There is bad news for America. There is a saying that says, “as goes the Church, so goes the world”.
The meaning of this statement is to reflect that if the Church is on the decline, the world will be on the decline. If there is a growth in immorality as a result of the shrinking Church, there will also be a growth of immorality in the world.
And according to a recent study, American Christianity is expected to decline severely over the next 50 years.
The study modeled four scenarios representing different rates of change to predict that the nation’s most-common religion could represent less than half the nation’s population over the next generation.
“Depending on whether religious switching continues at recent rates, speeds up or stops entirely, the projections show Christians of all ages shrinking from 64% to between a little more than half (54%) and just above one-third (35%) of all Americans by 2070,” the study reported.
“Over that same period, ‘nones’ would rise from the current 30% to somewhere between 34% and 52% of the U.S. population,” it added.
In 1972, when the GSS first began asking Americans, “What is your religious preference?” 90% identified as Christian and 5% were religiously unaffiliated. In the next two decades, the share of “nones” crept up slowly, reaching 9% in 1993. But then disaffiliation started speeding up – in 1996, the share of unaffiliated Americans jumped to 12%, and two years later it was 14%. This growth has continued, and 29% of Americans now tell the GSS they have “no religion.”7
Pew Research Center has been measuring religious identity since 2007 using a slightly different question wording – “What is your present religion, if any?” – as well as a different set of response options. Since 2007, the percentage of adults who say they are atheist, agnostic or “nothing in particular” in the Center’s surveys has grown from 16% to 29%. During this time, the share of U.S. adults who identify as Christian has fallen from 78% to 63%.
As recently as the 1990s, about 90% of U.S. adults identified as Christians. This figure has declined to about two-thirds of adults. This change is largely the result of large numbers of adults switching out of Christianity to become unaffiliated. https://t.co/VBjNhp2XgPpic.twitter.com/F8Igx2awwt
Let me give my thoughts on this as an American Christian.
First, let me say that I am very serious and sincere about my beliefs. I’ve spent the last 18 years that I’ve been a Christian heavily immersed in studying theology and the bible. If you could see my book shelves, you would see that there is more than one entire bookcase full of books related to the study of theology. My books range from topic that you may be familiar with such as eschatology (study of last things aka end times) and baptism, to thing that you’ve likely never even heard about such as the New Perspective on Paul, Ancient Near Eastern studies, and Molinism.
As such, I am well studied. I am optimistic about the future. I do not believe like most mainstream churches that the world is getting worse in preparation for the Antichrist to come. I think that the world is getting better. Many want to focus on how bad things have gotten recently, but I would say that you’re looking at too narrow of a sample. Rather than looking at the last 20-50 years, let’s zoom out and look at the last 1000-2000 years. Is the world a better place than it was 2000 years ago? Are there more Christians in the world than 2000 years ago? I would say that “yes” is the answer to both of those questions.
So even if Christianity dips off in America, it doesn’t affect much. There is no promise in scripture that the United States will be preserved and that we’ll live in peace as a Christian nation. There could be other nations that become the dominant Christian nation. I think China could very well do this within a few decades.
But I’ll say one more thing. I do think that America will have a shift as some point. As our technology continues to increase, more discoveries are being made that confirm the biblical account of history and prove the authenticity of the bible. Couple that with the impossibility for life to arise from non-life and the impossibility for matter to spontaneously appear out of nowhere as a result of nothing doing nothing, and I think you have a strong case for the existence of God.