Fewer in U.S. Call Themselves Christian, Study Says

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    Mar 09, 2009 4:06 PM GMT
    "The percentage of Americans who call themselves Christians has dropped dramatically over the past two decades, and those who do are increasingly identifying themselves without traditional denomination labels, according to a major study of U.S. religion being released today. ... "

    "The survey substantiated several general trends already identified by sociologists: the slipping importance of denomination in America, the growing number of people who say they have "no" religion and the increase in religious minorities including Muslims, Mormons and such movements as Wicca and paganism."

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/03/08/AR2009030801967.html?hpid=moreheadlines

    Well, this is a good sign. The fewer christians the better!

    I would say those that call themselves "nondnominational" are just christian by habit and havent made that last step to say "fuck it."

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    Mar 09, 2009 4:39 PM GMT
    Man I have been having a real struggle with my so called "Christianity". I have always believed in a God, and I do not doubt or discount that God exist. To me it's the only reason all of this random chaos we call life can exist in perfect harmony. I mean just look at the human body alone and how all of these cells and molecules come together to form a sentient being. Yeah there's a God, no doubt.
    I just don't know if this "God" is the way that man in-visions. I mean does he really love listening to "Holy, Holy, Holy" every Sunday??? I have been praying and asking Jesus to send the Holy Spirit to cleanse my heart and replenish my faith and what have you but I haven't really seen a sign or heard and answer. Christians keep telling me, "oh you're just not listening" or "God answers prayers in his own time" and I keep thinking, what if we're wrong.
    I'm caught between the fear of fire and brimstone and eternal damnation and the thought of waisting my time here on earth praising something that's just another type of system created by man to control the masses. I mean lets face it all we have is time right??? icon_confused.gif
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    Mar 09, 2009 4:45 PM GMT
    I believe in God, he has my soul. What I don't believe in is (most) the structured church and religions that try to control you through scripture. The bible (which I have read) is a book. A book written by man. In my belief filled with what these religions want you to read and believe in. They change it to thier liking at the time.

    I think most people are tired of the church trying to tell them how to live thier lifes. That love (as in homosexuality) is a sin. They still love their partner, son, daughter even if their church is wrong. These churches continue to point out how wrong people are, when in their hearts they know it's not wrong.

    My Church is any place I decide to pray. my belief is in a loving God that does not hate any one, nor think loving someone is a sin.
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    Mar 09, 2009 4:48 PM GMT
    Think about all the people you love. Could you condemn any of them to eternal punishment for any reason? If a god exists that created all things, who loves all his human creations, then how does eternal damnation fit into the picture? Try every day to be kinder than the day before, sacrifice for others. Even if there's no eternal reward, that kind of living will be far more pleasant than other ways of living.

    I think the catholic church lost of lot of it's viewership when they put that Star Wars villain in the role of pope.
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    Mar 09, 2009 4:48 PM GMT
    "Well, this is a good sign. The fewer christians the better!

    I would say those that call themselves "nondnominational" are just christian by habit and havent made that last step to say "fuck it.""

    here here!
    rotten lot of good christianity's done in its 2000 years of abuse.

    im glad people are starting to focus on the commonalities, rather than the differences, and are allowing mystery to be, by acknowledging how little they know, rather than insisting on how much.
  • oxdr

    Posts: 92

    Mar 09, 2009 4:50 PM GMT
    I was raised Lutheran. My grandma states that I am no longer her grandson because I am gay. What I say is that what religion did Jesus say he was? Why did God give us freedon of choice (free will).

    Important though. The Bible also says, "Thou shalt not past judgment in my place or my rath will bestow upon you."

    Makes sense, that is what we did to Jesus. We set a killer free before Jesus. I believe in Nondemonitaional to be the whay. Man names and labels, not God.
  • GQjock

    Posts: 11649

    Mar 09, 2009 4:56 PM GMT
    I think that we are finally waking from a long Jehovah induced coma
    That has sapped our humanity for WAY too long
    When you look just during the recent years where the Church's (et al)
    stance has been on things like Evolution
    Stem cell research
    Birth Control not EVEN the right to choose
    Sex education
    Civil Rights ... mainly gay rights
    and a whole host of others
    any sane human being should turn to themselves and say What the Hell Man icon_confused.gif
    We are slowly moving to where the Northern Europeans have been for years
    They have been able to shake themselves from the Yoke of religion
    It's about time we did
  • Sebastian18

    Posts: 255

    Mar 09, 2009 5:02 PM GMT
    That's an interesting study. Coming from the least-churched state in the union (Washington), it's kind of interesting to see how the trend is working out in other parts of the United States.

