Amid a falling away from faith phenomenon, Dr. Michael Brown offers insights on how Christians can compassionately respond while trying to make sense of such disheartening news.

As the son of a high-profile Christian leader, Abraham Piper has easily made headlines after he became an online sensation for his TikTok videos critiquing evangelical Christianity.

"What are we to make of all this?" asked Dr. Brown in his Thursday post for The Stream.

The theologian first puts forward that all spectators, including him, can only at best speculate Abraham's spiritual status and previous personal experiences with the Lord. But in whichever case, Brown asked that his fellow believers pray for John Piper's son instead of belittling or demonizing him.

Addressing one of the young Piper's video about hell, Brown admitted that on a certain level, the worldwide Christian movement has "presented some caricatured views about hell to others."

Brown also affirms that "Abraham is right to challenge evangelical hypocrisy" and to challenge how deeply Christians and their leaders believe what they preach. He linked the honest disconnect of so many Christians to the tenets they claim to believe with a quote from renowned revivalist Leonard Ravenhill who said: "Are the things you are living for worth Christ dying for?"

Again the Bible scholar gets realistic about the prevalent "shallowness and even hypocrisy of many other American evangelicals" which he called as the "achilles heel" of Christendom both in the U.S. and out.

"We Can't Ignore the Ongoing Apostasy"

After making a point about the need for Christians to start dismantling hypocrisy through repentance and reform, Brown looked at another angle on why many have, over the years, gradually lose faith. The contributory elements he listed ranged from the "superficial, me-first Christianity preached in America for the last generation" to the increasing number LGBTQ individuals who are coming out, "many of whom are friends and family members of Christians."

These, according to Brown, cause believers to start questioning the Bible's teaching on homosexuality.

"But the bottom line is that we cannot ignore this ongoing apostasy, nor can we simply write off those who are on the attack," he entreated.

Time to Seek a Personal Encounter with God

Still endorsing humility to govern a Christian's attitude when faced with apostasy, Brown encouraged the cultivation of safe spaces where people can freely ask hard questions and to even express their doubts. He added that responses must be always rooted in truth but spoken in love and patience.

Brown also has rousing words for those who think that their faith is strong.

"Yet just because we feel secure does not mean that others do," said Brown. "And just because our faith is strong does not mean that the faith of our children is strong."

When Christians lose steam in walking out their faith, the antidote is not a Bible-thumping theological argument, but "a fresh, personal encounter with God." A legitimate personal encounter with the living God is foundational in preventing apostasy from setting in, says Brown.

Speaking of his latest book "Has God Failed You?: Finding Faith When You're Not Even Sure God Is Real,"
Brown said: "I pray that God will use it to restore, strengthen, heal and make whole."

As for Abraham Piper, Brown entreats the Holy Spirit to powerfully visit and bring him to repentance and faith.

"He will not be the first prodigal to come home," he concluded.