"An Unsuitable Substitute"
December 5, 2007
Continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 2 Timothy 3: 14b-15
Julie Willey doesn’t believe in God. A design engineer, Julie was raised Buddhist, but even so, she says she never believed in God. Surprisingly, every week, she and her husband load their four kids into their minivan and take them to Sunday school.
Of course, the Sunday school Julie’s children go to is not exactly like the Sunday school attended by the children of Christian parents. Julie’s children attend atheist Sunday school. That’s right, atheist Sunday school. At atheist Sunday school the instructors use art and discussion to encourage personal expression, mental curiosity, and the ability to work together. Oh, they also use music. Not familiar hymns like, “Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so.” No, their songs are ditties like, “I’m Unique and Unrepeatable.”
But there is no Jesus in atheist Sunday school. Stories like “Stone Soup” replace the traditional Sunday School’s message of “God loved the world so much He sent His Son to save us.”
But there is no Jesus. There are values; there is sociability; there is fun, but there is no Jesus.
There is no birth in Bethlehem; there is no suffering, sacrifice, sin, or forgiveness. There is no glorious resurrection on the third day. There is no hell, heaven, or hope. There is no Jesus. As one parent said, "I'm a person that doesn't believe in myths, I'd rather stick to the evidence."
Well, I don’t believe in myths, either. And every bit of evidence I can find says Jesus was, and is, real. History, fulfilled prophecies, miracles, and Easter Sunday all bear witness to the reality of the completeness of Christ’s redemptive act.
This is why this devotion is designed to encourage Christian parents, teachers, and churches to do all they can to make sure their children are acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make their little ones wise for salvation that comes only through faith in Jesus Christ.
As the Savior said to Martha, “one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:42b)
Let’s give our children the “one thing necessary…” Let’s give them Jesus.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, I give thanks for all who have taught me of the Savior. Now I pray that You will send Your Holy Spirit so the children of this world might also know Him who is the one Person, the only Person who can redeem and save them. In Jesus’ Name, I ask it. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries