Why are so many millennials leaving the church? It seems fewer people are attending a church in this generation than in previous generations.
Answers in Genesis has put forth these statistics. You may find them interesting. I do. Fifty-six percent of Papa’s generation go to church. Forty-four percent of my mother’s generation go to church. Thirty-two percent of Jeff’s – he’s in a different one from me. He called me a young whippersnapper the other day or something – but 32% Jeff’s age. Twenty-seven percent my age – I’m right there at the beginning of Generation X. It starts at 1965 and I just slipped in. I think it goes all the way to ’80. But millennials – basically those from 1980. Eighteen percent attend church. So what you’re watching is from Papa’s age – 56% – down to 18%. What’s happening? Scripture talks about there may be a great falling away before the end. What’s happening in America? Just listen to this, because the statistics go further. Notice what they found. Of millennials who grew up in the church, % leave the church by the time they hit college age. Why? The common answer: Evolution. (incomplete thought) This is what they recognize: We hear millions of years taught in high school – elementary school, middle school, high school – but not only that, you know what else they’re saying? And we heard it taught by many preachers. And you know why it’s such a battle for their faith? Because they’re being honest. The preacher says: Well, it’s okay to think this took millions of years. But you know what the problem is? These millennials read Genesis 1 and guess what they think they’re hearing it say. That it was all done in seven days. See, that is the problem. It sounds like it is saying something and anybody that wants to take it seriously – You know what? Richard Dawkins says these sophisticated theologians who want to try to find evolution in here, he says they’re deluded. He says these creationists that are holding to what I am going to espouse, he said they’re right. He’s saying these other guys that are trying to find this there, they’re deluded. Now you see he thinks he’s got us then because he thinks that there’s such irrefutable evidence for evolution – he calls it – “evil”-lution. The Brits say it right. But see, he thinks he’s got us. It’s like you can’t argue it. But he says at least the creationists have it right. These guys that are trying to tow the line between both, he says they’re deluded. You can’t do that. And he recognizes that. And you know what? The millennials recognize that too. Listen to what else: He said of millennials who leave church, most heard the preacher teach that it’s okay to believe in billions of years which caused them to doubt the Bible. Of millennials still in the church that haven’t left, when asked what, if anything, causes them to ever doubt the Bible the most? Answer: the age of the earth is by far the biggest issue. Same millennials when asked if they have had their Christianity challenged and said yes, they were asked at what point. Two points were about even: The age of the earth and why bad things happen. I’ll tell you these young people are being honest. And they recognize it. And you know what, this is the very thing Andy Stanley sees, and he’s trying to come up with an answer for. He recognizes people are bailing out because scientific evidence – so-called science is supposedly undermining this account, and what happens is – (incomplete thought). See, too many people recognize the reality of this. You start having the dominoes fall and click, click, click – they go right down the line until you start taking out the New Testament. See, guys like Andy Stanley who come along and say we’ve got to unhitch this so that when those dominoes fall they don’t take out the New Testament too. So we’ve got to unhitch the Old Testament. We’ve got to basically say, okay, it’s myth. We all recognize that. That’s not the way you defend it because people aren’t buying it. You want to encourage people’s faith? What we want to do is we want to defend this book in its entirety. And that’s where the problem is. The reality is this, if millennials were looking at this account and saying, oh yeah, I see billions of years in here. Well, guess what? When they go into their college course and the professor stands up and he says this has all taken billions of years, what are they going to say? They’re going to say, yeah, my faith is consistent with what you’re teaching. We’ve seen that all along right here in Genesis. But they don’t see it. That’s why it is such a challenge to their faith.