    On another note, I personally find the generalized Christian bashing on here a little absurd. Now, I am neither Christian nor do I believe in their soterology and plan of salvifics (and the variations which occur based on denomination), but if one is going to be anti-x y or z it would behoove them to try to be somewhat specific on what aspect they're attacking.

    For example, instead of saying "Christians are nut jobs who want all gays to burn in hell" is a really general statement. Reality of it is, only a few churches in the US are really anti-gay to that level and would classify as radically fundamentalist churches and it would be useful to mention those qualifiers.

    The majority of Christian churches in the US are pretty mainline and a growing number of them are more and more supportive of LGBTQ rights and issues. As a whole, I think X-tianity is a very beautiful expression of spirituality but just not for some people - such as myself.
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    Mar 09, 2009 5:08 PM GMT
    The least religious state in the US is Vermont. Maybe that is why we will soon have gay marriage legal here.
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    Mar 09, 2009 5:25 PM GMT
    Caslon9000 said"The percentage of Americans who call themselves Christians has dropped dramatically over the past two decades, and those who do are increasingly identifying themselves without traditional denomination labels, according to a major study of U.S. religion being released today. ... "

    "The survey substantiated several general trends already identified by sociologists: the slipping importance of denomination in America, the growing number of people who say they have "no" religion and the increase in religious minorities including Muslims, Mormons and such movements as Wicca and paganism."

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/03/08/AR2009030801967.html?hpid=moreheadlines

    Well, this is a good sign. The fewer christians the better!

    I would say those that call themselves "nondnominational" are just christian by habit and havent made that last step to say "fuck it."



    The fewer Christians the better? Thats like the Christians saying the fewer gays the better. Can gay people not be tolerant of Christians just as we expect from them?
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    Mar 09, 2009 5:31 PM GMT
    "The fewer Christians the better? Thats like the Christians saying the fewer gays the better. Can gay people not be tolerant of Christians just as we expect from them?"

    no, its like saying the fewer nazis the better. the fewer KKK the better. the fewer slave traders the better....

    we dislike organized christianity because it preaches that we sin by existing, and will burn in hell forever- that some people are better than others, and that some deserve the love of god and man, whilst others are damned from the start. they dislike us.... why? does hate ever have a real reason?

    we are not hating on the religion in its idealized form, any more so than one can 'hate' communism on paper- they were simply failed experiments. the blame is not on the religions or utopian plans, the fault is with the petty and flawed people who used those systems to their own corrupt ends, and made the world a little worse for wear. big ideas are powerful tools, and they always fall into the wrong hands in the end.

    the fact of the matter is, whether we kill em with kindness, or with righteous indignation, they are a dying breed on their own. we just have to wait for the past few generations to die out, and the world will be a freer place. you can see it for yourself on any college campus.

    there will be those among us who call for us to turn the other cheek, and those who more honestly speak their minds openly about the hurts the church has caused, but either way, their downfall is already in progress.
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    Mar 09, 2009 5:34 PM GMT
    Stolenname said I mean just look at the human body alone and how all of these cells and molecules come together to form a sentient being.

    Dude, complex organisms like human beings didnt just spring up fully formed. Things started simple and slowly became complex.

    The very beginning of a "cell" ...its wall dividing inside from outside...occurs naturally without a living cell even existing yet.

    Organic molecules called aliphatic hydrocarbons will naturally form a ball in an aqueous solution. As the ball grows, it will eventually become to large to sustain its single molecule thick "membrane." When it ruptures, it will naturally fold in upon itself and form a two-molecule thick membrane.....sound familiar.....the double thickness of a cell's membrane. ....you have the beginnings of a cell.....just give it time.

