WASHINGTON – A vast majority of Americans who call themselves Christians do not hold a biblical worldview, a new study by the Barna Group finds.
Only 17 percent do, the survey showed.
To put it another way, the research “found strong agreement with ideas unique to nonbiblical worldviews among practicing Christians.” The study was commissioned by Summit Ministries.
“This widespread influence upon Christian thinking is evident not only among competing worldviews, but even among competing religions,” Barna said.
In fact, 38 percent held sympathetic views of some Muslim teachings. But it is elements rooted in “new spirituality” that most captivates those identifying themselves as Christians – some 61 percent. Fifty-four percent identified with postmodern beliefs, 36 percent with Marxism and 29 percent with secularism.
“For instance, almost three in 10 … practicing Christians strongly agree that ‘all people pray to the same god or spirit, no matter what name they use for that spiritual being,’” Barna reported.
Another 27 percent say that “becoming one with all that is” provides meaning and purpose to their lives.
Barna said 19 percent of those surveyed agreed that there is no way to determine the meaning and purpose of life.
A large number of Christians also embrace secularism in their worldviews. One of its component beliefs, materialism, holds that the material world is all that exists.
Those respondents told Barna that the purpose of life is “’to earn as much as possible so you can make the most of life.’” That attitude was shared by 20 percent of “Christians,” including by 24 percent of African Americans, 27 percent of Hispanics and 31 percent of Catholics.