Tuesday, June 24, 2008

FIVE KINDS OF CHRISTIANS

Christianity Today and Zondervan Publishers linked up with a research firm to determine the attitude and behaviors of U.S. Christians. More than 1,000 Christians over age 18 were surveyed. The results revealed five significant differences among the religious beliefs and practices among Americans who call themselves Christians.

First, Active Christians (19%)

  • Believe salvation comes through Jesus Christ
  • Committed church goers
  • Bible readers
  • Accept leadership positions
  • Invest in personal faith development through the church
  • Feel obligated to share faith (79% do so)

Second, Professing Christians (20%)

  • Believe salvation comes through Jesus Christ
  • Focus on personal relationship with God and Jesus
  • Simimlar beliefs to Active Christians, different actions
  • Less involved in church, both attending and serving
  • Less commitment to Bible reading or sharing faith

Third, Ligurgical Christians (16%)

  • Predominantly Catholic and Lutheran
  • Regular churchgoers
  • High level of spiritual activity, mostly expressed by serving in church and/or community
  • Recognize authority of the church

Fourth, Private Christians (24%)

  • Largest and youngest segment
  • Believe in God and doing good things
  • Own a Bible, but don't read it
  • Spiritual interest, but not within chuch context
  • Only about a third attend church at all
  • Almost none are church leaders

Fifth, Cultural Christians (21%)

  • Little outward religious behavior or attitudes
  • God aware, but little personal involvement with God
  • Do not view Jesus as essential to salvation
  • Affirm many ways to God
  • Favor universality theology (my note--all go to heaven)

Wouldn't it be interesting to know what the breakdown of the CBC membership would be? Which kind of Christian are you? Particularly alarming is the Private Christian. All the more reason we must pour energies and money into children and student ministries.

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