Survey Reveals Increase in Number of 'Worldly Christians'
An online quiz started a year ago that examines how consistently Christians are living out the teachings of Jesus Christ has found an increase in the number of believers who are "Christians in name only."
"The results are disturbing, as 1 in 3 self-proclaimed Christians admit they rarely live the teachings of Jesus Christ," said R. Brad White, the founder of Changing the Face of Christianity, which created the test. "Our mission is to reverse negative Christian stereotypes by helping Christians become more like Jesus Christ. And so, our goal is to work with local churches and to help transform these unChristians into spiritually mature Christians who walk the walk, and better represent our faith to the world."
The nonprofit Christian education organization released last week the results of the anonymous self-assessment test, which asked Christians how they would act in real-life dilemmas and sought to determine whether respondents were "Far from Christ," a "Worldly Christian," a "Good Christian," or a "Spiritually Mature Christian." Started in 2011, the results initially indicated that one in four scored as "Worldly Christians," or "Christians in name only" as the organization describes them, but now, the latest results show that the number has risen from 23.7 percent to 30.9 – or almost 1 in 3 who are now "Worldly Christians."
More than 1,500 people have responded to the quiz, which was started in Sept. 2011 and collected results up to April 2012. In the three other categories, only 2.9 percent ranked in the "Far From Christ" section, 38.5 percent were "Good Christians," while 27.8 percent were "Spiritually Mature Christians."
"A significant majority of Christians consistently live their faith. In addition to the 27.8% of spiritually mature Christians out there, 38.5% of Christians take their faith seriously and are striving daily to live as good Christians. Yes, we are still human. We stumble. We fail. We make mistakes. We screw up. These Christians aren't perfect, but are striving to consistently practice their faith. These Christians are at the tipping point and very close to becoming spiritually mature. This is incredibly promising to us. But there is also a risk that many of them will go the other way," added White.
Some of the questions on the quiz included: "How often do you read your Bible and/or have quiet time with the Lord?" and "How have you been transformed by your acceptance of Jesus Christ as your savior?" The test is still available on the website for people wishing to take it.