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Gen Z Challenged to ‘Live for What Matters Most’ at Passion 2024: ‘It’s All About Jesus’

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Thousands of teens and young adults gathered in Atlanta, Georgia this week to worship Jesus, delve into God’s Word, and learn how to be light in their generation.

The Passion 2024 conference kicked off on Jan. 3 at Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium with speakers Pastor Louis Giglio, “Duck Dynasty” star and social media influencer Sadie Robertson Huff, Pastor Jonathan Pokluda, Pastor Levi Lusko and musicals guests such as Brandon Lake, Kari Jobe, and Phil Wickham. 

Giglio started the Passion movement in 1995 with the purpose of “calling students and leaders from campuses across the nation and cities around the world to live for what matters most… “the name and renown of Jesus.”

“It’s just all about Jesus,” he recently shared. 

The Passion Conferences are geared toward 18-to-25-year-olds and based on the scripture Isaiah 26:8 which reads, “Yes, Lord, walking in the way of your truth, we wait eagerly for you, for your name and your renown are the desire of our souls.”

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This week’s conference opened up with Robertson Huff who shared an inspiring message on the gift of evangelism. 

“Why are you scared to share the most incredible story known to man that would change anyone’s life that encountered it,” the 26-year-old asked. 

“This is the greatest gift you could give someone to share this news. You’re going to face hard things. I think some people … are like, ‘How do I know God is real? God, prove to me that you’re real by everything working out in my life. God, if you’re real, then I’ll get the job. If you’re real, I’ll meet my spouse. If you’re real, then everything will be OK.’ But it’s not when things are good and perfect that proves that God is real. It’s normally in the hardships that the evidence of His faithfulness becomes so real to you,” Robertson Huff explained.

She added, “This story will not be lost on my watch. Don’t let it be lost on yours. Don’t let it be lost on your family. Don’t let it be lost on this generation. When everyone turns to other gods… [instead of] the one true God, stay steadfast.”

Giglio simply pointed young people to the power of the cross. 

“Nothing you can do will ever be enough to get you to holy, holy, holy. Jesus did enough to bring you from death to life and into a relationship with a Holy God. It is not a system. It is a Savior.”

“It is not you trying harder,” he added. “It’s about you trusting in the finished work of the cross.”

Pastor Jonathan Pokluda of Harris Creek Baptist Church in Waco, Texas, criticized the broader church for “lukewarm” Christianity and warned young people against tolerance that ultimately leads to hell. 

 

He cited a USA Today report claiming that 70% of all major Christian and non-Christian religious groups say many religions can lead to eternal life.

“And we might reject this in belief; maybe you hear that, (you think), ‘No, that’s not true.’ But we accept it in practice because we’re not bothered by someone not believing in Jesus,” he said. “We sleep fine. We ride elevators and walk through hallways with people who are going to Hell, and we’re OK,” Pokluda stated. 

“It doesn’t seem like we believe that Jesus Christ is the only way…If you’re here and you’re a believer, I want to teach you how to address things like, ‘All religions lead to God,’ or ‘I’m glad that’s your truth.’ Or, ‘I’ll live my life and get right with God later before I die; I’ll figure out the Jesus thing,'” he continued. 

Pokluda broke down what Jesus meant when he said in John 14:6 that He is “the way and the truth and the life.”

“[Jesus says] ‘I’m the way to God. There’s no other way to God; I’m the only way to God.’ And you probably have heard, ‘Well wait, I think there are many ways to God,’ or ‘All religions will lead to God,’ or ‘Don’t all religions actually teach the same thing?’ That’s a statement of ignorance. The person who says that all religions teach the same thing has never studied other religions,” he said. 

Pokluda also called attendees to examine their hearts and to allow the truth of the Word to convict them of sin they have tolerated. 

“Jesus says, ‘I am the truth,’ and so many of you are not on a truth journey, you’re on a happiness journey. You don’t care. You’d say, ‘I’ll believe a lie if it will make me happy, and what if the truth doesn’t make me happy? What if the truth means I can’t do whatever I want to do when I want to? I can’t date whoever I want to date … I can’t look at whatever I want to look at. What if the truth compromises my deepest desires?’ It’s still the truth,” Pokluda explained.

“Jesus is the only way to Heaven, and that’s loving because it’s true,” he shared. 

 

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