PHILADELPHIA – The American Bible Society recently released its report on the State of the Bible 2019. The report is published annually based on research conducted by the Barna Group.
The annual report “examines behaviors and beliefs related to the Bible among American adults.”
An overview of the report divides Americans into five (5) distinct groups of people by shared perspectives. The identification and percentage of Americans aligned with each group shed an amazing amount of light on the state of America today.
|Bible Centered||These people interact with the Bible frequently. It is transforming their relationships and shaping their choices.||5%|
|Bible Engaged||These people interact with the Bible frequently. It is transforming their relationship with God and others.||19%|
|Bible Friendly||The people interact with the Bible consistently. It may be a source of spiritual wisdom and insight.||19%|
|Bible Neutral||These people interact with the Bible sporadically. It has little spiritual influence, but that influence may be growing.||9%|
|Bible Disengaged||These people interact with the Bible infrequently, if at all. It has minimal impact on their lives.||48%|
The disparity between Bible Centered & Bible Engaged and the other three groups is both enormous and disturbing. Fewer than 25% of our population claim to interact with the Bible frequently.
Only 5% depend on the Bible to shape their choices and transform their relationships.
The analysts claim that this overview is encouraging because the percentage of Disengaged is down by 9% from 2018. However, the combined margin of error for both years is +/- 2.9% at the 95% confidence level – close enough to erase all or most of that apparent decline.
More disturbing is that the 43% who are Friendly, Engaged, or Centered may be regular church-goers – of whom only about 10% consider God’s Word to shape their choices. It may be safe to assume that the sporadic Neutrals are the Christmas-Easter church attendees.
If the information and the assumptions herein are correct, only 5% of the 1,001 respondents would be described by Jesus Christ in Matthew 7 as a wise man who builds his house upon a rock. The wise man, Jesus said, is the one who hears the Word and then lets the Word shape his choices.
He likens those who interact with the Bible, regardless of how frequently they do so, but fail to allow it to influence their choices as foolish men.
The Bible definition of a fool is a man who says in his heart, “There is no God.” (Psalm 53:1) To interact with God’s Word but fail to allow it to guide our choices has the same effect as saying that there is no God.
That being true, America is standing in the need of prayer.
Missions Box News is not here to judge but we would be remiss if we did not share and explain the news so that our readers understand it in the light of the Word of God.
Join us, if you would, in examining our individual hearts and minds relative to how much we interact with the Bible and allow it to shape our choices the way the Lord intended for it to do.
To read more news on the Bible on Missions Box, go here.
- American Bible Society, State of the Bible 2019
- Barna Group, State of the Bible 2019: Trends in Engagement