The United States may be a nation under God, and rightly so just as our Founding Fathers believed and praised and thanked the King of Kings for their free country, America, they founded. But, unfortunately it’s increasingly one that isn’t recognizing the power above it.
It is hard to believe, but in a new Gallop poll, fewer Americans believe in God than at other time across the 78 years of being asked that question.
In 1944, 98% of Americans identified themselves as believers. That number remained in 1947, as it did throughout the 1950’s and 1960’s. However, American faith took a dive in 2011 when only 92% answered yes.
Two years later, the number had dropped five points, It than steadied through 2017, the last time Gallup surveyed the country on their belief in God.
And now, in 2022, some might say a more difficult year than many since the mid-twentieth century, only 81% of the nation’s population now believe in the existence of a higher power.
The reasons for the drop are probably what you would expect, as belief in God has fallen the most in recent years among young adults and people of the left of the political spectrum (liberals and Democrats). These groups show drops of 10% or more, comparing the 2022 figures to an average of the 2013-2017 polls.
Most other key subgroups have experienced at least a modest decline, although conservatives and married adults have had essentially no change.
The groups with the largest declines are also the groups that are currently least likely to believe in God, including liberals (62 percent), young adults (68 percent) and Democrats (72 percent). Belief in God is highest among political conservatives (94 percent) and Republicans (92 percent), reflecting that religiosity is a major determinant of political divisions in the United States.
As faith fades, in what do we believe instead? As suggested by signs around us, we believe in ourselves. And not only that, but a new morality insists that’s the most righteous faith of all.
Sadly, it isn’t so. Despite the greatness of the song, the greatest love of all isn’t that which we have for ourselves. In an earlier time and for thousands of years, such affection was identified as “selfishness.” A great love, as was stated long ago, is the sort in which one will “lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”
We were also once instructed to “to do to others as we would have them do to us.”
In both cases, virtue was defined by one’s treatment of and consideration for those around them. Such was a moral law, but perhaps those can only exist if there is a God.
In the absence of God and of law, we may then focus wholly on ourselves, And in that case, we are each a god. Such appears to be a popular pursuit; contemporary righteousness calls us to be “empowered.”
How is empowerment working out? According to cultural cues, it would seem not well, we are empowered, only so long as everyone tell us so. Any refusal to confirm our strength causes harm and must be stopped.
If that’s our best attempt at power, we haven’t got a prayer.
Here is more from Gallup: A follow-up question in the survey probed further into what Americans’ belief in God entails. Specifically, the question asked whether God hears prayers and whether God intervenes when people pray.
About half of those who believe in God, equal to 42% of all Americans, say God hears prayers and can intervene on a person’s behalf. Meanwhile, 28% of all Americans say God hears prayers but cannot intervene, while 11% think God does neither.
Nearly three-quarters of the most religious Americans, defined as those who attend religious services every week, say they believe God hears prayers and can intervene, as do slightly more than half of conservatives and Republicans, as well as 25% of liberals and 32% of Democrats. Thirty percent of young adults believe God hears prayers and can intervene.
Where is America headed? Wherever it is, the youth of today will be our guides, And if the trend concerning faith continues, we’ll arrive there alone, without the leadership or companionship of a recognized Creator, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
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