Monday, November 20, 2023

Don’t Watch the Church. Be the Church.

There’s a crisis in America today—a crisis much bigger than the dysfunction in Washington, much bigger than Covid-19, much bigger than high gas prices. It’s a crisis that has eternal repercussions.

For years, historians and researchers have warned us that Christianity is dying in America. Study after study has confirmed that belief in God, church attendance, and commitment to biblical values are ALL on the decline. In 2019, the year before the Covid-19 lockdowns, 3,000 new churches opened in America. That sounds great until you realize that 4,500 existing churches closed. And during the pandemic, the situation went from bad to worse.

Why? Researchers agree that the biggest reason is the growing number of “nones” in our country. In recent years, researchers have started using this term as a label for people who don’t claim any religion. Some “nones” are atheists; others are agnostics; still others say they’re religious but don’t identify with any specific religion. But it shouldn’t surprise you to learn that as the number of “nones” across America INCREASES, the number of church attenders DECREASES. Because more than 95% of “nones” don’t go to church.

Since the year 2000, the number of “nones” in America has grown dramatically across all age groups—but especially the younger generations. According to a 2021 Barna Group study, about half of Generation Z (those between ages 11 and 26) claim to be Christians … but around 30% of them claim no religion at all. Some studies show that number over 40%.

And here’s an even scarier number. According to Barna’s research, only 4% of those 11-to-26-year-olds have a biblical worldview. In other words, although over 50% of Generation Z claim to be Christians, only 4 out of every 100 actually believe the Bible to be the inspired Word of God and that Jesus is the only path to salvation.

That’s tragic. Worse, it didn’t have to be this way. Parents, to a very large extent, it’s our own darn fault. Not only have we failed to teach our kids God’s Word every day in our homes, we have failed to surround our kids with other Christians who are ready and willing to teach them God’s Word at church. We haven’t maintained our commitment to Christ’s Bride, the Church, and we haven’t taught our kids about commitment to church. And if you’re worried that “dragging them to church” will chase them away from God, believe me: There’s a much higher likelihood of them walking away from God if they’re not in church at all.

God’s Word in Hebrews 10:24 is clear: “Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.” And that begins at home. You’ve taught your kids to persevere in school work, in their chores and in their tooth brushing. Now, teach them to persevere in the most important way: Teach them to persevere with the Church to bring honor and glory to God. 

Dane Davis is the pastor of Impact Christian Church. Join us for worship on Sunday at 8:30 a.m. or 10 a.m. at 16209 Kamana Road in Apple Valley, or livestream us on Facebook or YouTube. For more information, visit

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