My own drift from traditional Christianity to agnostic began shortly after I transferred from a Bible-affirming Christian school to a public high school. When I questioned evolution and the age of the Earth in my physical science class, the teacher scolded me and told me I only believed in Creationism because that’s what my parents had told me to believe. I learned to stop questioning to avoid being singled out for mockery. Inevitably, my rosy one-sided indoctrination into evolution as scientific fact was eventually successful, especially since no one provided me with scientific answers for Creationism – but this was partly because I didn’t ask! You see, that teacher had convinced me that my beliefs were inherited and I was determined to “think for myself,” so I abandoned the resource God gave me in my parents’ wisdom. Do you see how subtle the Enemy is? Eventually, I dropped out of church altogether. I retained a fuzzy half-held notion of God, but the cult of naturalism had destroyed my faith in Christianity itself. It had destroyed my religion.
Fortunately, God wasn’t ready to give up on me just yet. Fast forward a couple decades, and you’re looking at a Gospel preacher and Creation speaker, the founder of DefGen.org, CreationLetter.com and CreationSundays.com. But when I look back on a decade wasted to unbelief, I wish I had something like the Answers Book 4 Teens back then. Something to answer the questions I had. Something to answer the challenges my science teacher threw at me. Something to give me reason to stand firm. Something to give to my friends to help them stay the course. You see, I wasn’t the only one shaken loose from the faith by the wedge of evolution and millions of years. Few of us eventually returned to the fold. Most graduated from church when they graduated high school, never to return.
The Answers Book 4 Teens [AB4T], the newest addition to Answers in Genesis’ popular Answer Book series, does an admirable job of answering 15 relevant questions that teens of this decade [or any other] are asking about the Bible, God, the origins debate and morality:
- How can anyone believe that the Bible is true since it was written so long ago when people didn’t know stuff?
- If God’s really so great, why does He let so much pain and bad stuff happen in the world, like earthquakes, floods, and wars?
- I believe God created the earth, but does it really matter how old the earth is?
- Who has the most evidence – creationists or evolutionists?
- With everything I hear about God not existing… how can we even know that He does exist?
- Come on, why would God punish the whole world for one guy’s mistake?
- If God really loved the world, why would He make a flood to kill everyone off?
- How could God populate the world with just two people a few thousand years ago?
- Should people from different races marry each other, or is that wrong?
- Why should I listen to what the Bible says about sex?
- If Christians are supposed to love everybody, why do they always seem to hate gay people?
- How are we supposed to talk about God and the Bible in school when it’s illegal?
- How can we be sure Jesus is the only way to get to God?
- The Bible… and dinosaurs… and dragons?
- Why would God ever want to save someone as messed up as me?
The AB4T doesn’t dumb the material down like so many other well-meaning resources. The Introduction provides a definition of terms and the rest of the book is given in an understandable, conversational manner than doesn’t condescend or insult a teen’s intelligence. We have a Biblical obligation to teach our children about God and His Word. We should thank our Creator for such resources as this in our day and age! I urge churches to buy this book in bulk for their teens. I urge fathers and mothers to buy this book both as a personal reference for how to answer their children’s burning questions and to give to their children so they can read these answers for themselves. Armed with such truth, perhaps this next generation can avoid the unbelief that prevailed in mine.
This book is available at Amazon.com at http://www.amazon.com/Answer-Book-Teens-Bodie-Hodge/dp/0890516227/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1321331442&sr=8-1
-Rev Tony Breeden, from the Bookwyrm’s Lair
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the New Leaf Publishing Group Book review program on CreationConversations.com <http://www.creationconversations.com/group/bookreviewersfornewleafpublishinggroup>. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”