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The Center for Disease Control recently reported that suicide rates have increased by nearly 30% since the turn of the 21st century. Doubtless numerous factors contribute to this rise, but Stephen Meyer, the author of Darwin’s Doubt, identified one during an interview: the hopelessness of naturalism creates “existential anxiety.” If the universe truly sprang forth from impersonal forces and life from random mutations, life is devoid of meaning. This is the world our children occupy. Educators and policy makers fret over kids’ poor “self-esteem,” yet they peddle philosophies which rob them of all hope.
The Bible remedies hopelessness. It offers a window for gazing at the Creator of the universe who gives life meaning. Moreover, it offers a mirror through which young people gain an accurate self-image. As a father of ten kids, I occupy a front-row seat to many attacks of Satan. Without exception, our children’s defenses against those attacks failed when they trusted their own wits or worldly wisdom and succeeded when they embraced the timeless truths of Scripture.
Theology for Young Christians provides a framework for gaining a solid foundation in Scriptural truths. The book guides readers through Bible passages using tried-and-tested techniques for interpretation and application. Students are asked questions, shepherded through the process of finding answers and challenged to consider how Scriptural principles should impact behavior and thinking. At the end of this process, young people are better equipped to systematically study the Scriptures. Indeed, they will, we pray, be less dependent upon study guides and prepared to study other passages. Then, godly self-confidence replaces any manmade self-image, steels the young person for life’s battles and instills hope for victory.