As the worldwide COVID pandemic and now nationwide protests and riots leave Americans feeling increasingly unsettled and vulnerable, where are they turning for guidance?
It’s not to their bibles.
The latest results of the inaugural American Worldview Inventory, compiled by renowned author and researcher Dr. George Barna, reveal that a majority of adults today no longer embrace the values of honesty, respect for the rule of law, the sanctity of life and traditional sexual morality when facing moral issues and are nearly three times more likely to depend on themselves or other people for moral guidance (61%) than they are the Bible (23%) when making decisions of morality.
For example, those surveyed were more likely to say it was morally unacceptable to renege on repaying a small debt to a relative (61%) than to have an abortion (44%). When asked their view on engaging in “sexual relations with someone that they love and expect to marry in the future,” a majority (56%) of Americans perceive this behavior to be either morally acceptable (38%) or not a moral issue (18%). Less than half as many (27%) saw it as morally unacceptable.
The seismic shift is not exclusive to or driven by the country’s secular populace, either.
Among the other findings:
- Although born-again Christians in the survey were three times as likely to rely primarily on the Bible for moral guidance, still less than half (48%) do so.
- Those most likely to rely upon a religious resource, usually the Bible, for their primary moral guidance, were those aligned with either an evangelical (58%) or Pentecostal church (62%). Those associated with a mainline Protestant congregation were most likely to rely upon themselves (34%). Catholics are most likely to turn to others (34%).
- Younger Americans (18-29) are least likely (15%) to consider the Bible and more than three times as likely to look to themselves (29%) or family (25%).
According to Barna, the Director of Research at Arizona Christian University’s Cultural Research Center, “Americans have been aggressively redefining morality for the past several decades. The historic foundation of biblical truth and its impacts on family, faith, education, arts and entertainment and public policy in America is mostly a distant memory.”
The findings also show that political ideology dramatically affects sources of moral guidance. Political conservatives were most likely to rely upon the Bible (40%), while moderates (17%) and liberals (11%) were least likely, instead relying on their own feelings, beliefs and knowledge.
“As Americans embrace the consequences of unrestrained moral choices, we will see further rejections of traditional marriage, conventional child-rearing practices and objectives, millions more abortions, excessive substance abuse, and wider acceptance of suicide, polygamy, sexual perversion, and religious persecution. Any society that substitutes humanity’s latest and greatest ideas for God’s truth and authority is on the fast track to ruin,” Barna says.
“Unless Christian churches return to the basics to restore the foundations of the Christian faith, and parents train their children to embrace those foundations, there is little reason to believe that the coming quarter-century in America will include our historical levels of freedom.”
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Source: NEW STUDY: Amidst COVID and riots, where are Americans turning most for guidance?