Poll: Americans love the Bible but don’t read it much

poll bible(Via RNS) More than half of Americans think the Bible has too little influence on a culture they see in moral decline, yet only one in five Americans read the Bible on a regular basis, according to a new survey.

More than three-quarters of Americans (77 percent) think the nation’s morality is headed downhill, according to a new survey from American Bible Society.

The survey showed the Bible is still firmly rooted in American soil: 88 percent of respondents said they own a Bible, 80 percent think the Bible is sacred, 61 percent wish they read the Bible more, and the average household has 4.4 Bibles.

If the Bible is so commonplace in America, wouldn’t its moral teachings counteract the downward trend? Almost a third of respondents said moral decline was a result of people not reading the Bible, while 29 percent cited the “negative influence of America” and one in four cited corporate corruption.

Doug Birdsall, president of American Bible Society, said he sees a reason for why the Bible isn’t connecting with people.

“I see the problem as analogous to obesity in America. We have an awful lot of people who realize they’re overweight, but they don’t follow a diet,” Birdsall said. “People realize the Bible has values that would help us in our spiritual health, but they just don’t read it.”

If they do read it, the majority (57 percent) only read their Bibles four times a year or less. Only 26 percent of Americans said they read their Bible on a regular basis (four or more times a week).

The Rev. James Martin, a Jesuit priest and author of “The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything,” said the Bible can come across as intimidating to the uninitiated. “There’s a tendency to think that if you read the Bible, you have to read it from start to finish. But when people do read the Bible, they don’t know where to begin,” Martin said.

Younger people also seem to be moving away from the Bible. A majority (57 percent) of those ages 18-28 read their Bibles less than three times a year, if at all.

The Barna Group conducted “The State of the Bible 2013” study for American Bible Society, using 1,005 telephone interviews and 1,078 online surveys with a margin of error for the combined data of plus or minus 2 percentage points.

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One Response to Poll: Americans love the Bible but don’t read it much

  1. Mr Davis says:

    There are alot of earthly things spoken of in the Bible and all of these condemn us for everything it talks against that we do and everything it says we should do that we do not do. We are afraid God will change us and we will lose ourselves because we will not have the same desires, we will cease to be the same people. So we look to the hypocrites for guidance, since that life is the one we are most confortable with. We stay away from His complete written revelation to us which has things hard to understand because it is a closed book to us. Even to those who claim mastery in it it can be a closed book, for they rely on man's wisdom to sort it all out instead of seeking the Wisdom that is from above and to live according to what we are clear we should be doing.

    If things are learned going from what is most basic to what is more advanced and the testing comes for evaluation so that we may know if we understand or not. So that we ourselves may know whether we are ready to move on or not. This is for our own sake. Yet we seem to fail to grasp this, the nessesity of the doing, though we apply this principle to every other area of our life. Who build's a house without first setting the foundation. It is the fool that does this thing.

    And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say ? Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them, I will shew you to whom he is like: He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock. But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great. Luke 6:46-49

    We seek after deeper meaning and plung deeper into the abis of man's wisdom following ravenously after our own sinful desires, all the while failing to practice what the word says to do. Because we desire mastery by our knowledge over our fellow man, the very one Christ Himself died to redeem. How can we think to take anything out of the Lord's hand. Yet this is the foolishness, the delusion the LORD almighty allows us to walk in. We say and think we have the truth and cause men to look to us, because we are confident in our instruction which we have received from men.

    And art confident that thou thyself art a guide of the blind, a light of them which are in darkness, An instructor of the foolish, a teacher of babes, which hast the form of knowledge and of the truth in the law. Romans 2:19-20

    Yet it will not bode well for those who fail to lift up there fellow man to Christ alone but rather insist on drawing men after themselves. Acts 20:29-31

    For there is no respect of persons with God. For as many as have sinned without law shall also perish without law: and as many as have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law; (For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified. Romans 2:11-13

    Oh dear Christian! Fear the Lord and depart from Evil. If you find you do not Fear the Lord, plead with the Father of Lights to grant to you wisdom unto repentance for He alone is the giver of that gift. 2 Timothy 2:25-26

    For the LORD spake thus to me with a strong hand, and instructed me that I should not walk in the way of this people, saying, Say ye not, A confederacy, to all them to whom this people shall say, A confederacy; neither fear ye their fear, nor be afraid. Sanctify the LORD of hosts himself; and let him be your fear, and let him be your dread. And he shall be for a sanctuary; Isaiah 8:11-14

    May the Lord bless and guide you unto all Spiritual understanding. This He promises to all that are His children.


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