MAJORITY OF AMERICANS BELIEVE BEING A GOOD PERSON IS SUFFICIENT

A new survey shows that the majority of Americans no longer believe that Jesus is the path to salvation and instead believe that being a good person is sufficient.

As part of the ongoing release of the Arizona Christian University-based Cultural Research Center’s American Worldview Inventory, the latest findings — exploring perceptions of sin and salvation — from George Barna, the group’s director, show that nearly two-thirds of Americans believe that having some kind of faith is more important than the particular faith with which someone aligns. 

Sixty-eight percent who embrace that notion identify as Christians, including 56% of self-described evangelicals and 62% of those who identify as Pentecostals. Sixty-seven percent of mainline Protestants and 77% of Catholics also embraced that idea, the findings show.

Slightly over half of Christian respondents said they believe someone can attain salvation by “being or doing good,” a figure that includes, 46% of Pentecostals, 44% of mainline Protestants, 41% of evangelicals, and 70% of Catholics.

In addition to the viewpoint that eternal salvation can be earned, survey results show that 58% of Americans believe that no absolute moral truth exists and that the basis of truth are factors or sources other than God. Seventy-seven percent said that right and wrong is determined by factors other than the Bible. Fifty-nine percent said that the Bible is not God’s authoritative and true Word and 69% said people are basically good.

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6

Most people contend that all faiths are of equal value, that entry into God’s eternal presence is determined by one’s personal means of choice and that there are no absolutes to guide or grow us morally.

The philosophy of life now held by most Americans contradicts a fundamental basis of what may be the two most significant documents to the longevity and success of America – the Bible and the Constitution of the United States.

Those documents agree that this nation will only be healthy and fruitful if it is populated by moral people. By abandoning their moral standards and traditions, and replacing them with inclusive and conditional preferences, they are losing the foundations that have enabled the ‘American experiment’ to succeed for more than two centuries. We can only hope that their critical moral institutions — particularly the family and the church — will wake up and help the nation to get back on track.

DO YOU BELIEVE JESUS WILL RETURN IN YOUR LIFETIME?

THE GOOD NEWS IS THAT A MAJORITY OF EVANGELICAL BLACK PASTORS IN THE USA DO

Most pastors serving at evangelical and historically black churches see some current events lining up with what Jesus said would happen shortly before His second coming, according to a new poll on Christian eschatology from LifeWay Research.

Over half believe Christ will return during their lifetimes. These sentiments were expressed in January before the prospect of a global pandemic became known.

On Tuesday, the Southern Baptist polling research firm released results from from a phone survey, conducted between Jan. 24 and Feb. 11, of 1,000 senior pastors, ministers or priests who were randomly called from a list of evangelical and historically black churches in the United States.

90% of pastors see at least some current events “matching those Jesus said would occur shortly before He returns to Earth.”

56% of pastors either strongly or somewhat agreed with the statement: “I expect Jesus to return in my lifetime.”

24% said they were “not sure,” while 20 % either strongly or somewhat disagreed with the statement

97% of pastors said they believe Christ will return to Earth again.

The respondent pastors were asked to identify from a list whether they see certain “types of current events” as the “birth pains” that Jesus referred to when He was asked by His disciples when he would return. 

79% of pastors surveyed agreed that one birth pain of Christ’s return is “traditional morals becoming less accepted.”

75 percent of pastors said that “the number of people abandoning their Christian faith” is a birth pain.

81 percent agreed that “the love of many believers growing cold” is also a birth pain of Christ’s return.

78 percent of pastors said “wars and national conflicts” are also a birth pain

76 percent agreed that “earthquakes and other natural disasters” are indicators of the second coming. 

70 percent of pastors surveyed said that “famines” are another birth pain

The fear that the historic locust infestation taking place in East Africa right now could cause severe hunger and potential famine due to the destruction of crops is a good indicator this prophesied event is underway.

63 percent of pastors surveyed said that “worldwide anti-Semitism” is another indicator that Christ’s return might be near

83% of pastors surveyed agreed that the “rise of false prophets and false teachings” is a birth pain.

69% percent of pastors surveyed somewhat agreed that the “modern rebirth of the State of Israel and the re-gathering of millions of Jewish people show Christ’s return is closer.” Sadly, 27% indicated they either strongly or somewhat disagreed with that statement. 

Eighty-six percent of pastors surveyed said they attended Bible college or seminary. 

60 % of pastors surveyed said they believe the ideas of “premillennialism” best describe their views on the millennium described in Revelation 20, where it is said that Christ shall reign “a thousand years following His second coming.”

21% said that they believe more in the idea of “amillennialism” — the view that the “millennium is a symbolic way of describing the period between Christ’s ascension and second coming where Christ is reigning spiritually.”

9% said their beliefs align more with the theory of “postmillennialism,” which is the belief that the “the millennium is not a literal 1,000 years, but an era in which the world will gradually grow more Christian and just ending with Christ’s second coming.”

73% believe “Christ will return and reign in Jerusalem in fulfilment of God’s prophecies to King David.”

60% of pastors surveyed said they believe that teaching on Revelation and Old Testament prophecies is “important.” Meanwhile, 89 percent said that communicating the “urgency of Christ’s return” is also important. 

“For too long many pastors have shied away from teaching on birth pains and events leading up to the second coming,” bestselling evangelical author Joel Rosenberg said in a statement. “But the current pandemic demonstrates the need for solid, non-sensational preaching done in a biblical manner.”

The LifeWay survey was sponsored by Chosen People Ministries, Alliance for the Peace of Jerusalem, Rich and Judy Hastings and the Hendricks Center at Dallas Theological Seminary. The research has a margin of error of 3.2 percentage points.