Why many ‘nones’ are likely to find or return to faith
Jeff Brumley Baptist News
The Pew Research Center is reporting that 80 percent of Americans believe in God, which should be great news for America’s struggling churches.
But hold on. Of that group, only a slim majority, 56 percent, believe in the God described in the Bible, Pew found in a recently published survey.
However, that doesn’t mean the rest are outright religion-rejecting secularists.
Another 23 percent say they believe in “some other higher power/spiritual force.” And of those 19 percent who say they do not believe in God, 9 percent still believe in a higher power or spiritual force, compared to 10 percent who do not.
The poll results seem to confirm what Pew and other polling agencies have been reporting in recent years: that while religious participation and membership is down, spirituality is holding its own, even among those considered to be the most irreligious.
“In the U.S., belief in a deity is common even among the religiously unaffiliated — a group composed of those who identify themselves, religiously, as atheist, agnostic or ‘nothing in particular,’ and sometimes referred to, collectively, as religious ‘nones,’” Pew said in an analysis of its survey.
“Indeed, nearly three-quarters of religious ‘nones’ … believe in a higher power of some kind, even if not in God as described in the Bible.”
Among those who believe in the God presented in the Bible, most envision a loving, all-powerful and all-knowing deity who controls their lives. Americans who hold to a higher power outside Jewish or Christian scripture do not believe in those all-powerful qualities.
“Overall, about half of Americans (48%) say that God or another higher power directly determines what happens in their lives all or most of the time,” Pew reported. “An additional 18% say God or some other higher power determines what happens to them ‘just some of the time.’”
Almost eight-in-10 in the U.S. say God or a higher protected has offered them protection, while two-thirds say they have been rewarded by that power.
In its study and report, Pew doesn’t say whether its findings are good or bad news for America’s religious groups. But other research suggests that it’s too soon to conclude the death of faith in the nation.
In a 2014 book titled Changing Faith: The Dynamics and Consequences of Americans’ Shifting Religious Identities, sociologist Darren Sherkat said U.S. citizens flip-flop on religion more than any other population on Earth.
More than 40 percent of Americans change religious identifications one or more times in their lives, he reported.
Writing for Christianity Today, Ryan Burge analyzed a study that tracks the ebb and flow of Americans between belief and unbelief, and between different religious traditions.
- Nigerian student recalls the night 10 family members were killed in front of her
- 52 Percent of Americans Say Abortion is a Sin
- Creator of ‘The Message’, Eugene Peterson, dies at 85
- In Northern Ireland majority believe in importance of unborn lives
- Evangelist arrested in Turkey days after Andrew Brunson released from prison
The Dangers of Under-or Over-Reacting to Church Security Risks
It happens in churches across the country every Sunday. This time, though, the outcome was tragic. Robert Braxton III, 27, took a seat in a...
More Evidence that the Transgender Revolution Will Fail
I have nothing personal against those who identify as transgender. To the contrary, my heart goes out to them. What struggles have they lived with,...
Donald Trump Is Not the Christ and Donald Trump Is Not the Antichrist
I recently saw an article about a Hindu man in India who (literally) worships a picture of President Trump. But that doesn’t surprise me, given the...
Former Satanist: Christians shouldn’t celebrate Halloween
Should Christians celebrate Halloween? Opinions differ between Christian leaders, lay people and church members. According to a CBN News Facebook...
It took 1000 coffees, but you've ﬁnished your book...
So where to now?
That's where we come in.
We have a team of publishing professionals ready to help you bring your book from your laptop to the world.
We offer cover design, typeset, eBook conversion, and competitive print prices. Oh and you'll also be on Amazon and thousands of websites worldwide.
Let us help you take the next step.LEARN MORE