How to Pass the Gospel to the Next Generation?

A picture of several children praying on the Bible
A picture of several children praying on the Bible (photo:
By Li DaonanJuly 4th, 2024

Social media has become a dominant force today, and children use their smart devices to learn about the world. This phenomenon has led to a trend in Western countries where people are returning to using basic phones.

In this context, figuring out how to pass on the gospel to the next generation indeed poses a challenge. Twenty years ago, Sunday School was booming, with the hope of implanting the gospel in children's minds through exam-oriented education. However, the outcome fell short of expectations, as the percentage of these children becoming Christians when they entered society was far less than anticipated.

The best way to spread the gospel is not through exam questions or forcing children to memorize key points. Jesus’ way of spreading the gospel was not like a teacher highlighting important points in a classroom. Instead, He took his disciples into the people; he moved from place to place, responding to people’s needs. When someone was sick, he healed them; when someone was confused, he provided answers; and when someone was hungry, he allowed them to pick grains on the Sabbath, breaking the law.

Here are four suggestions on how to pass the faith to children.

Tell the story of Jesus well

Before telling the story of Jesus, we should not be obsessed with making children believe that Jesus is the Savior. We just need to share his life story, his love for neighbors, his adherence to covenants, and his sense of responsibility. Speaking about Jesus’ inner pain, joy, anxiety, and weaknesses, we should also be prepared to answer the children's questions.

Explore the outdoors with children

We cannot pass on the responsibility of spreading the gospel to children through mobile apps. Don’t let them hold smart devices to experience God’s greatness through a screen. God created mountains and seas, not screens. By observing the grandeur of nature, we can experience God’s greatness and our smallness—His creation and our place within it.

Adhere to the principles of covenant

In interactions with children, we often say, “We can do it, but you can’t because you’re still a child!” This makes them feel unequal. When making rules, we should include ourselves as well. If we tell children not to smoke, then we must not smoke either; if we tell them not to hold onto their phones all the time, then we shouldn’t do it either. Let children experience the power and equality of the covenant so that when they read about God’s covenant, they will understand His constraints and His deep love for people.

Experience God’s love

God, with unfailing love, does not just meet our material needs. When the devil tempted Jesus, he could have satisfied the flesh, but that is not love but bondage. God’s love for us is shown through giving His only Son to bear our sins. We can show love through our interactions with children to make them feel this kind of love, or we can help neighbors in need, which lets them experience love firsthand.

- Translated by Abigail Wu

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