If you were to watch nothing but the fake news media, prime-time television and Hollywood movies, you would think today’s America is largely and mostly liberal, and more specifically, secular in its beliefs. You would believe that Christianity is on the decline in this country and slowly being left in our nation’s past. And while this would be a dream for the Left, the reality is the complete opposite.
According to new Harvard research, Christianity in the U.S. is growing, not shrinking. The research brought into question the “secularization thesis”. This thesis holds that the U.S. is following in the steps of other advanced industrial nations in shedding their once vibrant culture of faith and moving towards a secular society. The research found no support of this secularization taking place. Not only that, the researchers also found that religion in America currently enjoys “persistent and exceptional intensity.”
A writer for The Federalist (Glenn T. Stanton) tackles this research as well, asking all the right questions such as why church numbers seem to be on the downswing if Christianity is growing, what kind of churches manage to maintain and even grow their numbers while others see dwindling numbers, what is contributing to this growth in faith, and what do we conclude from data about Millennial church-goers and former Christians.
Stanton concludes that, in regards to dwindling church attendance, these numbers do not equate dwindling belief in Christianity.
According to Stanton: “The percentage of Americans who attend church more than once a week, pray daily, and accept the Bible as wholly reliable and deeply instructive to their lives has remained absolutely, steel-bar constant for the last 50 years or more, right up to today. These authors describe this continuity as ‘patently persistent.’”
In other words, statistically speaking, the percentage of people who attend church once a week, pray on a daily basis and accept the Bible as the Word of God is the same today as it was half-century or so ago. And it’s been constant in that entire time-span.
Stanton continues: “The percentage of such people is also not small. One in three Americans prays multiple times a day, while one in 15 do so in other countries on average. Attending services more than once a week continues to be twice as high among Americans compared to the next highest-attending industrial country, and three times higher than the average comparable nation.”
“One-third of Americans hold that the Bible is the actual word of God. Fewer than 10 percent believe so in similar countries. The United States ‘clearly stands out as exceptional,’ and this exceptionalism has not been decreasing over time. In fact, these scholars determine that the percentages of Americans who are the most vibrant and serious in their faith is actually increasing a bit, ‘which is making the United States even more exceptional over time.’”
So it’s not like a small part of the nation falls under this category. Christianity and its fundamental beliefs are widely believed throughout the nation and no other comparable country can even come close (which is actually sad, when you think about it, but it does explain a lot of things *ahem* Europe is screwed *ahem*).
Stanton also shares some more info: “In 1989, 39 percent of those who belonged to a religion held strong beliefs and practices. Today, these are 47 percent of all the religiously affiliated.”
So not only is Christianity growing in numbers, it is also growing in strength. More and more people are coming to faith, and those who are religiously affiliated say they hold strong beliefs and practices.
Pew research reports that “evangelical Protestantism and the historically black Protestant tradition have been more stable” over the years in comparison to mainline churches, which are dwindling in attendance. Stanton notes that there’s even “a slight uptick in the last decade because many congregants leaving the mainline churches are migrating to evangelical churches that hold fast to the fundamentals of the Christian faith.”
So while there have been diminishing numbers of church-goers, there has been a rise in evangelical churches due largely (or perhaps solely) to the fact that they hold true to the fundamental beliefs of Christianity. In other words, people want the real deal and are, understandably, turned off by fake Christianity.
Stanton writes: “When so-called ‘progressive’ churches question the historicity of Jesus, deny the reality of sin, support abortion, ordain clergy in same-sex relationships and perform their marriages, people desiring real Christianity head elsewhere. Fact: evangelical churches gain five new congregants exiled from the liberal churches for every one they lose for any reason. They also do a better job of retaining believers from childhood to adulthood than do mainline churches.”
I can think of a couple of churches that tend to be rather liberal in their teachings, rather than sticking with the actual word of God. Mainly the Roman Catholic Church and the Presbyterian Church of the United States of America (PCUSA). If you belong to either one of these churches, forgive me, but it’s the truth. The amount of times I’ve seen so-called Roman Catholic clergymen and women upholding the liberal and anti-Christian belief that same-sex marriage should be allowed and that abortion is okay, at least in certain occasions, honestly has me worried.
