Why is Christianity declining in the US and other advanced / technological / educated nations?

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Why is Christianity declining in the US and other advanced / technological / educated nations?

Post #1

Post by Zzyzx »

Why is Christianity declining in the US and other advanced / technological / educated nations (particularly among younger generations)?
New Pew survey finds self-identified US Christians dropped 12% in a decade, as number of those claiming no religious affiliation surged

Over the last decade, the share of Americans who say they attend religious services at least once or twice a month dropped by 7 percentage points, while the share who say they attend religious services less often — if at all — rose by the same degree.

Empty Tomb, a Christian organization based in Champaign, Illinois, that researches religious giving, says the decline is longstanding. According to its research, Americans gave about 3% of their disposable income to churches in 1968, and less than 2.2% in 2016.
https://www.timesofisrael.com/decline-o ... oll-finds/
The number of Americans who call themselves Christian declined from 77% ten years ago to 65% in 2019. What is worse (or better), the absolute number of Christians declined. In 2019, the country had thirteen million fewer Christians at one hundred sixty-six million.

Protestants have nine million fewer members, two million less born-again’s, and seven million less non-born-again’s. Catholics are down by two million. Mormons were up slightly, but their % remained the same at 2%.

People who identified themselves as atheists, agnostics, or “nothing in particular” increased by twenty-seven million to sixty-seven million people. Today, 17% of Americans say they never attend religious services up from 11% a decade ago.
The data also shows a wide gap between older Americans and Millennials in their levels of religious affiliation and attendance. People born between 1928 and 1945 describe themselves as Christians 84% of the time. Baby Boomers only 76% of the time. In stark contrast, only 49% of Millenials describe themselves as Christian. Four-in-ten Millenials described themselves as “nones,” and one-in-ten identified with non-Christian faith.
http://churchandstate.org.uk/2020/06/u- ... apid-pace/
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Re: Why is Christianity declining in the US and other advanced / technological / educated nations?

Post #41

Post by Zzyzx »

Quantrill wrote: Wed Jul 01, 2020 1:52 pm
Zzyzx wrote: Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:58 am
Is this to say that the crowd considered his words truthful?
It is to say exactly what I said it does. They were angry at His words against them. They offered no accusation of His being a fraud as you have...... due to your bias against Him and your ignorance of the Bible. I'm still waiting for all this help you're going to provide for Christians concerning our Book, the Bible. Let me know when it starts.
Since you seem to be a bit hesitant to accept help from a Non-Christian, perhaps you should consult Christian author Laura J. Davis:
Getting back to the verses at hand, after Jesus finished reading to the people he said, “Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” And of course, everyone who heard him was impressed with this statement. In their minds, they thought he was going to help people by seeing what he could do to make their lives easier. They were thinking in physical terms. Being under oppressive Roman rule, they believed Jesus was going to do something about it. They didn’t get the deeper picture of what he was saying, and they also missed the significance of where he stopped reading. Jesus stopped in the middle of verse two. Why? Because what he was saying was an announcement to all that the Lord was amongst them. The Messiah had come and was in their midst, “To proclaim the year of HaShem’s good pleasure.” The time had finally arrived for all to meet and receive their Messiah. Which was why Jesus didn’t finish the verse because if he had, he would also have been proclaiming “the day of vengeance of our G-d; to comfort all that mourn.” He didn’t come the first time to bring judgment or vengeance. He came to save. That’s why he didn’t finish the verse.

<Snip>

But when Jesus saw how the people were reacting to his words he realized they didn’t understand his meaning. So he needed to get their attention, and he said, “Verily I say unto you, no prophet is accepted in his own country” (Luke 4:24).

