Although a large majority of pastors believe that God did not use evolution to create humans and think Adam and Eve were literal people, more teaching by Christian leaders on their beliefs about creation would help clear the air, said the president of LifeWay Research in reaction to his organization’s recent poll.
LifeWay’s Ed Stetzer said that the poll of 1,000 American Protestant pastors also found that ministers are almost evenly split on whether the earth is thousands or millions of years old and suggests that there is ongoing debate over the creation account in Genesis.
When asked to respond to the statement, "I believe God used evolution to create people," 73 percent of pastors said they disagree, with 64 percent strongly disagreeing and 8 percent somewhat disagreeing. Twelve percent each somewhat agree and strongly agree. Four percent are not sure. more >>
Half of the Americans who do not attend church also do not wonder if there is an ultimate purpose for their lives or the possibility that God has a plan for them, according to a recent survey.
The study by LifeWay Research, which surveyed 2,000 U.S. adults, also found that people with even a slight curiosity about a higher purpose to life are more likely to participate in worship services.
About 75 percent of the adults surveyed indicated that they either agree or strongly agree with the statement, “There is an ultimate purpose and plan for every person’s life.” more >>
Hoping to provide useful data to help settle the Southern Baptist Convention’s dilemma on whether to change the Christian denomination’s name, a research group released a study Wednesday on how Americans view the SBC along with other faith groups.
The majority of Americans have a favorable impression of Southern Baptists, according to the LifeWay Research study. However, 40 percent of respondents have an unfavorable view of the denomination and more than a third strongly assume an SBC church is not for them.
The negative viewpoint is slightly higher (44 percent) among the unchurched, according to the study. more >>
The charges of child sexual assault and the alleged cover-up revolving around the Penn State University football team are pushing Christian leaders throughout the U.S. to respond with warnings and advice to pastors and congregations on how to protect children.
One such response came from evangelical leader Dr. Thom Rainer, who is president and CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources, an arm of the Southern Baptist Convention. Rainer addressed pastors, youth leaders, and lay leaders in a post published on his website Thursday that outlined five “absolutely necessary steps that will avoid problems before they occur” while protecting children from sexual predators.
The LifeWay publishing executive, who describes himself as an avid college football fan and devoted family man, also wrote that “the university’s sexual abuse scandal has saddened and angered me, because it is everyone’s job to protect our children.” more >>
Although a majority of Protestant pastors consider themselves privileged to be in ministry, many also feel then can be prone to discouragement and loneliness, according to a study released by LifeWay Research earlier this week.
More than half (55 percent) of the 1,000 U.S. Protestant pastors surveyed by the faith-based research group said they agreed with the statement, “I find it easy to get discouraged.” The same percentage of pastors also said that being in pastoral ministry makes them feel lonely at times.
However, a full 98 percent agree with the statement, “I feel privileged to be a pastor,” with 93 percent strongly agreeing. Only about a half-percent of the pastors disagree with the statement, according to the survey. more >>
Americans who make Bible reading a part of their everyday life prefer word-for-word translations of the original Greek and Hebrew over thought-for-thought translations, according to a new study released by LifeWay Research.
In the study using 2,000 Bible readers, people were asked whether they prefer “word-for-word translations, where the original words are translated as exactly as possible” or “thought-for-thought translations, where the translators attempt to reproduce the intent of the original thought rather than translating the exact words.”
Sixty-one percent chose word-for-word, according to Nashville-based LifeWay Research. more >>