A researcher is warning “biblical theism much closer to extinction in America” after the results of a new survey found biblical worldview is dwindling at a rapid and disturbing rate.
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Dr. George Barna, director of the Cultural Research Center (CRC) at Arizona Christian University, issued this alert in a statement Tuesday, revealing just 4% of American adults now have a biblical worldview.
This is down from 6% who said the same just months before the pandemic in January 2020, according to Barna’s “American Worldview Inventory.”
“When you put the data in perspective, the biblical worldview is shuffling toward the edge of the cliff,” Barna said in a statement. “As things stand today, biblical theism is much closer to extinction in America than it is to influencing the soul of the nation.”
He said the current proportion of adults with a biblical worldview — individuals he classifies as “Integrated Disciples” — is the lowest he’s observed since beginning his research in the 1990s.
Just 1% of people between 18 and 29 years old hold a biblical worldview, with Barna warning young people are “largely isolated from biblical thought in our society and are the most aggressive at rejecting biblical principles in our culture.”
A worldview is a lens through which humans see the world around them. And Barna and his team have a specific way of defining what, exactly, a Christian worldview entails.
“The biblical worldview (also known as biblical theism) is defined specifically by the CRC as a means of experiencing, interpreting, and responding to reality in light of biblical perspectives,” a statement explains. “A personal understanding of every idea, opportunity, and experience based on the identification and application of relevant biblical principles so that each choice made may be consistent with God’s principles and commands.”
One of the other benchmarks causing concern is the proportion of Americans who don’t necessarily possess a biblical worldview, yet lean in that direction.
These individuals, known as “Emergent Followers,” accounted for 25% of the public three years ago, but in the latest research wave were just 14%, indicating a substantial drop.
CRC noted that the “World Citizen” group — people who hold to some biblical principles but mostly behave in divergent ways — increased from 69% in 2020 to 82% in 2023.
Read the full report here.
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