Judges 2:10 Moreover, that whole generation (to which Joshua belonged) was gathered to their ancestors (that is, they died), and another generation grew up after them, who did not know the Lord or the work that he had done for Israel.
Joshua lived to be 110 years old. Under his leadership, and under the leadership of the elders who served with Joshua, the people were well-led and were faithful to God. But once Joshua died, and all the elders of his generation died, the people went astray. We are told they “did not know the Lord or the work that he had done for Israel”.
Truth is, each generation has responsibility for passing along the faith to the next. It was true in Joshua’s day and it’s true in ours. As father to three children, this is a responsibility I take seriously – as do others of you who are parents. One might think that because I’m a pastor and my kids grew up in the church they would naturally embrace the Christian faith, but this is not necessarily true. In fact, children of pastors often are more skeptical of the faith – and the church – not less. As my children approach adulthood, I hope and pray that the seeds of faith sown in them all these years will bear fruit.
But most of you reading this blog are not pastors. Maybe you haven’t spent many years teaching the faith to your children, modeling for them what a Christian life looks like. Maybe this is a cause of concern for you as you read this. Fear not brothers and sisters. The family I grew up in was effectively unchurched. Nevertheless, the Lord laid hold of me and has never let go. Do the best you can, pray for your children, and trust God to do the rest.
Lord, give us adults grace today to model the Christian life for the children in our midst. And the adults for that matter. We ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.