The Millennial Church: The Future of Christianity (Pt.5)

Relevant magazine recently posted an article on how most millennials these days are having sex before marriage. Looking at how powerful the energy of sex is, it’s understandable why they aren’t waiting until the average age of marriage for millennials (27-30). While waiting for sex has been— and should be— admired and acknowledged as the ideal that one would hope to keep, the early age of puberty and the later years of marriage, are causing this to feel like an impossible ideal to uphold. At the heart of the loss of virginity before marriage lies a bigger issue in the eyes of millennials, morality/ethics.

Growing up in a relativistic/pluralistic society is a hard way to grow up. Society and elements of the Church are not handing out the black and white absolutes that they had to previous generations. Much of the moral and ethical questions and answers are blurry in the eyes of the person doing these moral and ethical actions. Pluralism/relativism teaches that what might be right for somebody, doesn’t mean it’s right for everybody. This is a hard way to grow up (even though I feel like it’s one of the necessary stages in life. It softens your thoughts and emotions.) Yet, in the midst of all this blurriness, we are a generation of “change” (we are the generation that elected Barack Obama) and we have decided to “occupy” broken areas of society. I am convinced that my generation is trying to figure out who we are in an emerging post-Christian society. And, as the psychologist Carl Jung reminds us, the first step in figuring out who you are is figuring out who you are not.

The types of Christian that we will want to be are not the types of Christians described in the book unChristian,: hypocritical, too focused on getting converts, anti-homosexual, sheltered, too political, judgmental. Part of the millennial mantra is journey, and I figuring out the ethical issues along the way. I believe we will be seeking practical way to live in the word. We might make some concessions or contradictions as to what we believe is right (such as sexuality), in order to serve the greater good. After all, doing things like serving the broken, the needy, the oppressed, will cause us to go to places, that may not “be best for us.” (Example: Hanging out with poor people, might mean eating at McDonalds or shopping at Wal-Mart. Which isn’t loving our bodies or our societies because of their socio and physiological oppression.) No one lives ideally all the time (otherwise, we’d never go to McDonalds, Wal-Mart), so we live in a hard time where we are trying to figure out: How do I serve God the best that I can with the resources that I have? We don’t live in ideal times, so we’re going to have to try and be flexible with our morality, yet still conscious of the effect that our less-than-ideal choices have on the world around us. Ideally, my generation wouldn’t have premarital sex, we would have been raised in a society that valued marriage, and we wouldn’t wait until we’re almost 30 to get married, but we don’t live in ideal times. These are going to be the moral and ethical struggles that my generation is going to have wrestle with.

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5 thoughts on “The Millennial Church: The Future of Christianity (Pt.5)

  1. Pat Pope says:

    I’m 47 and grew up in the black and white era. I still ended up engaging in premarital sex. Although that environment might have worked for some, it does not and did not prevent young people from going into destructive life patterns. In some ways, I think it contributes to rebellion.

    One thing that concerns me though about young people getting married so young is whether they see that as the only option to staying sexually pure. Also, by getting married so young, are they missing out on living and enjoying life as a single, thus contributing to later divorce?

  2. […] The Millennial Church: The Future of Christianity (Pt.5) (mikefriesen05.wordpress.com) […]

  3. Allan Palmer says:

    There’s a far deeper crisis going on than mere sex and that is the basis for all morality in general. In our godless society and like it or not that’s the one we live in, we have no basis for morality. So, we have resorted to what we have on hand and that, is what we think. Whatever we think in these things we call our brains, has become morality and even more than that, it has become our truth. Whatever I think is the truth, I believe is the truth. Nothing new really. (cf. Proverbs 21:2) Expediency, profit, efficiency, comfort, stress release: all types of other things are determining what truth is rather than a sincere and humble submission to God’s Word in all His forms. The other side of that coin is, of course, a sincere and humble love for all of God’s people. A morality built on the life, words, and Spirit of Jesus is not a cold, unfeeling, unyielding code but is marinated in God’s love.

    Another question to the question which I have found in my discussions as a pastor is that many people have no real desire to find an answer if they suspect that the answer is going to be in any way different than what they are already doing. Therefore, many people have put aside Scripture because they are certain they already know what it says and they know quite well that rigid, black and white morality doesn’t fit into their lifestyle. It is difficult for many people to accept something as always right or always wrong when we wish with all our hearts for it to be otherwise.

  4. […] The Millennial Church: The Future of Christianity (Pt.5) At the heart of the loss of virginity before marriage lies a bigger issue in the eyes of […]

  5. I’m not sure we can draw the parallel between not valuing marriage and waiting longer to get married. I believe one of the reasons our generation waits longer for marriage is because we’ve watched the high divorce rates of our parents’ generation and want something different for ourselves. We wait because we do value marriage and want to be sure before we enter into it.

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