Sunday Morning 2/26/12

Posted by Sherry


WHY ARE WE LOSING THE NEXT GENERATION?
Ephesians 6:1-4
CBC 2/26/2012
  • varying statistics but we are losing between 75 & 88% of our young people
    • usually by the end of their freshman year in college
    • Glen Shultz - kingdom education/ 2002 SBC council on the family
  • Birthrate in America has fallen below Replacement Rate
    • replacement rate is 2.1 children per family
    • we are at 1.9 children/family
    • France is 1.5 children/family
    • our culture is dying one generation at the time
    • North African Muslims & Arab Muslims in France have a birthrate of 6.0 children/family
      • in 2 generations France will be a Muslim nation by numbers alone
  • The goal Americans shoot for...
    • one boy & one girl...2 children
    • unwritten rule...try for a third if you got 2 of the same kind 1st two trys
  • Sad Testimony
    • Americans exhibit mocking behavior when a lady comes in the church door with six children
      • “doesn’t she know where those kids are coming from?”
  • Put this together now...
    • we lose 75% by end of Freshmen year of college
    • we average 2 children/family
    • currently takes two Christian families in this generation to get one Christian into the next.
    • solution: we will increase the numbers by “evangelism”
    • Fact: it takes 43 Baptist to reach one lost person & bring them to Jesus
    • Christianity in America is dying one generation at the time
      • one home at the time
  • Research as to why...
    • intermarriage rates as believers marry nonbelievers & lose the faith
    • low birth rates
    • Christian education in the home
OUR SOLUTION:
  • hire Youth Pastors to make it better
    • Alan Reed, “Raising the Bar” “Over the last 30 years we have seen the largest increase in the number of professional youth ministers, youth ministry degrees being handed out and para church organizations designed to reach youth and we have seen the greatest decline in youth baptisms ever.”
WHAT IS THE BIBLICAL SOLUTION?
* TEXT -1CHILDREN, OBEY your parents in the Lord [as His representatives], for this is just and right.
    2Honor (esteem and value as precious) your father and your mother--this is the first commandment with a promise--(A)
    3That all may be well with you and that you may live long on the earth.
    4Fathers, do not irritate and provoke your children to anger [do not exasperate them to resentment], but rear them [tenderly] in the training and discipline and the counsel and admonition of the Lord.
  • God has a plan for multi generational faithfulness
    • that plan is the family
    • the goal of many youth ministries
      • to evangelize teenagers, disciple them and equip them to evangelize other teenagers
      • Problem #1: parents never mentioned
      • Problem #2: not youth ministries job
      • Who’s job to evangelize children? Church? No, Daddy & Momma
      • Who’s job to disciple children? Church? No, Daddy & Momma
      • Proper Mission Statement for Youth Ministry...
        • “We exist to equip and assist parents as they do what God called them to do and not the Church.”
  • THE HOME IS CENTRAL IN THE EVANGELISM & DISCIPLESHIP OF THE NEXT GENERATION
    • why are families not functioning biblically?
    • one reason is for 30 years the church has told the home,...
      • “We are trained professionals. Please don’t try this at home. You don’t understand your kids. Your kids don’t like you. Trust the Youth Ministry. Just drop them off now.”
    • Our goal is to think and act biblically about the next generation
  • CHILDREN OBEY YOUR PARENTS IN THE LORD FOR THIS IS RIGHT
    • context: paragraph before it “Husbands, love your wives.../wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord.”
    • it actually begins in Eph. 5:15 
      • 3 contrasts
      • 3 commands
      • 3 contexts
  • 3 CONTRASTS
    • #1 -15Look carefully then how you walk! Live purposefully and worthily and accurately, not as the unwise and witless, but as wise (sensible, intelligent people), 16Making the very most of the time [buying up each opportunity], because the days are evil.
    • #2 -17Therefore do not be vague and thoughtless and foolish, but understanding and firmly grasping what the will of the Lord is.
    • #3 -18And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery (Indulgence in sensual pleasures); but ever be filled and stimulated with the [Holy] Spirit.
  • 3 COMMANDS (How do you know someone is living the Spirit filled life? From vs18 & 3rd contrast THEY’RE NOT SITTING AROUND DRINKING COLD BEER)
    • #1 -19Speak out to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, offering praise with voices [[a]and instruments] and making melody with all your heart to the Lord,
      • a worshipful person is controlled by the Spirit of God
    • #2 -20At all times and for everything giving thanks in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God the Father.
      • a prayerful & thankful person is controlled by God’s Spirit
    • #3 -21Be subject to one another out of reverence for Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One).
