Poll of US Evangelicals: 43% say Jesus was not God, 94% say extramarital sex is a sin, and more
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  Poll of US Evangelicals: 43% say Jesus was not God, 94% say extramarital sex is a sin, and more
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Author Topic: Poll of US Evangelicals: 43% say Jesus was not God, 94% say extramarital sex is a sin, and more  (Read 848 times)
CELTICEMPIRE
Junior Chimp
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« Reply #25 on: September 19, 2022, 09:46:53 PM »

A huge portion of self-identified Evangelicals don't even attend church.  The term has grown from its original meaning to anyone who believes in some idea of Jesus and is socially conservative.
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Associate Justice PiT
PiT (The Physicist)
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« Reply #26 on: September 19, 2022, 10:03:50 PM »

A huge portion of self-identified Evangelicals don't even attend church.  The term has grown from its original meaning to anyone who believes in some idea of Jesus and is socially conservative.

     This is key. It's inevitable that in a society a lot more people will claim to believe than actually take it seriously. Holding a coherent triadology is surprisingly difficult, and I don't expect someone who identifies as Christian for cultural reasons but seldom goes to church to do so. This same criticism can be levied at cafeteria Catholics, but you won't see that happen on the forum because they are overall a relatively liberal demographic.
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ExtremeRepublican
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« Reply #27 on: September 19, 2022, 10:54:41 PM »

A huge portion of self-identified Evangelicals don't even attend church.  The term has grown from its original meaning to anyone who believes in some idea of Jesus and is socially conservative.

     This is key. It's inevitable that in a society a lot more people will claim to believe than actually take it seriously. Holding a coherent triadology is surprisingly difficult, and I don't expect someone who identifies as Christian for cultural reasons but seldom goes to church to do so. This same criticism can be levied at cafeteria Catholics, but you won't see that happen on the forum because they are overall a relatively liberal demographic.

There was a similar divide in the 2016 primaries, with evangelicals who regularly attend church preferring Cruz and Rubio, while those who self-identified as evangelical but attended church less often backed Trump.

It's unfortunate that there's a lot of theological illiteracy, and it's a big problem in the church today.  I will say that the question about Original Sin and the inherent sinfulness of man was worded oddly, but that does nothing to excuse the one about the Trinity.  The Church needs to do better!

As for premarital sex, it's actually pretty common to wait for marriage in my experience among a subset of church-going evangelicals.  It's a widely held belief among my friends.
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Tortilla Soup
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« Reply #28 on: September 19, 2022, 11:47:32 PM »
« Edited: September 19, 2022, 11:51:48 PM by Tortilla Soup »

A huge portion of self-identified Evangelicals don't even attend church.  The term has grown from its original meaning to anyone who believes in some idea of Jesus and is socially conservative.

Modern evangelism has morphed into a political movement and is so far removed from the values espoused by past evangelical movements. Such movements go back to the protestant reformation and are about reading the Bible yourself, without the interference of human-created institutions that are corrupted by sin. What many "evangelicals" today don't seem to understand is that by combining political and religious authority, we easily lose sight of the important values in scripture and forget wether our primary allegiance is to God or to politicians and political ideologies. It's a tale as old as Christianity itself.
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LabourJersey
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« Reply #29 on: September 20, 2022, 06:49:54 PM »

Having actually read the article, I feel it's worth saying: the statements read to the people polled are pretty badly written, and I can totally see people not understanding them and saying the "heretical" view by mistake.

Like one question is asking whether God "learns" or not; and then maintains that since God is immutable, then God cannot learn. Is that really true? Even if it is, people would not interpret learning as being a genuine change.

And also the trinity is such a, quite honestly, weird tenet of a faith (and I say this as a Christian--I find this way harder to believe in than even the Resurrection) that I honestly don't put a whole lot of stock in polling questions about this.

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nicholas.slaydon
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« Reply #30 on: September 21, 2022, 12:43:59 PM »

I am quite surprised at the 94% number. Perhaps it is my own prejudices that lead me to think that American Christians do not actually take fornication seriously, but my recollection is that survey data would conclude that the proportion of Americans who actually practice celibacy before marriage is minuscule. I guess believing that an activity is sinful does not preclude participation.

How many of them think extramarital sex is a sin but wouldn't want a loved one who cheated on his wife to burn in hell?

This is a nonsense argument, as you seem to know. Having committed a sin does not imply damnation, least of all in Reformed soteriology where faith in God is the only condition for salvation.

Wait a second, isn't divine election the only precondition to salvation in Calvinist soteriology? Doesn't the U in TULIP stand for Unconditional Election? If faith is a precondition to salvation in Reformed soteriology than how can it be unconditional?
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Statilius the Epicurean
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« Reply #31 on: September 21, 2022, 02:15:53 PM »
« Edited: September 21, 2022, 02:32:07 PM by Statilius the Epicurean »

Oh I didn't see this thread in R&P before.

