The Barna group released in October 2007 a new book by David Kinnaman entitled: UnChristian: What a New Generation Really Thinks About Christianity . . . And Why it Matters.
The title is rather provocative. At first glance at "UnChristian," you might think that it is a book that talks about the "UnChristian" world (non-Christians), and that our world is going further away from God. But in fact, the book shows how young adults believe that the church is moving away from Christ and his values.
The 18-29 year old age group that was surveyed gave these negative impressions about the church:
- too involved in politics
- out of touch with reality
- insensitive to others
- not accepting of other faiths
We need to digest these findings, and seek to learn from them. Jesus certainly did not seem to be viewed as anti any person, judmental, hypocritical, too involved in politics, out of touch with reality, old-fashioned, insentivie to others, or boring. The fact is, we are at times probably guilty of these as charged. Obviously, we still must take stands against immorality, and Jesus himself said that he was the only way to the father. We need, however, to uphold these truths in a loving way that does not feed into stereotypes.
It struck me that most all of these negative perceptions can be changed if we will just serve people and the community. A church that is helping the community and changing lives is not irrelevant. Who really cares about being "old fashioned," if these things are being done? A church that loves and cares for those with AIDS will lessen charges of being judgmental. And the church that serves will well stand up against any other "faith."
Jesus said that he did not come to be served, but to serve. Maybe that is why people were so drawn to him. If we want to reach the world today, we must serve our community and those around us.
Which of these negative impressions do you think are most valid? Which do you think are the least valid?
Jesus & Doubt
1 week ago