Public Sees Religion’s Influence Waning

Posted: 26 Mar 2015 05:52 AM PDT

Nearly three-quarters of the public (72 percent) now thinks religion is losing influence in American life, up 5 percentage points from 2010 to the highest level in Pew Research polling over the past decade. And most people who say religion’s influence is waning see this as a bad thing.

http://factsandtrends.net/2015/03/26/public-sees-religions-influence-waning/#.VRRAS8so5Fs

Around the year 1510, a delegation of Christians from Sudan, which had been recently overrun by Muslim conquest, went to the Christian Ethiopian court and begged the emperor to send them bishops and priests. The Christians remaining in Sudan needed clergy to lead worship, administer the sacraments, and teach the people. But the emperor refused, sending them away empty-handed.

With no Christian worship, within 100 years Christianity in Sudan became extinct and forgotten until the twentieth century.

That historical moment is a useful example for Christians today.

http://www.faithstreet.com/onfaith/2015/01/23/christianity-cannot-survive-the-decline-in-worship/35932

RESOLVED: Atheists are the New Evangelicals

You know it’s serious when Chuck Norris gets spooked. Non-believers are now a legit voting bloc: seven out of ten people who say they never go to church votedfor Barack Obama in November, and he repaid them with an unprecedented shoutout during his inauguration address.

The “European Disease” has officially jumped the pond.

While the number of self-identifying Christians has fallen 86% in 1990 to 76% today, the ranks of those claim “no religious affiliation” have almost doubled, to 15%. Nearly 4 million Americans now identify as atheists or agnostics, and more non-believers are publicly expressing their lack of faith—groups of non-believers are proliferating on college campuses and social networking sites.

But the battle for hearts and minds will be a long one. Most Americans have a low opinion of non-believers; a 2006 University of Minnesota study found atheists to be the most disliked minority group in America. More than half the country wouldn’t vote for an atheist for President, whereas 72% would vote for a Mormon—there’s some good news for 1012, Mitt. Still, the signs of progress are there: in 1958, 75% wouldn’t pull the lever for a non-believer.

You know it’s serious when Chuck Norris gets spooked. Non-believers are now a legit voting bloc: seven out of ten people who say they never go to church voted for Barack Obama in November, and he repaid them with an unprecedented shoutout during his inauguration address.

The “European Disease” has officially jumped the pond.

While the number of self-identifying Christians has fallen 86% in 1990 to 76% today, the ranks of those claim “no religious affiliation” have almost doubled, to 15%. Nearly 4 million Americans now identify as atheists or agnostics, and more non-believers are publicly expressing their lack of faith—groups of non-believers are proliferating on college campuses and social networking sites.

But the battle for hearts and minds will be a long one. Most Americans have a low opinion of non-believers; a 2006 University of Minnesota study found atheists to be the most disliked minority group in America. More than half the country wouldn’t vote for an atheist for President, whereas 72% would vote for a Mormon—there’s some good news for 1012, Mitt. Still, the signs of progress are there: in 1958, 75% wouldn’t pull the lever for a non-believer.
READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE

What will it take for Christians to make evangelism as important to their spiritual discipline as prayer, quiet time, fasting, worship,journaling and studying the scriptures? The Apostle’s number one priority was to share the gospel and now the church is more concerned with buildings and appearances.

This article shows us how much work we have to do to share the gospel with non believers.  Our mainline denominations are dying not because of a lack of people but because of a lack of engaging the outside world outside of the church in a meaningful way. 

Faith sharing must become a personal life style, congregational value and denominational imperative. The biggest missionary field in the world is right here in the United States. The unconditional love, unmerited favor and total forgiveness that we have expereinced as born again believers is not a gift to be hidden in our sanctuaries and prayer closets but a gift to be shared with all of our neighbors and even the strangers that we meet.

This article set off alarm bells for me. I am committed to social justice and serving the marginalized people of the world.  I support new church plants, multi site church ministry and church yard sales.  This article has called everyone’s ministry to task. Evangelical, Full Gospel, Pentecostal, Baptist, Methodist, Lutheran, AME, and the others that Ihave not named.  I pray that it will challenge and encourage you.  The new evangelist are those of us whose lives have been transformed by our relationship with Jesus Christ. We are the people who carry the Good News. We are the people with the message hope that endures the vicissitudes of life. We are the people with the message of total release from the guilt and stain of sin because of of our living  Savior whose tomb remains empty to this day. It is time to tell our story with power and conviction.  Church as usual is no longer acceptable.  We have some work to do!