Why do young adults leave Christianity in college?

Someone asked why do I think so many young adults leave Christianity while in college?

 

  1. It is easier for a camel to go thru the eye of a needle than a rich man to enter the kingdom of God (Matthew 19:24; Mark 10:25; Luke 18:25).
  2. Many are called, but few are chosen (Matthew 22:14).
  3. There are false prophets and false teachers among us (2 Peter 2:1).
  4. At least some who leave do so to show they were never of the church (1 John 2:19).
  5. Some who leave show they are prodigals who will return (Luke 15:11-32).
  6. The disciples had a three year period as adults of living with the Christ and learning from Him before they were sent out into the world to make disciples. Our children (as young adults) only have 2 hours a week (if that) for much of their lives of being taught and few actually are discipled. They dont have sufficient discipleship so they are not prepared for the rigors of facing so much sin and so many attacks on faith from supposedly educated people. They have little or no experience with debate, or even discussion of applying scripture to real life situations. They have little or no training in apologetics.
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Why Christians tell people the Gospel….

There are many who want to know why Christians share the Gospel with others. Its really simple. No one other than God knows who will be saved, so we share with everyone.

We need to hear the Word of God to be saved and to grow in respect to salvation (to be sanctified).

Romans 10:8-11
8 But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”—that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, 9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; 10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.”

Romans 10:17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.

1 Peter 2:2 like newborn babies, long for the pure milk of the word, so that by it you may grow in respect to salvation,

Will we recognize our loved ones in heaven?

Someone asked me if her mother would recognize her in heaven, since she was ten when her mother passed away. My immediate response was to ask whether her mother trusted Jesus as her Savior, and she replied, “Yes…”

So I replied, “There is no question that if your mother trusted Christ as her savior, if she trusted that God the Father sent the Son of God to earth to be born, and live a sinless life and suffer and die to pay for our sins and was raised again on the third day, then she is with God the Father in heaven.”

She responded, “If it’s there she is for sure. Will she know me?

This is my response to her question:

Will your mother know you? People definitely know others in heaven.

In 1 Samuel 28:8-17, Certainly King Saul recognized the prophet Samuel when the witch raised him from the dead.

2 Samuel 12:19-23 tells us that King David expected that when he died, he would go to heaven to be with his recently dead infant child.

Luke 9:28-33 and Matthew 17:3-4 tells us of when Jesus was transfigured with Moses and Elijah and they knew each other, and were recognized by Peter.

In the parable of when the Rich man and the poor man died, Abraham, Lazarus, and the rich man all recognized each other (Luke 16:19-31).

Jesus was recognized, by many people, in His glorified body after His resurrection (John 20:16, 20; 21:12; 1 Corinthians 15:4-7). We too will be recognized in ours.

So yes, we will recognize those we know/love – even if its been years since we saw them.

Also, we will not be in pain in heaven – even emotional pain. We know this because we are told in Revelation 21:3-4 that God will wipe away every tear, there will be no more death, mourning, crying, or pain.

We are told that Jesus will give eternal life (and a place in heaven) to those who desire it. But those who do not believe, who do not have a changed heart, will not be in heaven with God (Revelation 21:5-8).

[In fact, we are told that while eternal life is for those who believe, those who do not believe still have the wrath of God upon them (John 3:16-18). But this belief is more than mere intellectual assent, it must include a changed heart to the point where you obey God (john 3:36; James 2:14-20).]

The Apostle Paul taught that we need to repent, turn to God, and have evidence of repentance (Acts 26:20).

So the question you need to ask yourself is – will YOU be in heaven? Will you repent and turn to God through trust in Christ? Will you call Jesus Lord?

If you have done this, or will do this, then yes, you will see your loved one in heaven and you both will recognize each other.

Feeling bad when speaking about God

I have heard folks that like to talk with me about God, until they start to feel bad, then they dont want to talk to me any more.

Feeling bad because of who God is or what God wants from us and for us, or what God will do, is not a bad thing. It is one tool God uses to move us closer to being who He wants us to be. It is one tool God uses to give us faith. It is one tool God uses to change us. It is one tool God uses save us.

