David Kinnaman is president of Barna Group. He has directed interviews with over 1 million people and overseen hundreds of research studies in the U.S. and around world. He and his team provide insights into how people are thinking about Jesus and the church, how culture is shifting, and how we can respond. David has written several books, including his latest one, Faith for Exiles: 5 Ways for a New Generation to Follow Jesus in Digital Babylon. He and his wife live in California with their three children.
Key Questions for David Kinnaman
-You say that today’s society is “faith repellant.” What do you mean by that?
-What do you mean when you say our culture is a “digital Babylon”?
-How are Millennials and Gen Z being formed spiritually?
-How can local church leaders help young people develop cultural discernment?
Key Quotes from David Kinnaman
“We’re becoming more post-Christian by a lot of measures.”
“Even a lot of people within the church are more self-centered and more oriented around the customs and norms of the world, of the larger society.”
“God actually reveals in scripture this way forward to all of us as believers in a complicated culture. We see it in the actual Babylon of old, but we also see it in places like 1 Peter, where Peter writes to the modern exiles of the New Testament church.”
“We’re convinced that the church plays an essential role, but it has to be rethought.”
“I’ve focused a lot of my attention in the last few years on what is disconnecting young people, and I really try to focus now on what are the reconnections…for example, one of them is experiencing intimacy with Jesus. And that may sound pretty straightforward, but it’s actually pretty easy, we see in the data, for young people to say they’re Christian, but for them to really not have much depth of faith.”
“In some ways, we’ve created a brand experience that’s just, you know, Jesus, but with all the popular trappings of today’s packaged goods.”
“This is really important: there is nothing new under the sun. Human beings are the same in every generation. The kind of issues and challenges of humanity aren’t changing, but the context is changing.”
“It is much more complicated than ever to live as a Christian. It’s never been easy, but it’s really complicated.”