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WorthyReading - Young Christian Survival Guide

WorthyReading - Young Christian Survival Guide

April 18, 2024

Although we live in challenging times of disbelief (by those who reject the Christian Faith) and unbelief (by those who’ve struggled to continue in faith), none of it is new to the Church. The Church has consistently had to face these challenges, though she has not consistently done it well. The Scriptures evidence this reality. Jesus and His Apostles actually warned this would be the case until the end of this world’s time.

Understanding what we Christians believe and why it is demonstrably valid has always been a great and  important challenge to each generation’s Faith transfer to the next. Extensive education and formal Bible training are not prerequisites to meeting this challenge. The Apostles, whom Jesus chose to be disciples were simple folk. However, through His simple tutelage they learned to apply careful thought, reasoning, and humble belief to the truth they had already heard prior to His appearance. In light of increasing opposition, modern believers should consider Paul’s directives to both Timothy (2 Timothy 2:15[1]) and Titus (2:1, 7-8[2]). While we are not all called to preach, we all are no less called to effectively share the gospel of Jesus Christ with our children and others we encounter throughout life. We should actively prepare our hearts and minds for effectively communicating the ‘reason for the hope’ we hold. We ought to do so not only based on subjective experience, but God’s truth-based rationale. In this way we can hand our children and others a sound Faith to satisfy their inquisitive minds and heart. We can equip them to understand, defend, and pass on the saving message of Jesus themselves.

Thankfully, helpful tools are available that easily bring this task within reach than existed even a few decades ago. One such tool is Donald T. Williams’ book, The Young Christian’s Survival Guide. Williams’ book directly addresses the alarming number of ‘Christian’ young people (and their parents) who are stumbling or have walked away from the Faith, having to ‘reconstruct’ it while searching for answers to important questions that had too long gone unanswered or unconsidered.

Williams encourages readers to ‘not check their minds at the door’ while addressing crucial questions like the believability of the Bible, historical evidence for Jesus, rationale supporting the biblical canon, reasonable proofs that what Scripture says is so, refuting beliefs about human evolution, the universality  of biblical standards and truth, and other essentials. He also helps readers confront questions about evils in the world from genocide, slavery, homosexuality, and the abuse of women, to eternal questions about Christianity being ‘the only way’ to God, His dealings with those who die never having heard of Jesus, the death of loved ones, and everlasting punishment.

Scriptural passages are cited throughout that provide opportunity for reflection as you talk through these things as you aim to equip the young people (and others) in your life.  We encourage you to seize this opportunity to strengthen your personal ministry to others.

[1] Be diligent to present yourself approved to God a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth.

[2] As for you, speak the things which are proper for sound doctrine…in all things showing yourself to be a pattern of good works, in doctrine showing integrity, reverence, incorruptibility, sound speech that cannot be condemned, that one who is an opponent may be ashamed, having nothing evil to say of you.