Look folks, I am not perfect. I was and am a sinner. The difference between before I became a Christian and afterwards is that I now have faith in Christ and so I have the righteousness of Christ. Before I was simply a sinner. Now I am a sinner saved by grace through faith. Before I became a Christian, I had the wrath of God upon me. Now, I have the grace of God upon me and am forgiven – not because of anything I have or will do, but because of what Christ has done.

Look at the worst of sinners you can imagine and there but for the grace of God go I.

Before I had faith in Christ, I could not please God. Now I work out my salvation and try to think and act like Christ would have me and when I fail, because I do and will fail, I feel conviction and contrition. And I change, and I confess and I ask forgiveness. God is faithful to His own nature. Should I walk away from God and stay away, that will prove I did not have saving faith to begin with – regardless of what I thought and did. It is God who saved me, who saves me, who will save me, who gave me faith, and who sealed me and who empowers me and who guides me and who protects me and and keeps me – not me. Yet I have my responsibility to live as God would have me live.

There but for the grace of God go I; I am not facing the condemnation of God, nor am I facing the wrath of God. Because of the grace of God, because of His love for His creation, I was chosen and given faith and saved – not because I am who I am, or I did what I have done, or I will do what I will do, and certainly not because God knew I would choose Christ (for then my salvation would depend upon me and my actions), but because God would give me faith to be able to choose Him and ensured I would and did choose to trust in Christ and follow and obey Christ.

So be glad and grateful and rejoice when you feel bad when you think or speak about God – and change and turn to God in repentance and faith and be saved.

Sinners in the Hands of An Angry God

Have you listened to “Sinners in the hands of an angry God” by the preeminent theologian Jonathan Edwards? Wow. What a message.

Once Saved Always Saved?

There are some who believe that we can lose our salvation. But I dont see that in scripture.

Our salvation depends on God, not man. If we do not remain firm in the faith, then we were never saved to begin with. If we continue in the faith firmly established, then God has reconciled us to present us holy and blameless – but if we dont remain steadfast in the faith, then we never truly had it in the first place. Paul said many times we are saved if we remain firm in the faith. Jesus said He never knew those who claimed to be His but didnt live righteously. In fact, Paul said those who leave the community of faith were never part of the family of God.

1 Corinthians 15:1-2

1 Now I make known to you, brethren, the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received, in which also you stand, 2 by which also you are saved, if you hold fast the word which I preached to you, unless you believed in vain.

Colossians 1:21-23

21 And although you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind, engaged in evil deeds, 22 yet He has now reconciled you in His fleshly body through death, in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach— 23 if indeed you continue in the faith firmly established and steadfast, and not moved away from the hope of the gospel that you have heard, which was proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, was made a minister.

Romans 9:11-18

11 for though the twins were not yet born and had not done anything good or bad, so that God’s purpose according to His choice would stand, not because of works but because of Him who calls, 12 it was said to her, “The older will serve the younger.” 13 Just as it is written, “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”

14 What shall we say then? There is no injustice with God, is there? May it never be! 15 For He says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” 16 So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy. 17 For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, “For this very purpose I raised you up, to demonstrate My power in you, and that My name might be proclaimed throughout the whole earth.” 18 So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires.

Matthew 7:15-23

15 “Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they? 17 So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 So then, you will know them by their fruits. 21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. 22 Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’

1 John 2:19

They went out from us, but they were not really of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but they went out, so that it would be shown that they all are not of us.

Nowhere in scripture does it state you can lose your salvation,nor does it say you can walk away or turn your back upon Christ, or give up your salvation.

ALL that the Father gives to the Son will come to Him. ONLY those the Father grants can come to faith in Christ. All that believe will have eternal life and be lifted up by Christ. When we believe, we are sealed with the Holy Spirit until the day of Redemption. It does not depend on us, but upon God.

We might claim to be believers, but if we do not have the righteousness of Christ, then we do not belong to Christ – in fact, He never knew us if we dont live as God said. People who do not remain part of the body of Christ were never OF the body of Christ.

John 6:37-40,44, 65

37 All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out. 38 For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. 39 This is the will of Him who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last day. 40 For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise him up on the last day.”

