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Reports of Christianity's Demise Greatly (and gleefully) Exaggerated
Nietzsche is Dead ^ | 10 May 09 | foutsc

Posted on 05/10/2009 6:46:41 AM PDT by foutsc

Is Christianity Dying in America? Only, perhaps, at the hands of political entanglement.

Jon Meacham, following Newsweek's tabloid trash journalistic standards, has completely botched an article on Christianity in America. He slants his report on the latest American Religious Indentification Survey to make is seem as if Christianity is dead in America. He was obviously in over his head, so I won't spend too much time on his pathetic effort. I'll only point out the grossest stupidities.

Atheism isn't Overtaking Christianity

The survey report concludes that self-identification confusion among deists, atheists, and agnostics clouds the true numbers, but that perhaps one percent of the population is atheist. That's hardly a groundswell of God-rejection, but it doesn't stop Meacham's gleeful dance upon Christianity's grave.

Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics

Christianity declined 10% in the 1990's, but has declined less than one percent in the past eight years. To make the case more alarming, he focuses on the steep decline of the 90's and ignores the leveling off of the new millennium

God Does Not Hate Worship of Him

Most egregious is his ripping an Old Testament passage completely out of context in order to slam organized religious ceremonies:

As an archbishop of Canterbury once said, though, it is a mistake to think that God is chiefly or even largely concerned with religion. "I hate the sound of your solemn assemblies," the Lord says in Amos.
The Lord said that because he was greatly unhappy with the Israelites' actions at that point in history. Even a cursory reading of Amos makes that clear. Further reading would instruct this ignorant man that God requires us to assemble and worship him. How lazy.

"Give to Caesar what is Caesar's and to God what is God's"

E.J. Dionne has a much firmer grasp on the situation. He eschews the hysterics and takes the longer view, which is more appropriate when evaluating a 2000 year old religion's place is a society that is less that 500 years old:

In fact, the United States has gone through many periods in which religious enthusiasm and affiliation waned, only to be renewed in a subsequent revival. Christianity is a rather durable faith. Many believers would ascribe this to the power of its truth claims, but its resilience also speaks to the adaptability of its core message.
EJ, a devout Christian, throws some jabs at the religious right, but they are thoughtful and not mean-spirited, which is why he is one of my favorite liberals:

But, yes, something is changing, and that change will strengthen rather than weaken the Christian church over the long run. For nearly a quarter-century, Christianity in the United States has been defined to a large degree by the voices and the ideas of a very conservative strain of evangelical Christianity that, over time, became highly politicized and closely allied with a single political party.

These conservative Christians had as much right as any other group to bring their core concerns to politics. But in doing so, they narrowed the Christian message. They sometimes became apologists for politicians whose behavior and attitudes could not easily be called Christian and forgot that Christ himself became a victim of injustice at the hands of a mighty empire.

Christianity got too cozy with the GOP

I agree with E.J., but to be fair to Christians and the GOP, the Democratic party's agenda of pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage, anti-prayer, and state usurpation of parental roles ran off the socially conservative Christians. Despite liberal hostility to Christian morality, any good church should avoid entanglements with government and politic parties.

Such entanglements are responsible for Christianity's demise in Europe. The Catholic Church became joined at the hip with the crowned heads, and when royalty became discredited, so did the church. Government sponsorship of certain approved Protestant religions in Western Europe has destroyed those churches.

Christianity is thriving in America like it is in few other western countries. Assiduously preventing political parties from slapping their bumper stickers on it will go a long way towards maintaining that progress. Preventing stupid reporters from mischaracterizing Christianity is the greater challenge: Reckless reporting is protected by the First Amendment

Mark 12, NIV, Bible

American Religious Identification Survey

TOPICS: Current Events; Religion & Culture; Religion & Politics
KEYWORDS: america; christendom; christianity; christiannation; faith; judeochristian; newsweek; survey

1 posted on 05/10/2009 6:46:42 AM PDT by foutsc
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To: foutsc

Not all christians are christians..

2 posted on 05/10/2009 6:51:00 AM PDT by hosepipe (This propaganda has been edited to include some fully orbed hyperbole....)
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To: hosepipe

TOO true....

3 posted on 05/10/2009 7:07:30 AM PDT by MrLee (Sha'alu Shalom Yerushalyim!! God bless Eretz Israel.)
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To: MrLee

I don;t think Christianity is dying in America. In fact I think it’s just the opposite. The fact is that a majority of Christians are the so-called SILENT MAJORITY. But as we have seen of late that SILENT MAJORITY is no longer choosing to remain SILENT. This is a crucial change in past Christian behavior and that change is to applauded even encouraged! It’s well past time for Christians all across America to stand up and be counted and to boycott those who wouldridicule and malign them, namely the MSM, the drive by media and Hollywood.

4 posted on 05/10/2009 7:16:51 AM PDT by Ev Reeman
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To: Ev Reeman

Agree- to a point. When I look at former bastions of Christianity like England and Europe, I begin to wonder.

5 posted on 05/10/2009 7:19:25 AM PDT by MrLee (Sha'alu Shalom Yerushalyim!! God bless Eretz Israel.)
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To: foutsc

"The survey report concludes that self-identification confusion among deists, atheists, and agnostics clouds the true numbers, but that perhaps one percent of the population is atheist."

How do they count people who are not sure what they believe?
Most liberals are confused even about the basic teachings of Christianity.

6 posted on 05/10/2009 7:25:14 AM PDT by HowlinglyMind-BendingAbsurdity
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