Is Christianity Dying?

Is Christianity Dying?

Is Christianity Dying? – Russell D Moore asks rhetorically in an article sent to me by a friend who serves in the ministry, wanting my commentary or insight as Dr. Moore explores the results of the latest Pew Religious Landscape study and what those results mean for the Christian church.

Dr. Moore and others would have you believe that a 6.8% increase in people who don’t identify with any religious group and a combined decrease of people claiming affiliation with Christianity, between mainline and evangelical Protestants plus their Catholic counterparts, of 7.4% is largely due to atheism being in vogue enough for the people that have long sat in the pews without actually maintaining religious belief has given them license to speak up about their lack of faith…as if answering an anonymous poll is risque.

He’s not wrong though, fully – people are currently less afraid of outing themselves as non-believers. That doesn’t account for the whole 6.8% upward trend we are seeing though, and his article fails to apologize for the fact that his own Southern Baptist Convention has contributed to the environment of fear that so many have felt as they come to terms with their beliefs or lack thereof.  Some people that have been sitting in pews sans faith are now admitting it, surely that’s true. I know some of them. Many more are leaving against their own will – because they’ve been overcome with doubt and simply, tragically (at first), find themselves on the other side of faith.

People are becoming non-believers because they are running out of reasons to believe and growing tired of all that belief has meant for them throughout their lives. Good people often encounter a crisis of conscious when they consider all that their beliefs entail – and they either retreat into fundamentalism, find a way to adjust their beliefs to make them more suitable for their actual convictions, or it drives them into a period of discovery and questioning.

All this before I even mention the fact that we live in the information age, wherein we’ve been provided with fingertip access to libraries of knowledge and resources to help us traverse the age old questions of God and religion – thereby narrowing the gaps that god has conveniently called home.

Dr. Moore is afraid of the fact that his faith is changing, that it’s losing the popularity and strength in numbers it’s had for so long in this country- so naturally he’s using fallacious arguments to assert that those who are leaving never belonged in the first place. That’s no surprise, that happens every time one of us stands up and walks out – but those of us who have left know whether or not we believed – we know why we don’t any longer, and we know why it’s easier for Dr. Moore to assume that we never were in it to begin with than to sit across the table from us and simply ask us about our reasons.

These are the inconvenient answers – the truthful reasons why Christianity shrinks at an alarming rate, and while Dr. Moore may believe that this will simply leave more room for the “True Believers” who remain he can never understand that it doesn’t take much faith to believe in something you’ve never bothered to explore and challenge.  More and more believers will find themselves curious and seek out proper answers that their churches and pastors cannot provide – and the next time anyone asks , “Is Christianity Dying?” the answer will be, “Yes, it’s choking on information and the bravery of those who seek it out.”

 

  • If enough people begin to believe that Lima Beans do not exist, then Lima Beans will magically disappear?

  • Lindy Norris

    I’m intrigued with this site because I’ve been a Christian for 20 years and found myself doubting my faith and asking questions and just like these people who leave Christianity as a result of their journey. First of all that journey is never wrong and I think God led me to that place. I searched and searched for answers and I come up out of this all with a stronger faith. Why am I different then all these folks. I’ve traveled the same journey they have to the point of doubting if Jesus Christ even existed at all. But After weighing all the evidence, it makes more sense that He did.

    • I’m glad you are intrigued at the very least, doubt and questions are the focal point of what I do here – and so I’ve done my job.

      What, if you will, would you consider evidence pointing to Jesus and his Christhood? If you want to answer that privately you can hit the Contact Me button on the sidebar and send an email. 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by.

      • Lindy Norris

        I would have to write a book to tell you of my journey away
        from and back to Christ. I looked at all sides from the atheist’s point of view
        to Judaism. Christianity (BIBLICAL Christianity) comes up with less “holes”. I
        go with the one with fewer holes. But I can tell you that the more objectively I
        look at the world, the more convinced I am of God’s existence. And where
        Christianity couldn’t help me, the Bible did. When professional counselors could barely help
        me with a traumatic experience that I went through about 10 years ago, I found
        something in the New Testament that extinguished the mental torment I was going
        through. I had an understanding of what happened and ever since I haven’t
        suffered from PTSD. That hasn’t been the first time that I looked in the Bible
        and found an answer to my problems. There is even scientific evidence to
        support the Bible’s validity, and when I get my hands on it, I will gladly
        shoot it over to you if you want. But I believe that Christianity is coming short.
        I believe that Christianity in today’s terms is so cliché and superficial that
        people are not finding real and lasting help. I coined this phrase and I stick
        by it. Christianity doesn’t work for me, but Christ does.

        • feel free to write that book if you like.

  • Desiderus Lachrimae