A survey of teenagers and their Bible reading suggests that the best gift parents can give their teens is to open the Bible and read it with them.
An annual survey by the American Bible Society found that 70 percent of teens have strong beliefs about the Bible and its teachings – but 64 percent of them fail to read about the beliefs they hold.
"We're definitely seeing the good news of these teens having a high view of scripture," says ABS spokesman Andrew Hood, "but not really translating that into reading it."
The annual report, Teens State of the Bible, contains the findings from a nationwide study commissioned by ABS and conducted by Barna Research. Barna conducted online interviews with 1,056 teens ages 13 to 17.
Getting teens to become more engaged with Bible study is a challenge, says Hood, and what parents and churches need to do is encourage teens to do more than just flip the pages and read.
"Not just read the Bible," Hood says, "but really stick with it, dive deep, and give them the tools that they need to understand it."
It's not like there aren't any choices out there - from a traditional King James study Bible to an apologetics study Bible. There are even Bibles for teenage girls and for African American teens.
Hood says ABS partners with Barna to ensure the study results show a broad range of ages and demographics.