USA Today reports on a study by the Pew Forum on the religious beliefs and practices of American evangelicals, mainline protestants, and Catholics. I can honestly say that I was not at all surprised by the survey's findings.
Read the entire article HERE.
Elements of Eastern faiths and New Age thinking have been widely adopted by 65% of U.S. adults, including many who call themselves Protestants and Catholics, according to a survey by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life released Wednesday...
In the 1980s, Albert Mohler and Julia Jarvis were in graduate school together at Southern Baptist Seminary in Louisville.
Today, Mohler is president of the seminary and a leading voice for Baptist orthodoxy. He sees a "rampant confusion" about faith revealed in the Pew findings.
"This is a failure of the pulpit as much as of the pew to be clear about what is and is not compatible with Christianity and belief in salvation only through Christ," Mohler says.
Pew says two in three adults believe in or cite an experience with at least one supernatural phenomenon, including:
•26% find "spiritual energy" in physical things.
•25% believe in astrology.
•24% say people will be reborn in this world again and again.
•23% say yoga is a "spiritual practice."
Mohler calls these "the au courant confusions," attachments to the latest fashionable free-floating beliefs.
"One hundred years ago, it would have been 'spiritualism.' They wouldn't have known what yoga was but might have been attracted to the 'New Thought' of the time," Mohler says.
His former classmate giggles at that. She's an ordained minister in the progressive United Church of Christ and leads the Interfaith Family Project, which meets for weekly worship at a Silver Spring, Md., high school.
Jarvis, of Takoma Park, Md., also studies with Buddhist teacher Thich Nhat Hanh and finds a spiritual dimension in yoga.
"I don't do astrology, but my mother, who grew up in Birmingham, Ala., and was a staunch Baptist all her life, looked at her horoscope daily and totally believed it," Jarvis says.
Jarvis says her late mother, like 49% of adults in the Pew survey, also had a moment of "religious or spiritual awakening."
"My mother feared for years that I was no longer saved, but just two days before she died, she had an epiphany," Jarvis says. "She said she was 'told' in a spiritual experience to put aside all religious and political differences and just love each other. That was her blessing to me, and that's what I'm doing."
Read the entire article HERE.
God's Word calls this idolatry. It sounds so reasonable to the thinking of the unregenerate. Variety is good in food, clothing, and entertainment. Why not in spiritual matters? After all who am I to question your experience?
This flirtation with and embrace of syncretism among those within the church is more evidence of what happens when the authority and sufficiency of God's Word is abandoned. Liberals challenge the authority of God's Word. They deny the Bible's inerrancy and claim that its theology is contradictory. Ironically, many conservative pastors who profess confidence in the authority and truthfulness of Scripture nevertheless deny its sufficiency by failing to preach it faithfully. Both tendencies lead to the same end.