:14 )
I strongly believe that the internet and digital gadgets were conspired in the synagogues of Satan to distract the younger generation so that they will miss God.
The plot is to have them so enraptured and glued to their cellphones, the digital games, Facebook, Twitter, Instagrams, Snapchat and the other multitudes of social apps that they will not notice when Satan’s greatest deception is upon them.
Hence, it will easily overtake them and their precious souls will be lost.
What are some of these deceptions that are fast approaching and are possibly already present?
The false christs (Matthew 24:24).
The plot to crash the internet (the kingdom of man or the beast in Revelation 13).
For detailed revelation about this beast read the book: Harm Not The Oil And Wine.
Look at this video on YouTube.
Do you think it is a funny comedy that is meaningless or do you think that it is a plot of the enemy to destroy the younger generations?
Think about it and write your opinion in the reply box.
Also, what are other reasons why the younger generations do not want to attend church?
How can we harvest the Millennials and Generation Z for God?