Millennial moms and dads aren't passing a biblical worldview on to their children, according to research conducted by Dr. George Barna at Arizona Christian University's Cultural Research Center.
"Most of the parents of young children in America, if they were to die today, probably would not wind up in heaven," said Dr. Barna.
It's a bold statement stemming from his study that suggests American parents are experiencing a worldview dilemma. It says the overwhelming majority of American parents today lack a biblical worldview and a robust faith that they can pass on to their children, which could dramatically hamper the spiritual development of the next generation.
"Most people die with the same worldview in essence that they had at the age of 13," Dr. Barna said.
Which is why Dr. Barna is concerned and stressing the importance of sharing a Christian worldview with children. The study found while 67% of American parents with preteens identify as Christian, only 2% possess a biblical worldview.
"One of the most important things we learned about parents with preteens is that they don't believe the Bible is reliable or true, or relevant to their lives," said Dr. Barna. "They don't have the same view of God as given to us in the Bible. Five out of six of them are not born-again Christians, meaning they believe when they die and go to heaven — but only because they confessed their sins and accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior."
The numbers also show only 1% of this parent group in Catholic, mainline Protestant and black Protestant churches have a biblical worldview, compared to just 9% in Evangelical, Charismatic and nondenominational churches. Dr. Barna says this trend has been on the decline for about 25 years now and it's getting down into the very low single digits with each succeeding adult generation. As millennial parents become the majority, Barna worries those numbers could get worse as they're seen as least likely to have and share a Christian lens.
"It's very sobering from a Christian perspective and Christian worldview, but I'm not surprised," said Dr. Danny Huerta, vice president of Parenting and Youth at Focus on the Family. "Really, culture has done a great job of messaging the fact that, 'Hey, let's just live free and limitless.' We've created ultimately a consumer-focused culture."
The study points to several reasons for this result, including no-fault divorce as well as the secularization of news, art and entertainment. It adds that public schools and governmental laws foster a culture where wisdom and biblical truth have little room to grow.
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