Brad Cooper, student pastor of NewSpring Church in Anderson, SC, speaking to youth in grades 6-12 presented eternal realities as places hinging on partying. Hell will be a place absent of parties while heaven will be where the party is. Apparently, the eternal destination of young people depends not on whether they have repented of sins committed against a holy God and a desire to be with Him for eternity but whether you want to party or not. No alcohol in hell but it will be flowing in heaven. So heaven won’t be about Christ, it will be about us. If you want to party for eternity, choose heaven.
I have two responses to this foolishness. The first is sadness that this happens and that youth I know and care for are under this kind of influence. The second is that I thank God for Aaron Butner, the youth director at Lakeview. Aaron does not present the gospel in a way that appeals to the party spirit of the youth. But he presents Christ, in all of his glory and splendor. He presents the gospel in realms of repentance of sins and faith in Jesus Christ and His righteousness as the only hope anyone has for salvation. There is a further emphasis on pleasing God with your life and denying self to spread the fame of His name. In other words, from start to finish, it is about Christ and not about us. I am thankful that my children are under his influence and grateful that the Lakeview youth, that I love dearly, are under his teaching. At Lakeview, youth will get the true gospel that magnifies Christ and not self. And I am thankful to God for that. We are fortunate that God has placed him at Lakeview.