From violent video games filled with bloody action to blockbuster films that focus on teens fighting in a contest until only one "winner" survives, today's youth have been raised in a culture of death—even becoming desensitized to disturbing images and concepts.
It's impossible, says author and religion and culture expert Dr. Alex McFarland, to be embroiled in this culture of death and at the same time, embrace Christianity—the epitome of new life and hope.
McFarland speaks to and works with thousands of young people every year, and communicates to them the hope of Jesus Christ. In his newest book, The God You Thought You Knew: Exposing the 10 Biggest Myths About Christianity, McFarland dispels the myths and untruths about Christianity and replaces that with the truth of who God really is.
"Young people are leaving behind their faith at alarming rates, and it's no wonder," said McFarland said, who recently penned the column 'Valuing Life, in a Culture of Death' for CNSNews.com. "Very little shocks our youth anymore, as they are faced with violent images all their lives. We know that hope and life only comes from Jesus Christ, and His way of living is the only way. Through The God You Thought You Knew and events geared specifically toward youth, we hope to renew their faith in Christ and give them reason to embrace life in Him rather than hopelessness and death."
According to a new study released earlier this month by the Pew Research Center, young people entering adulthood are growing in the ranks of nonreligious adults. Millennials, the study found, are, in many ways, far less religious than their parents' and grandparents' generations.
"For example," according to Pew Research, "two-thirds of adults in the Silent generation say religion is 'very important' in their lives and that they pray every day, as do about six-in-ten Baby Boomers and more than half of Generation Xers. By comparison with older adults, Millennials exhibit far lower rates of involvement with religion. Fewer than half of older Millennials (adults now in their late 20s and early 30s) and roughly four-in-ten younger Millennials (adults now in their late teens and early 20s) say religion is very important to them and that they pray daily. And a majority of Millennials say they attend religious services a few times a year at most."
Oftentimes, McFarland adds, young people leave their childhood beliefs behind or shun Christianity altogether because of the myths and untruths they've heard about faith. In The God You Thought You Knew, available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats, McFarland works to dispel those myths with 10 truths:
- Myth #1: Christianity is intolerant and judgmental toward others.
Truth: Christianity teaches to love neighbor as self and to share the love of Jesus with others.
- Myth #2: Christianity cannot be true because of the evil and suffering in our world.
Truth: Christianity offers the best hope and power to deal with suffering.
- Myth #3: Christianity is untrue because it is based on faith instead of facts.
Truth: The claims of Christianity are based on historical facts that can be tested.
- Myth #4: Christianity has been disproven by modern science.
Truth: The latest scientific evidence points to an intelligent designer behind all creation.
- Myth #5: Christianity is not a religion for the educated.
Truth: Many of the world's top past and present scholars are Christians.
- Myth #6: Christianity is boring and would be a waste of my time.
Truth: Christianity is the most adventurous life a person can experience.
- Myth #7: Christianity isn't real because it didn't work for me.
Truth: The Christian faith is difficult, yet also the most rewarding way of life.
- Myth #8: Christianity is false because it is based on the Bible, which is filled with errors and contradictions.
Truth: The Bible is the most accurately preserved book in history.
- Myth #9: Christianity can't be true because it is based on a dead man coming back to life.
Truth: If the best explanation for the empty tomb of Jesus is the resurrection, then Christianity can be true.
- Myth #10: Christianity isn't real because a loving God wouldn't send anyone to hell.
Truth: God has made great efforts to make sure many will spend eternity with him.
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