Imagine you have known Jesus since he was a little boy. Your children grew up playing with him. Now here he is reading the Scriptures on the Sabbath, and you are impressed and delighted that he has chosen to serve the people. But then you sit up, and you cock your head a little and think to yourself, “Did he just say he was a prophet?” So now you are listening a little closer. Then Jesus does the unthinkable. He compares everyone in the synagogue to the faithless Jews of Elijah and Elisha’s time and suggests it would be Gentiles instead who would enjoy the blessings of God because the Jews would reject their prophet (Luke 4:25-27). Well, that got their attention big time. They were angry. How dare Jesus suggest that people like those idol-worshipping Romans would experience God’s blessings! The Jews were God’s chosen people, not the Gentiles!
https://www.laurajdavis.com/biblestudie ... t-nazareth
Ms. Davis seems to be saying that the audience rejected Jesus because he was their prophet and messiah.

How could he be anything BUT a fraud if he falsely (in their mind at least) claimed to be their messiah / prophet?


AND Randall Niles Christian author:
This is profound. Jesus returns to the town where he grew up and starts a public ministry. One Saturday, he goes to the front of the synagogue – the Jewish house of worship where he spent many Saturdays as a kid -- and reads a famous Messianic passage from the Prophet Isaiah. He finishes the prophecy – one that Jewish people had read for nearly 700 years – by identifying himself as the one spoken of by Isaiah.

Jesus rejected in his hometown of Nazareth – The Result

Can you imagine? You’ve grown up with this guy. You were in woodshop together at school. He’s the son of Joseph and Mary -- just regular townspeople. After thirty-something years of appearing “normal,” Jesus goes off and gets baptized by John at the river, runs off to the mountains for 40 days, and comes back revealing himself as the long-awaited Messiah to his hometown congregation.

Needless to say, the people were a bit skeptical.
Then, Jesus calls them out and challenges their doubt. He points to past Hebrew generations that also doubted the scriptures and the prophets. Ultimately, the townspeople get angry and even try to kill Jesus by throwing him off a local hillside.

All the people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. They got up, drove him out of the town, and took him to the brow of the hill on which the town was built, in order to throw him off the cliff. But he walked right through the crowd and went on his way. (Luke 4:28-30)

In the end, Jesus is rejected in his hometown of Nazareth. He escapes the mob, but is run out of town.
https://drivethruhistory.com/jesus-reje ... -nazareth/
Mr. Niles says clearly that people of Nazarath were angry because Jesus 'revealed himself as the long-awaited messiah”. That was clearly (in their minds at least) a fraudulent claim – they would not likely have thrown a true messiah off a cliff.
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Re: Why is Christianity declining in the US and other advanced / technological / educated nations?

Post #42

Post by Quantrill »

Zzyzx wrote: Wed Jul 01, 2020 3:04 pm
Since you seem to be a bit hesitant to accept help from a Non-Christian, perhaps you should consult Christian author Laura J. Davis:
Getting back to the verses at hand, after Jesus finished reading to the people he said, “Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” And of course, everyone who heard him was impressed with this statement. In their minds, they thought he was going to help people by seeing what he could do to make their lives easier. They were thinking in physical terms. Being under oppressive Roman rule, they believed Jesus was going to do something about it. They didn’t get the deeper picture of what he was saying, and they also missed the significance of where he stopped reading. Jesus stopped in the middle of verse two. Why? Because what he was saying was an announcement to all that the Lord was amongst them. The Messiah had come and was in their midst, “To proclaim the year of HaShem’s good pleasure.” The time had finally arrived for all to meet and receive their Messiah. Which was why Jesus didn’t finish the verse because if he had, he would also have been proclaiming “the day of vengeance of our G-d; to comfort all that mourn.” He didn’t come the first time to bring judgment or vengeance. He came to save. That’s why he didn’t finish the verse.

<Snip>

But when Jesus saw how the people were reacting to his words he realized they didn’t understand his meaning. So he needed to get their attention, and he said, “Verily I say unto you, no prophet is accepted in his own country” (Luke 4:24).

