Born connected

born-connection

Reaching the iGeneration with Genesis

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Young people today are part of a growing digital generation. They live in a world surrounded by smartphones, tablets, and computers. The iGeneration is here and they are born connected!

Plugged in

A recent report indicates the iGeneration in the UK spends on average over 27 hours a week on the Internet—and over 50% of the average waking day (more than typical sleep time) on media or communication activity.1

In some ways, members of the current iGeneration are guinea pigs in one of the largest social experiments ever. The full effects are not yet known, but we are already seeing the rise of clinical diagnoses like ‘technology addiction’.

Almost every week, it seems, we read of the next big thing in the ‘tech revolution’, and wonder where it will end. But despite changing technology, human nature remains the same, and each generation needs to hear the Gospel. How can we identify the issues that impact the iGeneration in the online world they now inhabit?

As truly global citizens plugged into the world via technology, they are exposed to a constant barrage of opinions (and thus numerous evils) from around the globe.

iphone

To add to their confusion, marriage and gender, some of the most fundamental aspects of humanity, are included in this big social experiment. Is it any wonder that issues of identity, fear, loneliness, confusion, and frustration are so common amongst the iGeneration? This is the time for Christians to challenge their thinking and show them a “more excellent way”.2

Genesis has the answers

Members of the iGeneration are searching for answers to the deeper questions of life. They are being let down by the answers they get from a cold, mechanistic naturalism which fails to satisfy their deep longings in their search for truth. They are told that their lives have no ultimate meaning or purpose, because they are simply the end result of unguided physical processes (evolution). So it is not surprising that they use social media as their main way to create an identity and a sense of individuality. With the ‘selfie’ proclaimed as the ‘new autograph’ this is only going to increase.

Purpose

The church scrambles to seek new ways to be relevant to this young generation, but the irony is that we have had the answers all along—the book of Genesis has never been more relevant. The very first verse proclaims: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”3 This stands as a refutation to all naturalistic theories about existence.

Genesis, the seedbed and foundation of the Gospel, loudly proclaims that there is a purpose behind this universe. The message that a loving Creator God is the cause of all life is the antidote to a cold meaningless universe which offers no objective value to their lives. It answers life’s big WHY question: Why do we exist?

Image

Genesis declares that all humans are made “in the image of God”.4 So each individual human life is inherently valuable, invested with a dignity and worth that comes from the highest source imaginable; God Himself! This message stands in stark contrast to today’s evolutionary explanations for humanity. Evolutionary biologist Jerry Coyne blogs: “There is no special purpose for your life … no more extrinsic purpose than a squirrel or an armadillo.”5 The teaching that humans are created in God’s image answers the big WHAT question: What does it mean to be human?

Identity

As the West has jettisoned its biblical heritage, a huge cultural shift has occurred as this new naturalistic way of thinking has crept into its place. This has even impacted the way many view their own body. It is no longer seen as an essential or fixed part of our being, but rather a blank slate which can be labelled with whatever identity one chooses. Gender identity is ‘fluid’, considered as nothing more than a social construct.

If a person feels they are a man trapped inside a woman’s body (or vice versa), then hormones and/or surgery can be used to try and realign this confusion. As an example of this insanity, Facebook now offers account holders the choice of over 50 different gender options! We are witnessing the breakdown of one of the most fundamental structures of God’s created order; the sexes. Genesis 1:27 says God created them “male and female”. Our gender is a scientific reality as well as a sacred gift from God—there are only rare tragic aberrations,6 which are also explained through what happened in Genesis Chapter 3 (see below on the Fall). There is a complementary design inherent in the sexes which is to be celebrated and proclaimed as the remedy to the confusion that reigns over this subject. This helps answer the crucial WHO question: Who am I?

Suffering

The mass media floods the iGeneration with reports of atrocities and injustices. Fearful about their future in this unsettling world, many cry out for justice and wonder why things are like this. Once again naturalism falls short. Unable to even account for moral categories and impulses, it offers no resolution for this sense of injustice.

Genesis has the answer here too, with its history of the Fall of man (Chapter 3). Adam and Eve disobeyed God’s command. Their rebellion against Him brought sin and Satan’s deceptive rule into this world, causing their fellowship with God to be broken and the created order to be cursed. This explains suffering—the world was never intended to be like this. It answers that huge IF question: If God exists, why is there so much suffering?

Solution

Concerned by world events, the iGeneration wants to help! Social justice, government intervention, and economic redistribution are the offered solutions. But ultimately these do nothing about the root of the problem: man’s fallen nature.

