Home > Uncategorized > Dumbed Down? Why Reading the Bible Is so Elusive—Yet so Vitally Important

Three reasons we need to engage Scripture both intentionally and frequently

According to a study done by LifeWay Research, nine out of every ten households own a Bible. That’s a pretty considerable subsection of the American public. After reading this, I went home to see how many my family owns and found a total of eight sitting on one shelf alone; this doesn’t count the number of Bibles I have in my office at the Billy Graham Center.

I thought to myself, “That’s a lot of Bibles!”

Despite the fact that most Americans could likely walk around their homes and count more than a few Bibles dispersed throughout, only one in five Americans have actually read the Bible in its entirety and more than half of Americans (53%) have read merely a smattering of passages to none at all.

This begs the question: Why are people choosing not to engage with Scripture?

Bibles don’t just fill our homes; they fill our discourse. Many living among us have testified to the many ways that the Bible has changed their lives. Some public schools teach from it as an important, civilization-shaping piece of literature. In places where religious persecution runs rampant, many around the world have even died to protect it.

So, in short, it seems that it is not the case that people aren’t reading the Bible because they don’t know it exists. Could it be that they avoid reading it because they don’t like it?

The same LifeWay study shows us that for the most part, this is not the case either.

A very small subset of the population would describe it as harmful (7%) or bigoted (8%). Instead, far more think that think that the Bible is a good source of morals (52%). They would also say that despite the fact that it was written so long ago, its content is still helpful today (37%); some (36%) …

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