Imagine you have known Jesus since he was a little boy. Your children grew up playing with him. Now here he is reading the Scriptures on the Sabbath, and you are impressed and delighted that he has chosen to serve the people. But then you sit up, and you cock your head a little and think to yourself, “Did he just say he was a prophet?” So now you are listening a little closer. Then Jesus does the unthinkable. He compares everyone in the synagogue to the faithless Jews of Elijah and Elisha’s time and suggests it would be Gentiles instead who would enjoy the blessings of God because the Jews would reject their prophet (Luke 4:25-27). Well, that got their attention big time. They were angry. How dare Jesus suggest that people like those idol-worshipping Romans would experience God’s blessings! The Jews were God’s chosen people, not the Gentiles!
https://www.laurajdavis.com/biblestudie ... t-nazareth
Ms. Davis seems to be saying that the audience rejected Jesus because he was their prophet and messiah.

How could he be anything BUT a fraud if he falsely (in their mind at least) claimed to be their messiah / prophet?


AND Randall Niles Christian author:
This is profound. Jesus returns to the town where he grew up and starts a public ministry. One Saturday, he goes to the front of the synagogue – the Jewish house of worship where he spent many Saturdays as a kid -- and reads a famous Messianic passage from the Prophet Isaiah. He finishes the prophecy – one that Jewish people had read for nearly 700 years – by identifying himself as the one spoken of by Isaiah.

Jesus rejected in his hometown of Nazareth – The Result

Can you imagine? You’ve grown up with this guy. You were in woodshop together at school. He’s the son of Joseph and Mary -- just regular townspeople. After thirty-something years of appearing “normal,” Jesus goes off and gets baptized by John at the river, runs off to the mountains for 40 days, and comes back revealing himself as the long-awaited Messiah to his hometown congregation.

Needless to say, the people were a bit skeptical.
Then, Jesus calls them out and challenges their doubt. He points to past Hebrew generations that also doubted the scriptures and the prophets. Ultimately, the townspeople get angry and even try to kill Jesus by throwing him off a local hillside.

All the people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. They got up, drove him out of the town, and took him to the brow of the hill on which the town was built, in order to throw him off the cliff. But he walked right through the crowd and went on his way. (Luke 4:28-30)

In the end, Jesus is rejected in his hometown of Nazareth. He escapes the mob, but is run out of town.
https://drivethruhistory.com/jesus-reje ... -nazareth/
Mr. Niles says clearly that people of Nazarath were angry because Jesus 'revealed himself as the long-awaited messiah”. That was clearly (in their minds at least) a fraudulent claim – they would not likely have thrown a true messiah off a cliff.
Why do you turn to a 'Christian' ? I thought you were the one giving the Christians understanding of their book. Oh, I see. You really don't know what you are talking about when it comes to the Bible. So now you must turn to Christians for some understanding. Glad you cleared that up.

You say 'Ms. Davis seems to be saying'. That can mean anything. As for Niles, Jesus did reveal Himself as the Messiah. But that is not what made the people angry. What made them angry is as I said. Jesus said He did not come for their salvation or their cleansing. (Luke 4:25-27).

Go ahead and find another 'Christian' to help you. You need all the help you can get. You can't argue the Bible on your own, because you don't know it. Go back to Sunday School.

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Re: Why is Christianity declining in the US and other advanced / technological / educated nations?

Post #43

Post by otseng »

Quantrill wrote: Wed Jul 01, 2020 6:09 pm You really don't know what you are talking about when it comes to the Bible.

You need all the help you can get.

You can't argue the Bible on your own, because you don't know it. Go back to Sunday School.
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Re: Why is Christianity declining in the US and other advanced / technological / educated nations?

Post #44

Post by Zzyzx »

Jesus WAS a fraud unless he was actually the Jewish messiah. Jews did NOT / do NOT accept him as such. Non-Jews attempt(ed) to tell the Jews that Jesus was the Jewish messiah. Islam (the fastest growing religion in the world – another spin-off from Judaism) also regards Jesus a NOT the messiah.

He 'became the messiah' by being 'deified' as Icon for the new gentile (non-Jewish) religion after he was dead. Paul/Saul supposedly 'met' the deceased in a 'vision' (or hallucination, or delusion, or fantasy, or whatever it was) and gospel writers (whoever they were) told stories (written decades later) of 'miracles' and long-dead bodies coming back to life. There has been NO verifiable evidence presented to substantiate the tales of supernatural feats or 'miracles' attributed to Jesus.

