In the Beginning there was Sunday School

In the beginning there was Sunday School.

Children’s Church was added thereunto.
In the fullness of time, Youth Group came to be.
Yeah, all “good” churches shall hold Vacation Bible School.
Children’s Bible Study, Evangelism, etc.
With these we shall win the world!

Except We Haven't

American churches have been investing increasingly large amounts of money, time, effort and talent into “children’s programs” for over a hundred years now.

Let’s see how that's working;
  • Is America more or less “churched” now than before we began these programs?
  • Do we have more or fewer people (percentage wise) going to heaven?
Anyone with even a little knowledge of history will tell you we are much less churched today.
In fact, studies tell us we are losing 65-85% of our children by the time they are 19 years old.

Now, I think there are several reasons why that is true.

But obviously, children’s programs aren’t stopping our hemorrhaging of young people.

The theory of children's programs sounds good.

Very righteous. 
“We teach the children about God now so that when they grow up they will remember Him and come back.”
Except They Don't
“We work to get the children saved so they can go back home and save their parents.”

Except They Don't

In fact, this is a “backdoor” approach to getting God into a household. It is, in fact, underhanded. We are trying to sneak God in behind the parent’s back and “catch” them.

And we expect God to honor this?

The Bible says that the man is the head of the household. He is the boss and is responsible for how and what his children are taught.

Everyone has a “world view.” Everyone has a religion. Those who claim they don’t are actually self-worshipers. Self is their god.

To teach a child different, is to undermine the parent’s authority in the home.

And we expect them to thank us?

No, as much as I love children (I have nine of my own), and as much as it grieves my heart to see children not getting what they need, I firmly believe it is wrong for us to go about evangelism the way we typically do.

We need to focus our resources at the God-appointed Head of the House- the Man. Once he is saved we can teach him how to teach his children to follow God. But God will not honor our deceitfulness when we go under the proper authority’s nose.

3% of the time when a child gets saved, the rest of his family gets saved.
40% of the time when the wife gets saved, the rest of her family gets saved.
90% of the time when the husband gets saved, the rest of his family gets saved.

Obviously, aiming at the God appointed "Head" is the best way to go.

“So we should just let children go without trying to teach them about God?”

If the child is visiting your home, starts a conversation in the park, or is in some other way put in your path, by all means, share the Good News.

But as for church programs, trust God to provide for that child to learn about Him when he is grown and aim your energy at the proper authority, the child's dad.

That God will honor and bless.