44 No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day.

65 And He was saying, “For this reason I have said to you, that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted him from the Father.”

Ephesians 1:13-14

13 In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation—having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, 14 who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God’s own possession, to the praise of His glory.

Ephesians 4:30

Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.

You are only saved if you repent, turn to God and trust in Christ until the end. That repentance will be part of what God uses to change us and move us toward him. In fact, it will cause of to have deeds appropriate to repentance.

Acts 26:20
20 but kept declaring both to those of Damascus first, and also at Jerusalem and then throughout all the region of Judea, and even to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, performing deeds appropriate to repentance.
If we are saved, we will walk away from a pattern of sin. If you dont repent, believe, and continue in faith, then Christ never knew you. If you leave the community of faith, then you were never of the family of God.


John was clear we must practice righteousness. Otherwise we do not belong to God.

1 John 3:4-10

4 Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness. 5 You know that He appeared in order to take away sins; and in Him there is no sin. 6 No one who abides in Him sins; no one who sins has seen Him or knows Him. 7 Little children, make sure no one deceives you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous; 8 the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil. 9 No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. 10 By this the children of God and the children of the devil are obvious: anyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor the one who does not love his brother.

This is not to say we wont sin, but we wont live a pattern of sin. If we sin, then we have an advocate in Christ.
1 John 2:1

My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous;

Some believe that we stand firm by our own power, but Paul says GOD causes us to stand firm, that GOD anointed us, seals us, owns us, given us His Spirit as a guarantee of our salvation.
2 Corinthians 1:21-22

21 Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, 22 set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.

But if we have this faith, we are saved and will not loose that salvation – for you have been sealed by God, and will not be snatched from the hands of Jesus, not even by you yourself.

John 10:27-29

27 My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand.

Not only can no one snatch us out of Jesus’ hands, but He will not drive you away. More than that, Christ will lose none of those the Father has given Him, but everyone who believes in the Son will have eternal life and He will raise them up at the last day.

John 6:37-40

37 All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away. 38 For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me. 39 And this is the will of him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all those he has given me, but raise them up at the last day. 40 For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day.

There are people who say that certain verses show that we can lose our salvation: Revelation 3:5, 2 Peter 2:20-22, 1 Timothy 4:1, Hebrews 6:4-8, Hebrews 10;26-29, 2 Timothy 4:3. So I thought I would address those verses.

Revelation 3:5 – speaks of those who overcome – these are the truly saved, not the ones who claim to be saved and are mistaken.

2 Peter 2:20-22 – this speaks of people who have learned the truth but are not of Christ – do not have true faith. They were not saved and never had been saved. These people thought they were saved but were not.

1 Timothy 4:1 – this speaks of no longer believing, which means the person who thought he was saved, but was not.

Hebrews 6:4-8 – This speaks of the one who thought he was saved and did not remain in the faith, which Jesus, Paul and John all said means they were not saved to begin with.

Hebrews 10:26-29 – This speaks of those who have learned the truth but refuse to repent and keep on sinning. They were never saved to begin with.

2 Timothy 4:3 – This is more of the same – people who are part of the community of Christ but not of the family of God. These people are not saved and never were saved to begin with.

A Christian is to live righteously.

It astounds me people who have been taught the truth about God want to keep poo-pooing what scripture says, ignoring it in favor of choosing to follow their own desires.

But remember, we are expected to love our brothers – this means showing them how to live righteously, calling them on NOT doing so, and then forgiving them when/if they repent.

Calling someone on their behavior is not the same thing as judging them. According to JESUS CHRIST, we are expected to live righteous lives. And we are expected to call out our brothers in Christ who are not living like God said to live. And we are expected to forgive them when they repent.

Matthew 7:21-23
21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. 22 Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’

Matthew 18:15-17
15 “If your brother sins, go and show him his fault in private; if he listens to you, you have won your brother. 16 But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that by the mouth of two or three witnesses every fact may be confirmed. 17 If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.

Matthew 18:21-22
21 Then Peter came and said to Him, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” 22 Jesus *said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.

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