We’ve all heard the depressing statistics about the decline in biblical literacy among Americans at large. This writer, however, says that it’s a problem for churches, too:
In my travels among the local churches, it’s rare I hear thoroughly biblical-based sermons. In some local churches I’ve waited as long as 45 minutes before I heard an allusion to a single quote of Scripture. What are pastors saying? Sometimes it’s long-winded stories, massive references to the flavor-of-the-month book, or deep dives into a pet project such as social justice ministries, guest speakers of many flavors, or short-term mission trips. Liturgical churches tend to use more Scripture than most, but often it’s read by congregation members unfamiliar with the passages of Scripture, who are unable to read them with meaningful conviction.
If the churches aren’t teaching the Bible, what hope does the rest of society have for understanding it?
Stated another way, the problem with a lack of interest in the Bible must not be laid at the feet of American society. Rather, it should be laid at the feet of the churches, and more specifically the leaders of those churches. It’s really impossible to put the blame anywhere else.
(4 min read; 848 words)
Chris Thompson: Bible unlocks understanding, but few are reading it | Religion | Anchorage Daily News [Editorial note as of July 10, 2014: It appears that the newspaper is no longer maintaining a page for this article, and neither does the Wayback Machine have it archived. Sorry.]