Like one question is asking whether God "learns" or not; and then maintains that since God is immutable, then God cannot learn. Is that really true? Even if it is, people would not interpret learning as being a genuine change.

The definition of learning is one acquiring knowledge one didn't have before. So yes, learning implies change. And if one believes God is omniscient (all-knowing), then God learning anything is impossible. What with the traditional Christian belief that God exists outside of time and so knows everything that has ever happened or will happen. So yes, in Christianity it's a heretical belief to say God learns.

But at any rate this poll should hardly be surprising, when understanding of orthopraxy has always dominated over orthodoxy in religious societies throughout history. (you see this very clearly in the accounts of the beliefs of Medieval peasants etc.) Sexual taboos are just more comprehensible and relevant to the lives of ordinary people than abstruse theological debates like the Trinity.

In the span of world religion it's an extreme peculiarity of (certain strands of) Christianity that correct belief defines oneself more than correct practice anyway - such thinking would be totally alien to Islam, Buddhism etc. and arguably Orthodox and Catholic forms of Christianity, the latter of which has always held to lex orandi, lex credendi.
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Stranger in a strange land
strangeland
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« Reply #32 on: September 21, 2022, 02:18:07 PM »
« Edited: September 24, 2022, 12:15:14 PM by Stranger in a strange land »

Having actually read the article, I feel it's worth saying: the statements read to the people polled are pretty badly written, and I can totally see people not understanding them and saying the "heretical" view by mistake.

Like one question is asking whether God "learns" or not; and then maintains that since God is immutable, then God cannot learn. Is that really true? Even if it is, people would not interpret learning as being a genuine change.

And also the trinity is such a, quite honestly, weird tenet of a faith (and I say this as a Christian--I find this way harder to believe in than even the Resurrection) that I honestly don't put a whole lot of stock in polling questions about this.



Fair enough, but people should absolutely understand the one about how "Jesus was a great teacher, but he was not God." Interestingly, this description exactly matches the Muslim view of Jesus, not the Christian one[1], and since basically the Council of Nicea, belief in the Divinity of Jesus has been one of the key tenants of Christianity, and is one of the few things that Protestant, Catholic, and Orthodox Churches all agree on.

[1] in fact the wording is so spot-on I almost wonder if the poll was sponsored by a Muslim group looking for strategies for prostleyizing to Christians.
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Ferguson97
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« Reply #33 on: September 29, 2022, 02:43:15 AM »

And perhaps controversially, I’d argue that those who formerly identified as Christian but now identify as “none” never actually believed in God in the first place and they feel more comfortable saying that out loud in todays society.

I'm sure that describes some people, but as one of those people I can assure you that it's not a universal truth. I used to genuinely believe in God.
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Lincoln Speaker Dwarven Dragon
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« Reply #34 on: September 29, 2022, 11:55:01 PM »

I am quite surprised at the 94% number. Perhaps it is my own prejudices that lead me to think that American Christians do not actually take fornication seriously, but my recollection is that survey data would conclude that the proportion of Americans who actually practice celibacy before marriage is minuscule. I guess believing that an activity is sinful does not preclude participation.

How many of them think extramarital sex is a sin but wouldn't want a loved one who cheated on his wife to burn in hell?

This is a nonsense argument, as you seem to know. Having committed a sin does not imply damnation, least of all in Reformed soteriology where faith in God is the only condition for salvation.

Wait a second, isn't divine election the only precondition to salvation in Calvinist soteriology? Doesn't the U in TULIP stand for Unconditional Election? If faith is a precondition to salvation in Reformed soteriology than how can it be unconditional?

Well the I stands for Irresistible Grace, meaning that every person God Saves is in fact a follower of him. But of course, the belief rests on God knowing the elect will come to have faith in him, so to call it a condition one must meet is not exactly authentic to the belief.

But I think the post above yours is mixing terms up. Irrevocable salvation by faith alone would be a form of Arminianism.

--


Not surprised. Evangelical is a political movement primarily, and when it is religious it seems to rely heavily on abortion, sexual purity, and YEC over other doctrines. Of course, as is pretty known around here, I agree with the first two, but enthusiastically disagree with the latter. This all plays into why I don't identify with the movement and no longer attend an evangelical church.

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Person Man
Angry_Weasel
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« Reply #35 on: September 30, 2022, 12:53:29 PM »

A huge portion of self-identified Evangelicals don't even attend church.  The term has grown from its original meaning to anyone who believes in some idea of Jesus and is socially conservative.

Or basically anyone who is generally socially conservative, virtually always on abortion, and does not identify as part of a non-Evangelical theology.
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