Christians are monotheists, that is,. Christians believe that there is only one God, whom they call Father, as Jesus Christ taught them. They recognize Jesus as the Son of God and believe that God functions as a Trinity. Before going into the 7 fundamental beliefs of Christianity, let's look at one of the most famous creeds used throughout the history of the church, the Apostles' Creed.
Previous studies by the Pew Research Center have shown that the proportion of Americans who believe in God with absolute certainty has declined in recent years, while the proportion who say they have doubts about the existence of God—or who don't believe in God at all—has increased. A new Pew Research Center survey in more than 4,700 U.S. UU. Adults discover that a third of Americans say they don't believe in the God of the Bible, but that they do believe that there is some other higher power or spiritual force in the universe.
A scant majority of Americans (56%) say they believe in God “as described in the Bible”. And one in ten doesn't believe in any higher power or spiritual force. In the United States,. In fact, almost three-quarters of religious “nones” (72%) believe in some kind of higher power, even if not in God, as described in the Bible.
The survey questions that mention the Bible don't specify any particular verse or translation, leaving each respondent to understand. But other survey questions make it clear that Americans who claim to believe in God “as described in the Bible,” generally imagine an all-powerful, omniscient, and loving deity who determines most or all of what happens in their lives. Conversely, people who claim to believe in a “higher power or spiritual force” —but not in God as described in the Bible—are much less likely to believe in a deity who is omnipotent, omniscient, benevolent, and active in human affairs. Overall, about half of Americans (48%) say that God or another higher power directly determines what happens in their lives all or most of the time.
An additional 18% say that God or some other higher power determines what happens to them “only part of the time.”. Nearly eight out of ten United States,. Adults think that God or a higher power has protected them, and two-thirds say they have been rewarded by the Almighty. By comparison, some fewer see God as critical and punitive.
Six out of ten Americans say that God or a higher power will judge all people for what they have done, and four out of ten say they have been punished by God or by the spiritual force that they believe is at work in the universe. In addition, the survey reveals that three-quarters of American adults say they are trying to talk to God (or another higher power in the universe), and approximately three out of ten Americans,. Adults say that God (or a higher power) responds. The survey also asked separately about prayer rates.
People who pray regularly are especially likely to say that they talk to God and that God speaks to them. However, the survey shows that praying and talking to God are not fully interchangeable. For example, four out of ten people (39%) who say they rarely or never pray, yet report that they talk to God. Those who answered “yes” (80% of all respondents) received a follow-up question asking them to clarify whether they believed in “God” as described in the Bible or if they “don't believe in God as described in the Bible, but do believe that there is some other higher power or spiritual force in the universe.”.
The majority of people in this group—in fact, a small majority of all Americans (56%) —say they believe in God as described in the Bible. Those who answered the first question saying they don't believe in God (19% of all respondents) also received a follow-up question. They were asked to clarify if “they don't believe in God as described in the Bible, but they do believe that there is some other higher power or spiritual force in the universe or, on the contrary, “they don't believe that there is ANY higher power or spiritual force in the universe.”. Of this group, approximately half (10 per cent of the United States,.
(Adults) say they don't believe in any higher power or spiritual force of any kind. In total, a third of those surveyed ultimately say that even though they don't believe in the God of the Bible, they do believe in a higher power or spiritual force of some kind, including 23% who initially said they believed in God and 9% who initially said they didn't believe in God. Why, then, is this an opportune time to conduct a new survey that explores American beliefs about God? These trends raise a variety of questions. When Americans say they don't believe in God, what exactly do they reject? Is it just the number of Americans who believe in God that is changing, or are the underlying beliefs and concepts of God changing as well? How many Americans today view God as an all-powerful being who continually intercedes in their lives, distributing punishments or rewards? And how many believe in some other type of spiritual force (one that, for example, may be less critical or less active in human affairs)? The current survey includes many new questions designed to begin to address these issues.
