Posted by: Jim Black | March 17, 2009

National Tragedy

In my Bible reading this morning, I came upon this heartbreaking phrase, “After that whole generation had been gathered to their fathers, another generation grew up, who knew neither the LORD nor what he had done for Israel.” (Judges 2:10 NIV) How could this happen, I wondered? This came right after Joshua’s death after the children of Israel had finally taken the land that they had dreamed about for years. They had been blessed beyond measure. God had done so much for them, how could they forget? Slaves in Egypt… crying out to God. He heard their cry and brought them out into freedom. He took care of them, sustained them and dwelt with them in the wilderness for an entire generation, teaching them the way to live and thrive! He empowered Joshua to lead powerful military campaigns into the land, defeating the dirty, rotten Canaanites and establishing Israel in this promised land, fulfilling a centuries-old promise first made to Abraham. After all of this, how could they so easily forget? How could they so easily turn away? How could an entire generation grow up and NOT know what God had done for them?

I heard it said one time that Christianity is always just one generation away from extinction. That may seem a bit alarmist, but isn’t it true? It is the responsibility of every generation to make sure that the faith and the truths of God’s Word are passed on to the next generation. That was why God was so adamant in Deuteronomy 6 when he said, “These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up…” The goal was to insure that the precepts and principles established in His Word were passed along to the next generation… and the generation after that… and the generation after that and so on.

I don’t want to boast or get a big head or anything, but I really do think that this is something this church has done very well for a long time… instructing our children in God’s Word. We’ve got an incredible group of Bible school teachers and volunteers working with our children’s ministry. All of them love our kids and want for them to know God in a deep and meaningful way. It’s not that there aren’t things we might be able to do better. There always are and we are always looking for new ways to improve… but every Sunday morning and every Wednesday night our children’s classrooms are filled to the brim with eager, enthusiastic young people who are being taught (by word & example) what it means to follow Jesus. This could not be done without our wonderful teachers and adult volunteers. If you think you might be able to assist them and help out in this great ministry (if even ‘behind the scenes’) know that YOU are needed! Consider how you might help. Together with God we are insuring that our young people will grow up knowing the God who created the seas… who rescued Israel… who sent his only Son… and who doesn’t want to spend one day in eternity without each one of us!

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