A Holy Diversity or Youth Culture

We have long proclaimed the sinfulness of creating different cultures in the church based on age and affinity. Why? Because God’s design (revealed in scripture) for the church makes it a “body and a “family” composed of a diverse mix of ages and personalities and life stages. God brings this diversity together in “one body.” As a result we have criticized the creation of separate cultures in the church whether they be youth cultures or senior citizen cultures… God has built in a holy diversity into His Church. 

Stephen Nichols has written a good article explaining some of the pitfalls of a youth driven culture in his article, Youth Driven Culture.

He speaks to several of the drivers of the problem as follows,


“The subtle and not-so-subtle pulls of the idolization of youth manifest themselves in three areas. The first is an elevation of youth over the aged. This reverses the biblical paradigm. The second is a view of being human that values prettiness (not to be confused with beauty and aesthetics), strength, and human achievement. Think of the captain of the cheerleading squad and the star quarterback. The third is the dominance of the market by the youth demographic. That is to say, in order to be relevant and successful, one must appeal to the youth or to youthful tastes. These manifestations of our youth-driven culture deserve a closer look.”


A fickle church often falls prey to the pressure to play to youth, and thereby loses the diversity God has designed.