      • a person who submits to proper biblical authority in their life is controlled by the Spirit of God.
  • 3 CONTEXTS
    • #1 -22Wives, be subject (be submissive and adapt yourselves) to your own husbands as [a service] to the Lord. 28Even so husbands should love their wives as [being in a sense] their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself.
    • #2 - 1CHILDREN, OBEY your parents in the Lord [as His representatives], for this is just and right. 2Honor (esteem and value as precious) your father and your mother--this is the first commandment with a promise--(A) 3That all may be well with you and that you may live long on the earth.4Fathers, do not irritate and provoke your children to anger [do not exasperate them to resentment], but rear them [tenderly] in the training and discipline and the counsel and admonition of the Lord.
      • A Child who is submissive to their parents is a child filled with the Spirit of God
      • to lead a child to be “Spirit Filled”, they must be lead toward mom & dad, not the Youth Pastor
      • how much they submit to the Youth Pastor is not a biblical indicator of the measure of their “Filling of the Holy Spirit”
      • to know the Spiritual Temperature of a young person look at how submissive they are to the authority of their parents, their spiritual authority.
    • #3 -5Servants (slaves), be obedient to those who are your physical masters, having respect for them and eager concern to please them, in singleness of motive and with all your heart, as [service] to Christ [Himself]-- 6Not in the way of eye-service [as if they were watching you] and only to please men, but as servants (slaves) of Christ, doing the will of God heartily and with your whole soul; 7Rendering service readily with goodwill, as to the Lord and not to men,
THE HOME IS CENTRAL IN THE USE OF THE 5TH COMMANDMENT
  • 2Honor (esteem and value as precious) your father and your mother--this is the first commandment with a promise--
    • 5th Commandment is the 1st of the horizontal commandments
      • first 4 vertical to God
      • next 6 horizontal to our fellow man
    • #1 on horizontal list says most important thing a child can be taught is to honor their father and mother.
    • this is the first commandment that comes with a PROMISE
    • 5th commandment not for the individual child but for the community of faith
    • Deut 6:4Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God is one Lord [the only Lord].5And you shall love the Lord your God with all your [mind and] heart and with your entire being and with all your might. 6And these words which I am commanding you this day shall be [first] in your [own] minds and hearts; [then] 7You shall whet and sharpen them so as to make them penetrate, and teach and impress them diligently upon the [minds and] hearts of your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down and when you rise up.
    • PARENTS - EVANGELIZE & DISCIPLE YOUR CHILDREN
    • this doesn’t mean “INCLUDING MORE PARENTS IN THE CHURCH YOUTH MINISTRY” either
    • God’s instruction are simple:
      • you are my people in a pagan land where they worship pagan gods
      • multiply greatly (have a boat load of kids)
      • evangelize & disciple those kids in your home so they don’t look like the culture around them
THE HOME IS CENTRAL BECAUSE OF WHAT GOD SAYS
  • 4Fathers, do not irritate and provoke your children to anger [do not exasperate them to resentment], but rear them [tenderly] in the training and discipline and the counsel and admonition of the Lord.
    • FATHERS, FATHERS, FATHERS.....
    • how do we get more men involved in church...?
    • this is God’s answer to that question
    • pretty clear - Father’s disciple your children
      • so that your children DON’T LOOK LIKE THE CULTURE AROUND THEM
      • today fathers are PUSHING their kids INTO A CULTURE that takes them further from God instead of CLOSER
        • when is sports practice and games held???????Wed. & Sun.
        • when you keep them out of church on Sunday and drink beer in front of them while on recreation instead....what does that say?
        • when you don’t “LOVE YOUR WIFE” & you do your own thing, what are you teaching your children?
        • GOD EXPECTS MORE FROM YOU DAD, & IS HOLDING YOU ACCOUNTABLE!
CONCL:
  • If Dad is not equipped to evangelize & disciple his children the YOUTH MINISTRY of the church needs to stand ready with the necessary information and tools to get Dad & Mom the help they need TO DO THEIR JOB!
  • Nehemiah Institute, Barna Research Group & National Study of Youth and Religion: 
    • less than 10% of professing Christian teens operate from a biblical worldview
    • less than 5% are theologically born again
    • our churches will continue to LOOK BIG, but an overwhelming majority of members will not be Christ followers
  • WHAT DO WE NEED TO DO?
    • get a biblical view of children
    • support a biblical mission statement for our Youth Ministry
    • don’t saddle our Youth Pastor with the responsibility of evangelizing and discipling YOUR CHILDREN! Allow him to assist you in DOING YOUR JOB AS HANDED TO YOU BY GOD.

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