However, one thing the new survey cannot do is provide a direct indication of how beliefs about God have changed in recent years. There are a couple of reasons for that. First, the wording of many questions in the new survey is different from the wording of the questions in previous Pew Research Center surveys. Second, the way the new survey (online) was administered differs from the way the previous Pew Research Center surveys were conducted (phone).
For both reasons, it is not possible to make direct comparisons with previous surveys to measure changes over time. However, the new survey can help illuminate how Americans conceive of God at this particular time and also establish a basis for future studies that can go further to establish how and why beliefs about God are changing over time. When asked additional questions about what they believe to be God or another higher power in the universe, those who believe in God, as described in the Bible, and those who believe in another type of higher power or spiritual force express substantially different points of view. In short, those who believe in the God of the Bible tend to perceive a more powerful, knowledgeable, benevolent, and active deity.
For example, almost all adults who claim to believe in the God of the Bible say that they think that God loves all people regardless of their faults, and that God has protected them. More than nine out of ten people who believe in the biblical God imagine a deity who knows everything that is happening in the world, and almost nine out of ten say that God has rewarded them and that he has the power to direct or change everything that happens in the world. Far fewer people who believe in some other higher power or spiritual force (but not in the God of the Bible) attribute these attributes and actions to that higher power. Even so, even among this group, half or more say they believe that another higher power in the universe loves all people (69%), is omniscient (53%), has protected them (68%) and rewarded them (53%).
Belief in God, as described in the Bible, is most pronounced among the United States. Overall, eight out of ten self-identified Christians say they believe in the God of the Bible, while one in five doesn't believe in the biblical description of God, but do believe in some kind of higher power. Very few self-identified Christians (only 1%) say they don't believe in any higher power at all. When asked about a variety of possible attributes or characteristics of God, U.S.
Christians, in general, paint a portrait that reflects common Christian teachings about God. For example, 93% of Christians believe that God (or another higher power in the universe) loves all people, regardless of their faults. Nearly nine out of ten (87%) say that God knows everything that is happening in the world. And approximately eight out of ten (78%) believe that God has the power to direct or change everything that happens in the world.
Christians believe that God possesses these three attributes: that deity is loving, omniscient, and omnipotent. However, the survey finds significant differences in the way various Christian subgroups perceive God. For example, while nine out of ten people in the historically black (92%) and evangelical (91%) Protestant and evangelical traditions say they believe in God as described in the Bible, a smaller majority of Protestants and mainstream Catholics claim to have faith in the biblical God1, a sizeable minority of Catholics (28%) and Mainstream Protestants (26%) say they believe in a higher power or a spiritual force, but not in God as described in the Bible. Similarly, while approximately nine out of ten followers of the historically black Protestant tradition (91%) and evangelicals (87%) believe that God is all loving, omniscient, and all-powerful, only six out of ten top Catholics and Protestants say that God possesses all three attributes.
Evangelicals and those who belong to the historically black Protestant tradition are also more likely than members of other major United States,. Christian traditions say that God has protected, rewarded and punished them personally. But in all subgroups, Christians are much more likely to say that God has protected and rewarded them than that God has punished them. See chapter 2 for more information.
About a quarter of religious “nones” (27%) say they don't believe in any kind of higher power. But there are big differences based on how, exactly, the members of this group describe their religious identity. None of the respondents who describe themselves as atheists believe in God as described in the Bible. However, approximately one in five believes in some other type of higher power or spiritual force in the universe (18%).
Approximately eight out of ten self-described atheists (81%) say they don't believe in any kind of higher power. Self-described agnostics look very different from atheists in this matter. While very few agnostics (3%) say they believe in God as described in the Bible, a clear majority (62%) say they believe in some other type of spiritual force. Only three out of ten say that there is no higher power in the universe.
Respondents who describe their religion as “nothing in particular” are even more likely to express their belief in a deity; nine out of ten take this position, reflecting the U.S. stance. While most people in this “nothing in particular” group believe in a spiritual force other than the biblical God (60%), a sizeable minority (28%) say they do believe in God as described in the Bible. The survey also shows that, compared to older adults, those under 50 generally view God as less powerful and less involved in earthly affairs than older Americans.
