Having grown up in church, an alarming percentage of people have now traded in the timeless beliefs of Scripture for a more comfortable, postmodern faith or secular worldview. They have waded so deep into the culture that the current has swept them away with the pluralism of biblical compromise and secular indoctrination. Ready to Return explores:
Why this is happening, and more importantly, what can be done about it to help bring back a godly generation
New persuasive research that clearly reveals shocking details about views on the Church and faith by people in their 20s, known as millennials
Conclusive evidence we cannot ignore, showing a lack of effective biblical apologetics in homes and churches, compromise with secular beliefs, secular education, and failures on the part of previous generations, contributes greatly to this dilemma.
Within these pages is more than just a clinical diagnosis of the Church’s current condition and how we got here. It’s a simple and powerful call to return to the Church’s fundamental mission to reach the world!
If we are to bring back this lost generation, we need a proven strategy and willingness to present truth, a biblical battle plan, and spiritual soldiers.
Ken Ham’s book, Ready to Return: Bringing Back the Church’s Lost Generation is the newest volume in the series preceded by Already Compromised and Already Gone (which I have not read).
Ham et. al. asked 20-somethings questions about Genesis, Biblical authority, etc., and tallied their views and compared them to past generations. What Ham sees is a less literate, less believing generation of people who were brought up in the church.
In questioning what to do, Ham asks why we can just tell everybody, “Jesus loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life”? (57). Why do we have to teach and believe that the Bible is a historical document to be believed?
As a Calvinist, I disagree with the assumption that “Jesus loves everyone and has a wonderful plan for [their] life.” However, I agree with Ham that Christianity is a historical religion, and if it is not historically substantiated, then there is no reason to believe it – in fat, our faith in Jesus and our hope of salvation through Him – if it is not historically true, it is all a vanity.
Ham explains that the current generation holds subjective experience in high esteem, rather than objective truth – in fact, they often deny objective truth (72).
In the latter half of the book, Ham asks what can be done to bring this generation back and to keep other generations from falling away. He concludes that we must in our families and in our churches strongly educate and equip our youth to know what they believe, why they believe it, and how to show that it is true.
Similarly, for those currently outside the church, we have to learn how to show them that the truths of the Scripture matter and hinge together – for example, if there is no historical Adam, there is no salvation in Christ, because Christ says that He is the fulfillment of the historical Adam, which, if there is not historical Adam, makes Christ – at least inaccurate – and definitely ineligible to be a holy Savior.
Too often, we have thrown up our hands and said, “you just have to believe on faith” – as though there was neither apologetic or historical proof for the claims of Christianity. But there are, and our chief need is to learn them and learn how to present them to help our children grow up to be strong believers and – by God’s Grace – to bring back the church’s lost generation.
[I received this book free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This review appears on my blog, Amazon.com, and Masterbooks.com.] (Posted on 1/31/2016)
As a young adult who is a pastor, my heart is grieved over the state of the church with young people. There is no question young adults, even those who have grown up in the church, do not want to have anything to do with the church. Consequently, they leave. So what is the church to do? This is the question Ken Ham seeks to answer in his book Ready to Return: Bringing Back the Church’s Lost Generation. Ham informs the church of the battle she is facing and briefly lays out a game plan to reach this young generation for Christ.
Ken Ham first sets out to alarm the reader to the problem we are facing. His methodology for waking the church up is by giving statistics of this young adult population. The statistics certainly are helpful in observing how young adults who have grown up in church perceive the faith. He correctly informs the church the problem we are addressing with young adults now did not begin with their high school days but they stem from middle school and even elementary. Ken Ham rightfully pinpoints the ultimate issue at hand: “Who says?”—the issue of authority. He writes, “Christians who are fighting for a return to biblical morality cannot hope to win this ‘war of the worldviews’ unless they understand that the real foundational nature of the battle is biblical authority…” (Ham 58).
While I appreciate Ham’s work on the previous two points, I disagree on how he goes about resolving them. In chapter 9, he seems to make the argument that parents, as much as they are able, should take their children out of public school. I understand the reasoning he gives but I am uncertain of whether it is truly the best application. On the issue of biblical authority, Ham seems to call those who do not hold to a “young earth” view as compromising. He attempts to clear up the disagreement is not one of heresy but he still prods the issue throughout the book. It would have been helpful to have a note of clarification on the distinction between macroevolution and microevolution (for such a clarification, see this article from The Village Church-http://thevillagechurch.net/sermon/evolution).
After 8 chapters of laying out the reality, Ken Ham gives the reader a game plan to minister and reach out to this young generation. I am grateful he begins with the home, the spiritual leadership of the father, and looks to the church as the second area of influence. I wish these two points in chapter 9 were developed more fully. To reach this generation, it is crucial to implement a relational and intergenerational dynamic. Although he does address this in chapter 9, it would have been beneficial to take more time on it. Chapter 7, called “Jesus and the Ark”, could have been condensed because, in regards to the subject of the book, a whole chapter devoted to the topic seemed a little long. Still, Ken Ham does point to the fact if young adults are going to make a return it will be through relationships in the home and in the church.
Ready to Return by Ken Ham is a great resource to wake the church up to the problem it is facing with this young generation leaving the church. While I do not necessarily agree with all of his points and his solutions, his heart for this generation is clear. The church must realize the issue we are facing and be willing to do something about it. Ken Ham is ready and he challenges the reader to be ready too.
I received this book for free from Master Books via Cross Focused Reviews for this review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own and are my honest review of the book. (Posted on 1/18/2016)