Genesis tells of the origin of sin and death at Satan’s instigation, and God’s solution with the promise of a coming Saviour, the ‘Seed of the woman’7 who will ultimately destroy Satan. Only in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ do we see the ultimate solution to the world’s problems. In His life, He showed us how to live, and He died to pay the penalty for our sins. In His Resurrection He defeated death once and for all, proving that He is the only one with the authority to promise that one day He will “wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore.”8 For all generations this is the greatest message of all!

iGeneration

Reaching the iGeneration with Creation

In a world where most people get their news via the Internet, and sometimes in just a 140 character ‘tweet’, it’s hard to communicate Creation and provide full answers. But Creationmagazine has been successful at doing this for over 35 years because it’s stayed current with the trends without compromising the information content.

Creation magazine is available digitally on any Apple, Android or Internet-enabled devices. None of the brilliant full-colour layout is lost and there are a host of other benefits such as searchability within the magazine.

When you subscribe to the print version, you can also get the digital version of the magazine—and the best news is that you can freely share it on up to 5 separate devices. What a great way to reach the younger generations!

References and notes

  1. Anderson, E., Teenagers spend 27 hours a week online, telegraph.co.uk, 11 May 2015. Return to text.
  2. 1 Corinthians 12:31. Return to text.
  3. Genesis 1:1. Return to text.
  4. Genesis 1: 26–27. Return to text.
  5. Weikart, R., Atheists say Darwinism means life is meaningless, but their behaviour shows they know better, stream.org, 4 April 2016. Return to text.
  6. Search gender dysphoria on creation.com for several relevant articles. Return to text.
  7. Genesis 3:15. Return to text.
  8. Revelation 21:4. Return to text.

Helpful Resources

Readers’ comments

Graham P.
Great piece. I was raised in a radical socialist household that never mentioned God, except to swear. When I was a teen I looked at the suffering in the world and realised that if all the suffering had meaning (which it does) then there must be a God who is omniscient. Without a loving Creator, there is no meaning to our lives: but we know our lives do have meaning.

The narcissism of the baby-boomers and Gen-Y's isn't adequate for the i-Gen, because it doesn't address the tragedy of suffering. A friend said to me during my years of questioning 'Don't worry about it, just smoke another joint'. The i-Gen wants to worry about it.
Injustice requires the existence of a loving God: without Him, what's the point? How can we apply a moral standard to others if we don't accept that universal moral standards exist? If a universal moral standard does exist, there must be an enforcer, who can only be God.
Gentiana X.
I agree with the author that this generation has something in common with all generations. It needs help to find the only way to the truth and true life that is in Jesus Christ. However, this generation is in the disadvantage that cultural, scientific environment is much more hostile to the idea of God and creation. It is true that regardless of science advancements and its technological applications, the basic questions for all humans are the same: who are we? Why are we here? Why is there so much suffering in this world if there is a god God? Why do I suffer and it seems there is no answer from the God?
It is clear in the article, that the author is really concerned and he is really close to the iGeneration, and he wants to direct them to the real light and the right path. He provides the correct answers: there are no solutions outside the recognition that there is a God creator, omnipotent and loving God. Human suffering is the wage of its rebellion against God. But God so loved the world that he gave his only son that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.
To me this article is a reminder to the church on the basics of faith, and the themes author mentions are the foundations of our faith.
Bill P.
Use what we have today to share The Gospel of Jesus Christ, because the time is coming soon when this will not even be allowed, in fact it is happening already.
I'm an old man who by The Grace of God has put my trust in Christ Jesus many decades ago. The young people today have been taught life has no meaning, in schools, Hollywood, news, sadly in some homes, etc etc... In many cases this has motivated them to live life w/an attitude of "doing your thing, party while you can, for life is short and after this there is nothing else". Stalin, Mao, and Hitler dreamed of be able to have the devices the world uses today to spread their ideas and keep tabs on everyone.
Now we come to today and those who have no love for the Truth of God are using today's devices to the fullest and what is worse they know what they are doing.
There are a handful of good teachers of The Gospel who are taking advantage of this and they are being harassed for doing so but they keep on sharing The Truth because they know the day is at hand when for a short time the world will stop them by law. I hope you guys do the same as them sharing the evidence of creation and how much more sense it makes when looking at creation from The Word of God. Time is short it's getting darker. Yet "it's always darkest before The Dawn".

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