Although those tales evidently appealed to gentiles far from Judea, people living in the area with an opportunity to actually experience Jesus were less impressed (including his own hometown) – and do not regard the tales as true or as proof that Jesus was anything more than a wandering Jewish preacher (perhaps with delusions of grandeur). Wannabe messiahs were evidently not uncommon in the era and were regularly dismissed as frauds by Jews.

This seems to upset those who choose to worship Jesus thousands of years later based on unverified tales told by Paul/Saul, gospel writers, and other religion promoters. They often become angry and hostile when their supernatural tales are disbelieved and challenged.

However, as indicated in this thread, Christianity is declining in areas other than Africa, South America, and parts of Asia. It is not surprising that some who have great emotional investment in the worship of Jesus become defensive rather than acknowledging that their religion is declining as society advances.

Perhaps younger generations can come to grips with the fact that Christians comprise less than a third of the wold population (in 2020) – and the fact that Islam is the world's fastest growing religion.

A high percentage of Christians are in Africa; and in just one more generation forty percent of the world's Christians are predicted to be in Africa. Christianity appears to have run its course and is declining in North America, Europe, Australia, and elsewhere. Becoming upset, defensive, and hostile will not affect the outcome – but will say something about you (generic term).


Let's get back to the OP. "WHY is Christianity declining in the US and other advanced / technological / educated nations?"
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Re: Why is Christianity declining in the US and other advanced / technological / educated nations?

Post #45

Post by Quantrill »

Just because the Jews as a nation reject Jesus Christ as their Messiah, does not make or prove Jesus was a fraud. Just because others believe Jesus was a fraud does not make or prove Jesus was a fraud.

The teaching of Christ and the miracles he performed which affected the people prove He was not a fraud. (Luke 4:14) (John 12:19) (John 6:13-15)

Christianity is declining because less people of God are being found among the Gentile nations as we come closer to the end time events. Just like with Noah before the flood. He was the last righteous man on earth. Just like with Israel at the time of Christ, they were in decline as the people of God as God was preparing for the Church age. The majority of believers would now come from the Gentiles.

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Re: Why is Christianity declining in the US and other advanced / technological / educated nations?

Post #46

Post by Zzyzx »

Quantrill wrote: Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:59 am Just because the Jews as a nation reject Jesus Christ as their Messiah, does not make or prove Jesus was a fraud. Just because others believe Jesus was a fraud does not make or prove Jesus was a fraud.
If Native Americans say 'He is not our chief. He is a fraud' and outsiders say 'Yes he is your chief and he is not a fraud'. Which group has the right to make that decision?
Quantrill wrote: Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:59 am The teaching of Christ and the miracles he performed which affected the people prove He was not a fraud. (Luke 4:14) (John 12:19) (John 6:13-15)
The 'miracles' are TALES told by promoters of the splinter group religion. There is no assurance the tales are true.
Quantrill wrote: Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:59 am Christianity is declining because less people of God are being found among the Gentile nations as we come closer to the end time events.
Believers have been fantasizing about 'end times' for thousands of years. Their 'end of the world' predictions have come to naught.
Quantrill wrote: Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:59 am Just like with Noah before the flood.
The flood tale is taken seriously by those who want to believe that a 500 year-old man built an 'Ark' larger than any wooden ship ever known to be constructed, gathered animals worldwide, kept them fed and cared for during a year aboard, repopulated the Earth with animals (including humans) in a few thousand years.
Quantrill wrote: Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:59 am He was the last righteous man on earth.
Quite a claim. Kindly provide verifiable evidence
Quantrill wrote: Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:59 am Just like with Israel at the time of Christ, they were in decline as the people of God as God was preparing for the Church age.
So goes the tale
Quantrill wrote: Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:59 am The majority of believers would now come from the Gentiles.
Evidently 'God' has a problem choosing worthy people. Now the self-righteous choose themselves.