    And one "cell" will grow, rupture, and form two "cells"....eventually, this process becomes, not a factor of size and natural electrostatic forces between aliphatic hydrocarbon molecules, but a determined, controlled process....voila! ... Life!

    Your amazement at the complexity of multicellular life is just cuz you are ignorant....and therefore, imagine there must be a god causing this.
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    Mar 09, 2009 5:38 PM GMT
    jbhno3 saidThe fewer Christians the better? Thats like the Christians saying the fewer gays the better. Can gay people not be tolerant of Christians just as we expect from them?

    Gays arent trying to denying christians the right to participate in society. You dont have to tolerate someone who is attacking you.

    Since christians are hell-bent (pun intended) on suppressing gays, it is ok to oppose christians, their churches, and wish for less of them.
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    Mar 09, 2009 5:41 PM GMT
    cas, i mostly agree, but if you take it a step further, knowing the 'hows' alleviates one of much of the mystery..... only until one dares to ask 'why.'

    that mystery is still untouched. knowing how things work is a magical thing man is capable of, and that's why its always been said that we're holy by nature, but until we know they whys, there is room for mystery and for god.

    though i personally don't subscribe to a paternal santa claus god in the clouds with a naughty and nice list. or any conceptualization of It, really- if you can imagine It, you're only grasping a small piece of It.
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    Mar 09, 2009 5:42 PM GMT
    czarodziej saidcas, i mostly agree, but if you take it a step further, knowing the 'hows' alleviates one of much of the mystery..... only until one dares to ask 'why.'

    that mystery is still untouched. knowing how things work is a magical thing man is capable of, and that's why its always been said that we're holy by nature, but until we know they whys, there is room for mystery and for god.

    though i personally don't subscribe to a paternal santa claus god in the clouds with a naughty and nice list. or any conceptualization of It, really- if you can imagine It, you're only grasping a small piece of It.

    Which whys are you speaking of?
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    Mar 09, 2009 5:45 PM GMT
    Christian? What about all the other boy's names?

    Oh my God, I am on fire.
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    Mar 12, 2009 5:17 PM GMT
    Your amazement at the complexity of multicellular life is just cuz you are ignorant....and therefore, imagine there must be a god causing this.[/quote]

    Well, dude, I wasn't saying that we all started out as fully grown organisms I was just stating the fact that it's impressive and it fascinates me how all of this chaos exist in perfect harmony. For instance, you say that I'm ignorant because I made a simple comment about the basic construction of every living and non-living mass in existence by using basic the scientific formula to create a cell. Props to you for learning to read. But that still doesn't answer the question of where the molecules first came from (which I'm sure you probably believe in the "Big Bang"). The question is as simple as, which came first the chicken or the egg?
    Don't get me wrong I don't discount the big bang theory either, once again no man truly understands the basic fundamental questions such as "what are we?" and "why are we here" which makes each man equal in our own ignorance as a species. My point was merely that it's pretty hard for me personally to believe that life just happens to be, and all of this was of random happenstance where all of the sudden all of these billions items floating around in space just came together in perfect harmony (for no reason) and ta-da then there was life, without some greater force guiding it, that's all. Whether you feel the same way or not I could care less thats your personal understanding of how life works. That doesn't make me ignorant rather than an inquisitive young lad who enjoys pondering on the mysteries of life. Why be so insulting to someone who places their faith in something greater than themselves??
    I know this was a late response but I have been on vacation.
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    Mar 12, 2009 5:21 PM GMT
    Stolenname saidYour amazement at the complexity of multicellular life is just cuz you are ignorant....and therefore, imagine there must be a god causing this.


