In 2013, the American Bible Society (ABS) surveyed Americans to find out their views and usage of the Bible. The survey is conducted annually on behalf of ABS by the Barna Group, a major surveying company in the U.S.
The survey showed, for example, that one in six people bought a Bible in 2013 and there is an average of 4.4 Bibles per home in America.
But there was one result that did more than reveal their thoughts on the Bible, it also showed the profound concerns Americans have about the dramatic changes taking place in their society. Curiously, the survey also suggested this change is occurring at a very rapid pace.
In 2013, 56% of Americans believed the Bible has too little influence in society. This means that over half of Americans believe the Bible needs to have a bigger influence. But what really caught my attention is the dramatic jump in this percentage between 2012 and 2013. In 2012, when asked this same question, only 47% believed the Bible needed to have more influence in society.
In one year, there was a 9% jump. This is a significant swing in public opinion for any survey and and it took place over the course of just one year. This means that an additional 27 million Americans saw things taking place in their society between 2012 and 2013, that concerned them. They additionally believed the Bible was the solution.
It was confirmed by a similar change on the contrast side. In 2013, 13% believed the Bible had too much influence in America. This represents the people on the opposite side of the spectrum who generally have a negative perception of the Bible.
But that percentage is down from 16% in 2012 — a drop of nearly 20% in just one year. This means even some of those who view the Bible negatively are seeing its declining influence and realize now it is not a good thing.
The question is what happened between 2012 and 2013 to spark such rapid changes in people’s opinions?
The survey revealed a few other things as well.
77% American also believe morals are declining in the US. When asked what was the cause — 32% attributed it to a decline in Bible reading, followed by 29% who blamed the media.
Meanwhile, 57% said they read the Bible less that five times a year. In the 18-28 age group, 57% said they read the Bible less than three times a year.
Faith influence on politics
Another part of the survey I found interesting is the influence faith has on a person’s politics. In the survey:
- 31% believed their faith had a “great influence” on their political views.
- 27% said their faith “somewhat influenced” their political views
- 11% believed their faith had a “little influence” on their political views
- 29% said their faith had “no influence” on their
- 2% said they were unsure
This is just a sample of some of the questions asked, it you would like to read more click on the link below.
- State of the Bible in 2013: American Bible Society
- Surprise, the Bible is Norway’s top selling book: opentheword
- Confessions of a Bible thief: opentheword
- Do you live in the most Bible-minded city in the U.S. or the least?: opentheword