Jesus warned His disciples that they would face times of trouble (John 16:33), and the Lord purposefully did this, so they could prepare their hearts beforehand on how they would deal with it.
And then the Lord added in the midst of it, they could still find peace in Christ because He had conquered the world.
It is advice that we need to heed today, as we are witnessing an increasing intolerance to Christianity in America, confirmed in a recent poll conducted by Lifeway in the first two weeks of September 2021.
The poll found that 59% of Americans believe that there is an increasing intolerance to Christianity, and of those, 24% strongly agreed. For the remainder, only 32% said there wasn’t, while 18% said they weren’t sure.
Of course, it was most noticed by those who are on the receiving end of this intolerance, as those with a Christian affiliation, 69% of Protestants and 59% of Catholics, believed this intolerance was growing.
It was particularly noticed by those who have greater respect for the Bible, as among protestants, 74% of Evangelicals noticed a growing intolerance, compared to only 41% of non-evangelicals.
But even those who aren’t Christians are seeing this trend as well. Fifty-two percent of those affiliated with other faiths said they saw a growing intolerance to Christian views, as did 41% of those who don’t identify with a particular faith.
But equally concerning is that 54% of the respondents believed that religious liberty, one of the founding cornerstones of America, is also in decline.
In other words, not only are elements of society becoming increasingly intolerant to Christian views, but there is also an effort underfoot to remove their religious liberties or any protection given to people of faith in the constitution.
Speaking about the growing conflict in society with religious liberty, Lifeway’s executive director, Scott McConnell said:
“Freedoms are not limitless. As some groups seek more freedom, it often encroaches on another’s freedom. It’s not surprising those who are more religiously active are the ones noticing reductions in religious freedom compared to those who don’t practice religion.”
READ: Christians Face Increasing Intolerance? Poll Reveals Americans’ Stunning Take on Faith and Religious Liberty AND Americans Believe Religious Liberty Is Declining, More Believe Christians Face Intolerance