The Rise of Atheism in America
This article is overly simplified, the number of agnostics probably outnumbers the total atheists. There is truth that the antics and hypocrisy of the false churches and religious right have turned people away from God. In fact that is one of the saddest things about this all. Even while witnessing, I have to tell people scripture and what the Bible actually says because their picture of Christianity has been formed by the phonies filling the airwaves. Very few have heard the direct gospel too. The phonies have tore down faith adding to the already fallen away nature of our culture.
"It's primarily a backlash against the religious Right, say political scientists Robert Putnam and David Campbell. In their book, American Grace, they argue that the religious Right's politicization of faith in the 1990s turned younger, socially liberal Christians away from churches, even as conservatives became more zealous. The dropouts were turned off by churches' Old Testament condemnation of homosexuals, premarital sex, contraception, and abortion. The Catholic Church's sex scandals also prompted millions to equate religion with moralistic hypocrisy. "While the Republican base has become ever more committed to mixing religion and politics," Putnam and Campbell write, "the rest of the country has been moving in the opposite direction." As society becomes more secular, researchers say, doubters are more confident about identifying themselves as nonbelievers. "The collapse of institutional religion in the first 10 years of this century [has] freed so many people to say they don't really care," said author Diana Butler Bass."
I know when I was young, I rejected "Christianity" or what I thought it was, seeing the endless numbers of crooked TV preachers and the teachings that did not add up within the Catholic church. Bad churches produce atheists and agnostics, especially among young people. I know many people now who were taken to churches by parents, who reject religion as a whole. Young people are given no biblical foundation and are given a false version of Christianity instead, that may include the Mormon, Catholic, postmodern "versions' that lead to more unbelief. One thing too, and I've mentioned this on the Dominionist threads, a young person's faith has to be made their OWN, with their own relationship with Jesus Christ, telling a young person you must be a religion simply because your parent is a religion is not going to work. In fact that is one of the things that makes me most nauseous about the Vision Forum/Patriarchy crowd, they remain me of my own Catholic experiences, where one is born into a church and told they must be that religion because of where they were born.
Parents want to provide biblical training and talking to their children about God, but "religion of inheritance" is definitely a path to spiritual failure and ennui.
I look at the churches, and if I did not have my own saving faith in Jesus Christ, I would not want anything to do with what is portrayed as "Christianity" either! Of course knowing other saved believers is another blessing too but this comes from their own relationship with Jesus Christ.
One needs to have that personal relationship with and love for God. For remnant Christians, our relationship with Jesus Christ, allows us to see the truth through all the muck, but what about those who are not even saved, and all they see before them is the hypocrisy, cruelty, corruption and more?
Of course the horrific politics and dreams of world power and theocracy among the supposed "faithful" turns many people off. While sin blinds many, there are sincere seekers out there, I see lost in the the "Christianity" maze, troubled by the evil they see, and wrongly thinking God is running that show. Of course here, pray and the Holy Spirit will call people to salvation in Jesus Christ. There are many out there, who are EX-atheists who are now Christians. Here too I think of my own salvation in Jesus Christ and the years of rejecting God prior to that.
2 Peter 1:3 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:
There are some things I want people to think about even in regards to their own young people and helping to lead them to a saving faith in Jesus Christ.
I more then anyone understand why and how people are led into disbelief. The sad thing about me is around age 9, reading Late Great Planet Earth, sadly a book full of errors but at least some exposure to prophecy and bible verses, and getting VERY INTERESTED in the Bible, is that was definitely squashed by outraged nuns, and others who told me "evangelical Christians" were "crazy". I know by the next year, I was thinking well if the Bible isn't true, why bother? Well that is what is happening too, think about the seminaries, false pastors, etc, who have done their utmost to break down belief in God's Word. The churches are full of even pastors who will tell young students like this...
"Once written, many experts believe, the Gospels were redacted, or edited, repeatedly as they were copied and circulated among church elders during the last first and early second centuries.
-Jeffery L. Sheler, "The Four Gospels," (U.S. News & World Report, Dec. 10, 1990)"
Add in Jesus seminar types like Bart Ehrman influencing folks out there and faith is chipped away. Now here is a tract I have embedded. Many Christians would attest like this man, "Explain Me" describing God in their lives.......