And having actually attended a PCUSA church in the past and having held conversations with the pastor also gave me the opportunity to see just what they believe: the opposite of what Christianity does. I even had conversations with the church’s youth and they all agreed, back before the 2016 election, that they would rather have Obama for a third term than either Clinton or Trump. OBAMA AKA THE MOST ANTI-CHRISTIAN PRESIDENT TO EVER SERVE OFFICE!
So, understandably, my mother and I chose to head elsewhere. We chose to go to a REAL Christian church that taught REAL Christianity. This is the case for many people in America. Those who wish to be taught real Christianity and experience real Christianity leave the churches that don’t offer that, as well they should. What’s the point of calling yourself a Christian if you don’t actually believe in the tenets of the Christian faith? What’s the point of attending a church that isn’t teaching you valuable things about God, Christ, this world that He has created and the Word that He has spoken written down by His followers?
Regardless, let’s move on. The final item we will be looking at, since I don’t want to make this article too long, is Millennials. According to Stanton: “Pew reports that of young adults who left their faith, only 11 percent said they had a strong faith in childhood while 89 percent said they came from a home that had a very weak faith in belief and practice.”
This is not surprising in any way. If you grew up in a family that had very weak faith, there is little reason to stay in that faith. You either are curious enough to search further in the Bible, go to better churches, and become a stronger Christian than your family or, more often than not, you abandon that little faith altogether and simply attribute it to “growing up”.
I know of a lot of people who have been raised in a supposedly “Christian” household who abandoned their faith and believe their secularism is simply due to growing up and maturing. The reality is that weak faith almost always dies eventually. Not all the time, necessarily, but almost always. Particularly if you grow up in a household of weak faith.
Personally, I didn’t grow up in a Christian household. Quite the opposite really. My father was a devout atheist, if you will, who would honestly mock those of faith and consider science to be the ultimate truth, despite the fact that it can’t answer everything and hardly even manages to fully explain what it already tries to explain. Not to say science is a joke, it isn’t. But it’s not the end-all be-all of the truth of our world. Not to mention it doesn’t get much into the Creator of the world.
As I was saying, I didn’t grow up in a Christian household. I used to believe in the theory of evolution until I started to question its logic. How can a species evolve into an entirely different species, even if given millions upon millions of years to do so? It just doesn’t make sense. A species evolving and adapting to better survive its environment? That makes sense. A species evolving into an entirely different species altogether that acts entirely different from its previous type? Nope, that’s illogical.
But I used to believe these things. I didn’t have faith in Christ, but now I do simply because it’s the most logical thing to do. It’s not that we had weak faith. We didn’t HAVE faith. My father, most likely, still doesn’t. But as for my mother and I, we have faith and it’s a STRONG one.
What I’m trying to say is that those of weak faith could most likely lose that faith altogether. But sometimes, that weak faith, or even lack of faith, can turn into strong faith. Relatively similar to my situation, I also know of some scientists who sought to disprove the Bible who wound up converting.
As for Millennials (and just about everyone else), all it takes is a family of strong faith. Millennials are just another generation not too dissimilar to the previous ones. Strong faith is difficult to kill.
Overall, the research from Harvard is fantastic news that really challenges the Left’s belief that Christianity is on the down-slide and conservatives are panicking over it. Reality, as always, is entirely different from what they claim it is.
Not only is Christianity not on the down-swing, but it’s also growing in numbers AND in strength of belief, at least in the United States. I don’t quite know about the rest of the world but, considering what is currently happening in Europe and Latin America, it’s reasonable to believe things aren’t quite going so well, particularly because of the seeming rise of socialism just about everywhere in those areas.
Although the interesting thing about socialism is that, despite all its efforts, it can lead many to Christ. If socialism and communism managed to do exactly what they wanted, there wouldn’t be people of faith in North Korea trying to escape. There wouldn’t be underground churches in China.
An oppressive government tends to drive people to God, even if those people practice in secret rather than openly. So no matter which way you slice it, the Lord winds up being the winner anyway.
In America, this is exceptionally true.
“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
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