- The Washington Times - Saturday, September 17, 2022

If recent religion trends continue, the population of self-professing Christians in America will fall below the 50% level by the year 2070, Pew Research Center predicted in a newly released report.

There goes America’s freedoms. There goes American Exceptionalism.

Why?



In summation: If America’s exceptionalism comes from the idea that individual rights come from God and government is only in place to protect those birth rights — and it does; that’s American Exceptionalism defined — then it’s common sense that the more secular America grows, the less reliant on God Americans become, and ultimately, the wider the door opens for Big Government to swoop in a serve as savior to humanity. You can’t have God-given without God.

So it’s both alarming and threatening to the fate of America’s freedoms to read the likes of this from Pew: “[P]rojections show Christians of all ages shrinking from 64% [in 2020] to between a little more than half (54%) and [ultimately] just above one-third (35%) of all Americans by 2070. Over that same period, ‘nones’ would rise from the current 30% to somewhere between 34% and 52% of the U.S. population.”

The “nones,” of course, are those who are religiously unaffiliated — the drifters; the willows in the wind; the ones whose minds and hearts and thoughts and principles and beliefs shift with the breezes and move with the modern times, always changing to reflect popular will. 

It’s important to note that Pew emphasized its findings were based on hypothetical scenarios, i.e., on other factors like migration, births and deaths continuing to accelerate, in line with their own respective trends. But hypotheticals to the side, fact is plenty of other surveys and reports and studies have found a downward shift of Christianity in America.

“U.S. Church Membership Falls Below Majority for First Time,” Gallup wrote in March of 2021.

The headline was a summary of Gallup’s polling that found “Americans’ membership in houses of worship continued to decline last year, dropping below 50% for the first time in Gallup’s eight-decade trend. In 2020, 47% of Americans said they belonged to a church, synagogue or mosque, down from 50% in 2018 and 70% in 1999.”

Fully 70% of American believers went to houses of worship in 1999. Now? Less than half. That’s a massive cultural shift.

Even more significantly — this, also from Gallup: “Belief in God in U.S. Dips to 81%, a New Low.”

That was June of 2022. And once again, it’s a new low for Gallup polling on this question.

Gallup first asked the question in 1944, again in 1947, and again in the 1950s and 1960s, and on those occasions, fully 98% said they believed in God. By 2011, that number dropped to 92%. Then, things really started going south.

“A subsequent survey in 2013,” Gallup wrote, “found belief in God dipping below 90% to 87%, roughly where it stood in three subsequent updates between 2014 and 2017 before this year’s [2022] drop to 81%.”

What’s going on?

Churches aren’t showing themselves to be relevant. Parents aren’t taking their children to church. Schools aren’t offering prayer times, or even moments of silence — and in some cases, outright attacking or showing hostility to students who want to bring God into the classrooms and lunchrooms. Modern society has grown coarser, more vulgar, more materialistic, numb to the devices of Satan — think of the normalization of the LGBTQ agenda, adultery and promiscuity, violence as entertainment. And more importantly: the family unit has been broken to the point where divorce, abortion, recreational sex, fatherless homes, and all the accompanying perils and pitfalls have permeated and penetrated as normal. Try talking abstinence and see what happens these days.

“Poll: America growing more secular by the year,” Religion News Service wrote in December 2021, citing a Pew survey that showed only 63% of Americans self-identified as Christians that year compared to 75% a decade earlier.

And from the American religious Identification Survey, ARIS, more of the same, from even earlier years.

“[T]he number of ‘Nonreligious’ American adults more than doubled between 1990 and 2001 while the number of ‘Religious’ and ‘Christians’ declined,” the Freedom From Religious Foundation wrote. “The ‘Nonreligious’ are now the fastest growing segment of the population.”

So long, American Exceptionalism.

The more society turns away from Judeo-Christian principles and biblical truths, the more humankind relies on minds and self-will to determine rights from wrongs, moral versus immoral, virtuous rather than sinful. Without absolutes — without structure and behavioral standards and rules and laws that are fixed and unchanging — it’s only a matter of time before chaos results. America’s democratic-republic was only meant for a moral people; American freedoms can only last so long as the people are constrained by belief in a never-changing Creator.

The freest society is one where citizens don’t need government to enforce order.

Guess where America now stands on the spectrum of individual liberties?

The key to keeping our country free is a great awakening of our Christian base.

Without, individual liberties are only as lasting as the next election — the next cultural trend — the next whack-a-mole fight. As belief in God goes, so goes Americans’ freedoms.

• Cheryl Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com or on Twitter, @ckchumley. Listen to her podcast “Bold and Blunt” by clicking HERE. And never miss her column; subscribe to her newsletter and podcast by clicking HERE. Her latest book, “Lockdown: The Socialist Plan To Take Away Your Freedom,” is available by clicking HERE  or clicking HERE or CLICKING HERE.

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