However, at the same time, young adults are somewhat more likely than their elders to say that they believe they have been personally punished by God or by a higher power in the universe. Adults with a secondary education or lower, two-thirds say they believe in God as described in the Bible. Far fewer adults who have obtained any form of college education say they believe in God as described in the Bible (53%). And among college graduates, less than half (45%) say they believe in the biblical God.
The data also shows that, compared to those with lower educational levels, college graduates are less likely to believe that God (or another higher power in the universe) is active and involved in the world and in their personal lives. For example, while approximately half of college graduates (54%) say they have been rewarded by God, two-thirds of those with some form of college education (68%) and three-quarters of those with secondary education or less (75%) say the same thing. And only a third of college graduates say that God determines all or most of what happens in their lives, far below the proportion of people who say this among people with less education. Republicans and Democrats have very different notions about God.
Among Republicans and those who lean towards the Republican Party, seven out of ten say they believe in God as described in the Bible. Democrats and those who lean toward Democrats, on the other hand, are much less likely to believe in God as described in the Bible (45%), and are more likely than Republicans to believe in another type of higher power (39% versus. Democrats are also more likely than Republicans to say they don't believe in any higher power or spiritual force in the universe (14% versus. In addition, while 85% of Republicans believe that God loves all people, eight out of ten believe that God knows everything and seven out of ten believe that God is all-powerful; Democrats are less likely to express each of these views.
Two-thirds of Republicans say they believe God possesses these three attributes, compared to about half of Democrats (49%). Republicans are also more likely than Democrats to say that God has protected, rewarded, or punished them (see chapter. In stark contrast to non-white Democrats, only a third of white Democrats say they believe in God as described in the Bible, while 21% don't believe in any kind of higher power. And only one in three white Democrats say they believe that God (or other higher power in the universe) is omniscient, all-powerful, and loving.
About the Pew Research Center The Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan data center that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends that shape the world. Conducts public opinion surveys, demographic research, media content analysis and other empirical research in social sciences. The Pew Research Center does not adopt political positions. It is a subsidiary of The Pew Charitable Trusts.
Christians believe that God is three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. There are indications in the Bible about this holy mystery. The Christian Church believes in a baptism in the Christian church, whether as a baby or as an adult, as an external sign of an internal commitment to the teachings of Jesus. Believing in a biblical God is much more common among Christians who attend church than among non-practicing Christians (those who don't attend church more than a few times a year).
Because I think many of the Christians I would talk to don't necessarily talk about God as creator. For example, the majority (72%) of Swiss Christians who attend religious services at least once a month say that God speaks to them monthly or more, but only 36% of Christians who attend less frequently say so, as do only 3% of Swiss people not affiliated with a religion. However, these patterns were not unanimous; some Christians expressed doubts about God or described deity in a more abstract way, while several adults not affiliated with religion mentioned belief in a biblical God or in a more abstract power, as a source of balance in the universe or a connecting force all living things. Christian participants generally used the word “God” or a masculine pronoun and talked about the characteristics that are often associated with God in the Bible, a powerful deity who knows everything and sees everything, while many adults not affiliated with the religion said they don't believe in God at all.
Christians believe in justification by faith, that by believing in Jesus as the Son of God and in his death and resurrection, they can have a right relationship with God, whose forgiveness was made once and for all through the death of Jesus Christ. Christians believe that the Holy Spirit changes the way they think and act, for example, by allowing them to forgive someone who has hurt them where it was previously impossible to forgive. Similarly, Christians who attend church services at least once a month are much more likely than other Christians to say that God has personally rewarded or punished them, or that they regularly communicate with God. While the real nature of this life is unknown, Christians believe that many spiritual experiences in this life help give them an idea of what eternal life will be like.
In fact, even though the 15 countries surveyed are historically Christian, and almost all of them still have Christian majorities, fewer respondents who say they believe in God “as described in the Bible” than say they believe in “some other higher power or spiritual force”. While many could give a description of God or of a higher power, many of the participants not affiliated with religion and even some Christians gave reasons why they do not believe that such a being or force exists. . .