Apologist 'arguments' distill to 'The Bible says so' and 'Take my word for it (or his or this book)'
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Re: Why is Christianity declining in the US and other advanced / technological / educated nations?

Post #47

Post by Quantrill »

No one in the Bible said Jesus was a fraud.

The testimony of the Bible is what some are using to call Jesus a fraud. Yet the testimony of the Bible proves differently. But when that testimony is presented, those who try and use it first against Christ , say it is just tales and untrue. Proves the hypocrisy of their arguments.

In other words, the atheists and agnostics like to posture themselves as knowing the Bible. And so they try and use the Bible agaisnt the Christian. But when it doesn't work because of their ignorance of the Bible, they cry foul. They say the Bible can't be believed. Yet they were trying to use it as proof against Christ.

Oxymoronic.

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Re: Why is Christianity declining in the US and other advanced / technological / educated nations?

Post #48

Post by Zzyzx »

.
[Replying to Quantrill in post #47]

There is a possibility that Jesus wasn't a fraud. He could have been nothing more than a wandering Jewish preacher who annoyed secular and/or sectarian leaders enough to get himself executed. If that be the case, fraud was perpetrated in his name by Paul/Saul and associates (promoters of the splinter group religion) who 'deified' him long after he was dead by preaching / writing that he had performed 'miracles' and was a part of the Jewish 'God'.

Those who claim to know that Jesus was actually the promised 'messiah' have the burden of proof to show that they speak truth and that he actually performed 'miracles', came back to life, and flew away as the biblical tales contend. Some of the greatest magic tricks ever performed (including 'resurrection') and no one other than promoters of the new religion seems to have noticed or mentioned – and the only 'evidence' offered is the tales themselves.

Again: Let's get back to the OP."WHY is Christianity declining in the US and other advanced / technological / educated nations?"

One suggestion to account for the decline is an obsessive focus on ancient tales and insufficient emphasis on real-life issues that affect people currently.
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Re: Why is Christianity declining in the US and other advanced / technological / educated nations?

Post #49

Post by Diagoras »

Quantrill wrote: Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:59 am Christianity is declining because less people of God are being found among the Gentile nations as we come closer to the end time events.
So there are fewer Christians because there are fewer true Christians...? Have I got that correct? If so, it doesn’t really offer much in the way of an explanation.

Also, the oft-quoted ‘end times’ never seems to be adequately quantified in any of these discussions. Perhaps it would be more productive to attempt some form of forecast, if this is truly the reason being suggested for a decline in numbers in the U.S and other Western countries. What minimum number of ‘people of God’ would signal that the end times were in fact upon us? And over how many years might we reasonably expect the reduction to occur?

It would be nice to see some empirical data to back up the claims.

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Re: Why is Christianity declining in the US and other advanced / technological / educated nations?

Post #50

Post by Quantrill »

Diagoras wrote: Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:40 am
So there are fewer Christians because there are fewer true Christians...? Have I got that correct? If so, it doesn’t really offer much in the way of an explanation.

Also, the oft-quoted ‘end times’ never seems to be adequately quantified in any of these discussions. Perhaps it would be more productive to attempt some form of forecast, if this is truly the reason being suggested for a decline in numbers in the U.S and other Western countries. What minimum number of ‘people of God’ would signal that the end times were in fact upon us? And over how many years might we reasonably expect the reduction to occur?

It would be nice to see some empirical data to back up the claims.
Well, I am a Christian and so my opinions and what I believe concerning Christianity, come from the Bible. When the decline of Christianity is being discussed, I refer to the Bible.

So, I didn't just say there are fewer Christians because there are fewer Christians. I gave a reason based on what I believe the Bible is teaching God is doing.

From just the human perspective, the Church is in decline because less people are turning to Jesus Christ. Less people are turning to Jesus Christ because Christians are not as faithful in the propagation of the Gospel. Christians are not as faithful because of the lack of spirituality in their faith. Christians are less spiritual because of the worldliness that is allowed in the Church. Worldiness is allowed in the Church because Christians are moving away from the Bible as that which dictates how a church is to function.

This is my view as a Christian.

Quantrill

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