    Well, dude, I wasn't saying that we all started out as fully grown organisms I was just stating the fact that it's impressive and it fascinates me how all of this chaos exist in perfect harmony. For instance, you say that I'm ignorant because I made a simple comment about the basic construction of every living and non-living mass in existence by using basic the scientific formula to create a cell. Props to you for learning to read. But that still doesn't answer the question of where the molecules first came from (which I'm sure you probably believe in the "Big Bang"). The question is as simple as, which came first the chicken or the egg?
    Don't get me wrong I don't discount the big bang theory either, once again no man truly understands the basic fundamental questions such as "what are we?" and "why are we here" which makes each man equal in our own ignorance as a species. My point was merely that it's pretty hard for me personally to believe that life just happens to be, and all of this was of random happenstance where all of the sudden all of these billions items floating around in space just came together in perfect harmony (for no reason) and ta-da then there was life, without some greater force guiding it, that's all. Whether you feel the same way or not I could care less thats your personal understanding of how life works. That doesn't make me ignorant rather than an inquisitive young lad who enjoys pondering on the mysteries of life. Why be so insulting to someone who places their faith in something greater than themselves??
    I know this was a late response but I have been on vacation. [/quote]
    yes, there may be a point at which we wont know exactly what caused it. but for me that doesnt mean their an anthropomorphic god in heaven. I find that most christians are just totally ignorant of science and therefore cant imagine anything other than a heavenly magician creating everything. One cant even hold a conversation with them they are so ignorant. ...But then you cant talk to them about the bible either cuz they are ignorant of it too!
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    Mar 13, 2009 12:25 AM GMT
    Christianity seems to be quite a popular topic here on the RJ forum network.
    But the issue always seem to be the same: All Christians hate Gays and are condemning them to everlasting Hellfire...
    I am a Christian, in fact I could be called a fundie - a fundamentalist is one who accepts the Bible as the Word of God and trusted in Jesus Christ to save him, and attends a church of his choice.
    But as a fundie, if you wish to call me that, I do not, and I have never "condemned Gays to Hell". Why not? Because that attitude is NOT being Christian. Yes, I agree with many of you that there are, and has been, people who call themselves Christian and spout all kinds of condemning words to gays, etc. But the New Testament churches were instructed not to do so, often with the words, "Don't judge, lest you be judged" eg Romans 2:1-2.
    I think much of this blame is from the merging of Church with State, a disaster which occurred in AD 313 when Roman Emperor Constantine had a vision of a crucifix in the sky with the equivalent words to "Go out there and conquer (for Christ)." Constantine was the Pontimus Maximus, or first Bishop of Rome (which was the origin of the papacy - which did not arise with the apostle Peter) but the fact that he then murdered his wife and sons shows the imperfection of his conversion.
    Since then, basically, being a Christian and a good, patriotic citizen were seen as one and the same. Thus I read about Christians in America wanting, and campaigning to take over the media, radio, television, schools, Government departments, etc "for Christ", including punishment for gays, banning or forbidding gay marriages, excluding gays or throwing them out of churches. All that is wrong and totally unbiblical.
    There was a time when an English patriotic Christian wanted me thrown out of my church "for having gay inclinations" and "a traitor to the Country", while another Christian was talking seriously to a mate about running me over with his car he was driving while I was in a vulnerable spot while cycling.
    "Don't do it!" the mate retorted, "Or it's the nick!" My crime? Not supporting England in the World Cup. How pathetic.
    My message is not, gays will go to hell, etc because EVERYONE who is born is born with a sinful nature - Straights, Gays, Jews, Gentiles, Black, White, Indian, Oriental, Rich, Poor, Educated, Ignorant, King, Slave...
    so the message is the same to us all - Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and be saved.
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    Mar 13, 2009 1:14 AM GMT
    Caslon9000 said"The percentage of Americans who call themselves Christians has dropped dramatically over the past two decades, and those who do are increasingly identifying themselves without traditional denomination labels, according to a major study of U.S. religion being released today. ... "

    "The survey substantiated several general trends already identified by sociologists: the slipping importance of denomination in America, the growing number of people who say they have "no" religion and the increase in religious minorities including Muslims, Mormons and such movements as Wicca and paganism."

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/03/08/AR2009030801967.html?hpid=moreheadlines

    Well, this is a good sign. The fewer christians the better!

    I would say those that call themselves "nondnominational" are just christian by habit and havent made that last step to say "fuck it."



    The saying goes, and I think it holds true with false belief systems, as much as anything in life: You can fool some of the folks all the time; all the folks some of the time, but, not all the folks all the time.

    As folks become more educated, they're quicker to see the false belief systems for what they are: malarkey.

    Another saying: fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. People are just growing wiser.