From ancient byways to modern highways, glimpses of faith are everywhere...

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Nominals: What's in a name?

LifeWay Headquarters   (Photo by Ed!)
More and more people these days are calling themselves "Jews" without believing in God, and calling themselves
Christians without believing in Jesus.

Cathy Lynn Grossman of RNS refers to folks who identify with a religion, but not its key doctrines, as "Nominals."  In other words, they "may live it [their self-proclaimed religion] in name only."

For example, a recent Pew survey showed that 62 percent of Jewish Americans "said Jewishness is largely about culture or ancestry," and only 15 percent said that it is about "religious belief."   Thirty-four percent  responded that "it's OK to see Jesus as the Messiah and still call themselves Jewish."

A 2008 study called Sacraments Today found that 77 percent of Catholics are proud to be so, but only 55 percent "say they are practicing their faith."  Only 61 percent "see the sacraments as essential," and only 43 percent "look to the pope and bishops when they make moral choices."

Protestants are also often what Thom Rainer of LifeWay Christian Resources calls "mushy Christians."  A LifeWay study of 1200 adults below the age of 30 revealed the following:  almost three-quarters called themselves "more spiritual than religious," more than one-quarter said that "God is just a concept," and only half stated that belief in Jesus Christ "is the only way to get to heaven."   


Copyright October 3, 2013 by Linda Van Slyke   All Rights Reserved

No comments:

Post a Comment