Fewer than 20% of Americans engage the Bible in a meaningful way, and statistics suggest that this number is only getting smaller with time. Our society is growing increasingly secular and distant from traditional religious belief—what Christian philosopher Charles Taylor calls “disenchanted.” But, as Taylor and others have pointed out, these aren’t necessarily cold-hearted skeptics with their fists raised to the heavens, unwilling to believe in the divine. These are curious people who long for hope and transcendence, men and women in search of meaning, on a pilgrimage for truth. They desperately want to see our world—and their individual lives—get better, but they just don’t see the Bible as a potential answer to the existential problem at hand.
Research tells us that 150 million Americans are curious about the Bible and believe things in their life and the world around them can be better.
Given our cultural crisis, we’re convinced there is a vast dichotomy between perceptions of the Bible and longings for a better tomorrow, and data confirms this serious disconnect. Research shows that there are four barriers keeping people from exploring the Scriptures: misconceptions, complexity, lack of appeal, and mistrust.