Tag Archives: Kinnaman

Gabe Lyons Sequel to unChristian | The Next Christian: The Good News About the End of Christian America

If you haven’t already heard, Gabe Lyons just came out with a new book touted as the sequel to his and David Kinnaman’s landmark work unChristian: What a New Generation Really Thinks About Christianity & Why It Matters.

Lyons’ new book is entitled The Next Christians: The Good News About the End of Christian America. I’ve already picked up my copy, and encourage you to as well.

It’s a good time to do so as I just received this email from Gabe:

This past week has been amazing. With your help, the book went to the top of Amazon’s ranking and continues to hold strong. To continue the momentum, a few generous friends are helping motivate people to buy and read The Next Christians.

Here’s the deal. If you buy the book (or already have) in the next few days you can receive over $70 in free gifts, which includes the following:

  • TOMS Shoes – $5 off any pair
  • To Write Love On Her Arms – 20% off any merchandise
  • Next Christians Audio Book – Chapters 1 and 2 read by the author
  • KAVI Film – Free viewing of Oscar-Nominated 18-minute short film on modern day slavery
  • Thad Cockrell Music – “Beauty Has a Name” and “Rosalyn” song downloads
  • David Hodges AVOX Music – “The War” one song download
  • Q Content Premiere Membership – Access to Qideas.org extensive library of content

Go to http://www.nextchristians.com to see details.

If you are willing, please share this offer with your friends on Facebook or Twitter.

Sample tweets below.

-Get TOMS gift card, TWLOHA Shirt, Free Music & a film when you buy The Next Christians now. http://ow.ly/2RH3T

-Buy The Next Christians http://tinyurl.com/NextXians now and get a ridiculous amount of free stuff. See http://ow.ly/2RH3T

I haven’t had a chance to read this book yet due to my school schedule and other reading assignments and don’t make a habit of blindly recommending books, but trust me: if this book is half as insightful as unChristian was, you’ll be happy you picked it up.

It’s on sale for $13.59+shipping on amazon right now.

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New Study: College-Aged Most Likely Group to Change Faiths

If you haven’t already signed up to receive The Barna Group’s monthly newsletter, you ought to do so.

The Barna Group is the same research firm that published unChristian: What a New Generation Thinks About Christianity & Why It Matters a few years ago (a “must read” for those working in the field of campus ministry).

Barna’s latest research reveals that about one quarter of those living in the United States move away from the faith they grew up with (be it Christianity, another religion, or no religion at all).

Among those who change faiths, two-thirds do so before the age of 30, the average age being 22.

David Kinnaman, President of the Barna Group and the man who directed this study, comments on the implications of this data:

“It is difficult for many faith leaders to relate fully to the spiritual lives of people who struggle with their faith, particularly those who are younger. Clergy are typically older than those going through significant questions about their faith and are less likely to have personally experienced a period of major faith re-orientation themselves. What’s more, not every person goes through a crisis of faith, so individuals who are going through spiritual transitions often go unnoticed. Staying in tune with people’s questions and doubts—at whatever age they occur—is an increasingly important part of being an influential faith leader.”

This is important information for campus ministers for two reasons:

1) This study strengthens the case of the need for focused, evangelistic efforts aimed at the college aged in our country.

2) This study highlights the importance of campus ministers and church leaders being willing and able to articulate their own story as it pertains to their personal faith formation, and to be honest in sharing past struggles, doubts, and victories.

You will not reach college students if you are unable or unwilling to relate to where they are spiritually. Intentionality is a must.

To view this study for yourself, click here.

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Teaching Toward a Biblical Worldview

The words on page 74-75 of Kinnaman & Lyon’s book, UnChristian: What a New Generation Really Thinks About Christianity … and Why It Matters, jump off the page at me every time I read them:

      The opportunities that outsiders have to hear about Christ and know Christians are nothing short of astounding [in the United States]. For nearly two decades, the Barna team has been exploring church participation among American teenagers. We consistently find that the vast majority of teenagers nationwide will spend a significant amount of their teen years participating in a Christian congregation. Most teenagers in America enter adulthood considering themselves to be Christians and saying they have made a personal committment to Christ. But with a decade, most of these young people will have left the church and will have placed emotional connection to Christianity on the shelf. For most of them, their faith was merely skin deep. This leads to the sobering finding that the vast majority of outsiders in this country, particularly among young generations, are actually de-churched individuals.

      In spite of the fact that many of them are currently disconnected from a church, most Americans, including two-thirds of all adult Mosaics and Busters (65 percent), tell us that they have made a commitment to Jesus Christ at some point in their life. This is slightly lower than the percent of older adults who have made such a commitment (73 percent). This is an amazing fact about our culture. The vast majority of Americans, regardless of age, assert they have already made a significant decision to follow Christ!

      Of course, this raises the question of the depth of their faith. If that many Americans have made a decision to follow Jesus, our culture and our world would be revolutionized if they simply lived that faith. It is easy to embrace a costless form of Christianity in America today, and we have probably contributed to that by giving people a superficial understanding of the gospel and focusing only on their decision to convert.

      At Barna, we employ dozens of tools to assess the depth of a person’s faith. Let me suggest one for our discussion: a biblical worldview. A person with a biblical worldview experiences, interprets, and responds to reality in light of the Bible’s principles. What Scripture teaches is the primary grid for making decisions and interacting with the world. For the purposes of our research, we investigate a biblical worldview based on eight elements.

      A person with a biblical worldview believes that …

  1. Jesus Christ lived a sinless life.
  2. God is the all-powerful and all-knowing Creator of the universe and He still rules today.
  3. Salvation is a gift from God and cannot be earned.
  4. Satan is real.
  5. A Christian has a responsiblity to share his or her faith in Christ with other people.
  6. The Bible is accurate in all of the principles it teaches.
  7. Unchanging moral truth exists.
  8. Such moral truth is defined by the Bible.

      In our research, we have found that people who embrace these eight components live a substantially different faith from other Americans – indeed, from other believers. What we believe influences our choices.

      Getting back to the issue of spiritual depth, if two-thirds of young adults have made a commitment to Jesus before, how many do you think possess a biblical worldview? Our research shows only 3 percent of Busters and Mosaics embrace these eight elements. That is just one out of every twenty-two young adults who have made a committment to Christ. (Although older adults are more likely to have such a perspective, it is also a small slice – only 9 percent – who do).

      This means that out of ninety-five million Americans who are ages eighteen to forty-one, about sixty million say they have already made a commitment to Jesus that is still important; however, only about three million of them have a biblical worldview.

Wow – those numbers are shocking!

Quantifiable research done over the course of many years including hundreds of thousands of interviews has enlightened us to this: the vast majority of young adults living in America today who claim to be following Jesus don’t have a grasp of the most basic Christian doctrines.

The eight elements listed do not comprehensively paint a picture of a disciple of Christ, but they do represent many of the basics.

After reading UnChristian for the first time a couple of years ago, I set a goal to do my best to make sure those learning from me adopt a biblical worldview. Meeting this goal takes intentionality. Before I simply assumed most people who’d been part of my church for a while (barring brand new Christians) understood the basics. I’ve since learned it’s a mistake to assume too much – one I doubt I’ll make again anytime soon.

I’m interested in hearing from others …

Do these numbers shock you? Are any of these eight topics ever tackled at your church? Have any of you come up with a teaching strategy to instill a biblical worldview in others? What’s missing from this list that needs to be added?

Love to hear your thoughts.

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