“The State of the Bible in America by Justin Guin”

Each year the American Bible Society releases a report on the “State of the Bible” in America. This study polls Americans from across the country and asks questions about their view of the Scriptures. Here are some trends from this year’s report. 

  • 9% of Americans read their Bible on a daily basis. From 2011-2019, this number was steady around 13%. A four percent drop in one year is unprecedented.

  • 3% of Americans read their Bible four or more times per week. 10% said several times per week. 9% said either once per week or once per month. 8% said three to four times per year. While 34% answered they never read their Bibles. 

  • When asked the question, “The Bible contains everything a person needs to know to live a meaningful life” the respondents answered- 

    • 37% strongly agreed

    • 31% agreed somewhat

    • 32% disagreed with that statement. 

What does this study show us about the state of Christianity in America? First, it reveals our biblical ignorance when we have the greatest access to God’s word in human history. Second, it helps us see the shift of values in our country. Of course, things have been trending in this direction for quite some time. There is little doubt we live in a post-Christian culture.

It is not all negative, though. The church has great potential to teach people God’s truth. During the first century, the church thrived in a world that was biblically ignorant. This presents some challenges for us. First, we must be well informed of God’s word (2 Tim. 2:15). This means learning to mature and train our "powers of discernment" (Heb. 5:11-14).  Second, our lives must become the living embodiment of biblical truth. In other words, the world needs to see genuine, New Testament Christianity. No matter the cultural trends, God’s mission for the church remains the same. To be God's people, we must submit to his word.