American Christians and Religious Literacy

Living in a country with a highly educated population, Americans have few legitimate excuses for ignorance.  A Newsweek poll, entitled God’s Numbers found the following:

The latest NEWSWEEK poll shows that 91 percent of American adults surveyed believe in God—and nearly half reject the theory of evolution.

When prioritizing the value of personal research, it seems that few topics could be more important to Americans that religion.  With respect to Christianity, however, religious literacy is extremely low.  A recent article in the Washington Post addresses the issue in Blind Faith: Americans believe in religion — but know little about it

The findings are particularly troubling when the country is apparently in conflict over whether we should teach evolution in schools (a topic that should have been killed around a hundred years ago).  While this clearly helps me understand a lot of the ignorant arguments that are common in the media today, it doesn’t help justify it.  It makes me wonder: if people actually read the scriptures they claim to use as a moral compass, would they still feel the same way?  I think most people would be inclined to reconsider their beliefs.  Ideally, they’d use the extra energy to focus on rationality and reason.


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