I remember a conversation that I had with a parent who believes that kids should not hear a lot of the things in the Bible because they are too violent.
Some parents want to live in a Precious Moments world where everything is candy, rainbows, and unicorns. There are no swords, guns, battles, fights, and no one dies. Everything would not be awesome. In a Precious Moments world, you alienate boys.
Let me explain.
I have read too many articles on men disengaging from church. Men are checking out. Men think that our church services are too feminine and there is no reason for them to go to church. While some of that may be excuses, some of it might just be true.
We still need to engage men but let’s also start to engage boys now so that when they grow up to become men, they will be godly, gospel-centered, Jesus loving, church serving men.
Your boys can handle the violent parts of the Bible. Before you decide to push back, think about what your kids have already seen.
- Batman beats the fool out of the bad guys.
- Spiderman engaging in a fight, using his webbing on all the different bad guys he fights.
- Transformers: Giant robots shooting and knocking parts off of each other. You did know that Optimus Prime carries a sword right?
- The Hulk rips robots in half and most likely rips their head off. He rips planes from the sky and likes to pummel aliens.
- The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles engaging in epic battles against the foot clan. Did you notice they are ninjas?
The list goes on: Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Superman, WWE, G.I. Joe, Star Wars, Football, Boxing, Ninjago….
Boys can handle:
- The fact that David takes Goliath’s sword and uses it to cut his head off.
- God’s judgement on Sodom and Gomorrah.
- Animal sacrifices.
- Beniah engages in battle with an Egyptian, snatches the spear from the Egyptian and kills him with his own spear.
- In Noah’s story, God only saves eight people. Every other person in the world at that time drowned.
- We are in a war against sin, the rulers, authorities, and cosmic powers over this present darkness, and the spiritual forces of evil.
- The crucifixion of Jesus.
Boys especially, need to understand that Jesus is Savior, Redeemer, Shepherd and King. Before Jesus, animals had to die because their blood was an offering for forgiveness of sins. Jesus became the ultimate blood sacrifice for the forgiveness of our sins.
Boys need to know about God’s wrath and judgement on sin. God poured out his wrath in the flood. God, by his grace, saved Noah. God judged Sodom and Gomorrah because of their sin. God, by his grace, save Lot and his family. David and Goliath is an awesome story because it show that we are cowards like the army of Israel. David is a type of Jesus. Jesus takes out your obstacle and cuts its head off so that it does not come back. Jesus fights our battles.
Boys need to hear what John Owen said, “Be killing sin or sin will be killing you.” You have to fight against sin. You can not be passive against sin. Sin is relentless and will not go easy on you. You have to kill sin as violently as it wants to kill you.
Boys can handle that.
It’s all in how you tell the story.
God put in the Bible exactly what he wanted. Everything in the Bible has a purpose. Everything in the Bible is there for our sanctification – our spiritual growth – conforming to the image of Jesus.
Do you know what is not in the Bible?
- A world made out of candy.
- Flying ponies.
But there is a rainbow.