“There Arose Another Generation Who Did Not Know the LORD”

Scripture Readings: Judges 2:6-3:6 (text); Ephesians 6:1-4
June 12, 2016 • Download this sermon (PDF)

Dear congregation of Christ: This is a quote from a young professing Christian girl who turned into an atheist:

If God was absolutely moral, because morality was absolute, and if the nature of ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ surpassed space, time, and existence… then why were some things a sin in the Old Testament but not a sin in the New Testament?

One-Generation-AwayThe young Christian girl is Rachael Slick, who three years ago declared to the world that she has become an atheist. Why is this such big news? Because Rachael is the daughter of Matt Slick, a well-known Christian theologian and defender of the faith. From her confession, Rachael says that her father did all the right things in raising her up in a Christian home and a Christian church. She even homeschooled. Her father had her memorize many Bible passages, and also the Westminster Shorter Catechism. But after she went away from home to college, she struggled with her faith, and finally rejected it.

But did she become an atheist because she couldn’t defend her faith anymore? Most recent polls tell us that 70-80 percent of young adults stop going regularly to church, or even reject their faith after they finish high school. In her confession, Rachael said, “For a long time I couldn’t have sex with my boyfriend (of over a year by this point) without crippling guilt. I had anxiety that I was going to Hell.” When she became an atheist, her guilt about her sexual immorality disappeared. So her falling away was not really due to her inability to defend her faith, but to her desire of a world of pleasure completely opposed to Biblical values. And the barrier to this world of pleasure, the Bible and her Christian faith, has to be demolished.

In our text today, we read about the difference between two generations of Israel. The generation of Joshua, who were faithful to the LORD, and the generations after Joshua died, who were unfaithful. What happened to these next generations spanning about 300 years? Was Joshua’s generation guilty of failing to teach the next generation? Can these next generations absolve themselves of guilt because their parents did not teach them? Did Joshua’s generation do their duty to teach their children, like Matt Slick taught her daughter, but the children still rebelled against God? How does this text relate to us today in warnings, instructions and promises?

We will meditate on this second introduction to the Book of Judges. So our theme today is “There Arose Another Generation Who Did Not Know the LORD,” under three headings: first, Joshua’s Faithful Generation; second, The Unfaithful Next Generations; and third, God’s Wrath Against the Unfaithful Generations.

Read the whole sermon here.