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Old 04-22-2015, 08:25 PM
 
3,360 posts, read 2,786,817 times
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Yes, its down. Yes, there are churches that are shrinking. But its still THE major religion of the United States. Nearly 3/4 of the country still considers itself Christian. Yet we have atheists/agnostics/anti-religious people claiming "Christianity is dead!" We are still a very "Christian nation." Many of the traditional denominations are shrinking in favor of mega churches and evangelical protestant denominations such as the Assemblies of God. Seriously, people around here and in the real world really over exaggerate. There are a ton of immigrants coming in who are Christians. I know a lot of younger people who are religious, so the notion that the millennials aren't religious is exaggerated also.

What are your thoughts?
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Old 04-22-2015, 08:40 PM
 
Location: Canada
6,066 posts, read 2,637,733 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xboxmas View Post
Yes, its down. Yes, there are churches that are shrinking. But its still THE major religion of the United States. Nearly 3/4 of the country still considers itself Christian. Yet we have atheists/agnostics/anti-religious people claiming "Christianity is dead!" We are still a very "Christian nation." Many of the traditional denominations are shrinking in favor of mega churches and evangelical protestant denominations such as the Assemblies of God. Seriously, people around here and in the real world really over exaggerate. There are a ton of immigrants coming in who are Christians. I know a lot of younger people who are religious, so the notion that the millennials aren't religious is exaggerated also.

What are your thoughts?
Christianity is far from Dead..BUT, what is changing are those extremist's who preach death and doom IF you don't believe in certain ( self defined deduction/interpretation) scriptures...

That to me is no different than extremists who cite their old scriptures that condone what they do..like exterminating a town of babies/women and anyone who won't come over to their side of thinking and play the game of exterminations of anyone who doesn't believe like they do!! (ISIL)

It's pretty sad to even have to equate such a thing..BUT rhetoric's by some supposed Christians have gone way beyond even what some of those extreme Baptist churches did (Westbero) ..so, I have no fear Christianity is dead. I will also point out that even Pope Frances has changed the views on so many things for Catholics..Even he won't sit in Judgement..unlike so many who use a snip of bible verse to excuse their out of touch hate blame game
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Old 04-22-2015, 09:30 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
46,421 posts, read 19,980,826 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xboxmas View Post
Yet we have atheists/agnostics/anti-religious people claiming "Christianity is dead!"
You are right. They should not be saying that Christianity is dead, they should be saying that Christianity is dying. Or Christianity is looking moribund if not yet in extremis.
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Old 04-22-2015, 10:14 PM
 
3,360 posts, read 2,786,817 times
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Originally Posted by Grandstander View Post
You are right. They should not be saying that Christianity is dead, they should be saying that Christianity is dying. Or Christianity is looking moribund if not yet in extremis.
No. Christianity is dying in Western/Northern Europe(while ironically Islam is growing there). The US is nowhere near that.
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Old 04-22-2015, 10:25 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
46,421 posts, read 19,980,826 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xboxmas View Post
No. Christianity is dying in Western/Northern Europe(while ironically Islam is growing there). The US is nowhere near that.
From your OP:
Quote:
Yes, its down. Yes, there are churches that are shrinking.
Things which are going down, things which are shrinking, does that suggest a healthy prognosis?
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Old 04-22-2015, 10:46 PM
 
671 posts, read 722,372 times
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Look traditional Christianity reached a peak and Christian light has replaced the "by the book" crowd. 100 years ago it was considered completely sane to reject scientific fact because of words in the bibles,,,that is not the case today. We want the comfort of God in our life but will not put fact aside for faith alone. I don't know anything about the mind of God and if God be,,might not know the mind of me.. The only attribute I can give to God is the un-caused cause...Many feel it's right enough to bypass services and joining churches because they have a personal God...Maybe not for some but for me I believe that God,as I understand is a personal communion...No matter how deep or shallow
how sure or unsure... It is what it is.....
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Old 04-22-2015, 11:02 PM
 
Location: M I N N E S O T A
14,852 posts, read 18,612,691 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lyndarn View Post
Christianity is far from Dead..BUT, what is changing are those extremist's who preach death and doom IF you don't believe in certain ( self defined deduction/interpretation) scriptures...

That to me is no different than extremists who cite their old scriptures that condone what they do..like exterminating a town of babies/women and anyone who won't come over to their side of thinking and play the game of exterminations of anyone who doesn't believe like they do!! (ISIL)

It's pretty sad to even have to equate such a thing..BUT rhetoric's by some supposed Christians have gone way beyond even what some of those extreme Baptist churches did (Westbero) ..so, I have no fear Christianity is dead. I will also point out that even Pope Frances has changed the views on so many things for Catholics..Even he won't sit in Judgement..unlike so many who use a snip of bible verse to excuse their out of touch hate blame game
Really? that is news to me. most religious people i know don't do such things, they mostly keep their beliefs to themselves and don't care if people have different beliefs... the only people who have tried to change my beliefs and disrespect me because of my beliefs are Atheist.
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Old 04-23-2015, 03:04 AM
 
Location: S. Wales.
45,280 posts, read 13,396,273 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xboxmas View Post
Yes, its down. Yes, there are churches that are shrinking. But its still THE major religion of the United States. Nearly 3/4 of the country still considers itself Christian. Yet we have atheists/agnostics/anti-religious people claiming "Christianity is dead!" We are still a very "Christian nation." Many of the traditional denominations are shrinking in favor of mega churches and evangelical protestant denominations such as the Assemblies of God. Seriously, people around here and in the real world really over exaggerate. There are a ton of immigrants coming in who are Christians. I know a lot of younger people who are religious, so the notion that the millennials aren't religious is exaggerated also.

What are your thoughts?
The indications are becoming clearer all the time that a move to irreligion is happening, and faster than I would have believed. We godless are under no illusions about how far there is to go. The believers seem to be under an illusion that it is not happening.

They indulge in a lot of self -deluding arguments, looking at their own community of believers and counting new converts; looking at the huge megachurches and totting up the converts in China. All part of the need to delude themselves into denial.

Well, I am cautious myself. I just see the signs as encouraging; very encouraging. And in fact I believe that the problem is not in deconverting people from religion, but getting them to realize that they don't actually believe it - they only think they do, or are just sorta so used to it they cannot imagine life without it.

It's like a bad habit the world needs to kick.
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Old 04-23-2015, 05:33 AM
bUU
 
Location: Florida
12,085 posts, read 9,215,304 times
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Christianity has died a dozen times. If you had a time machine and brought Pope Leo I to one of Rev. Rick Warren's worship services, and told the Pope that this was the most influential Christian in the most influential nation in the world, then the Pope would be the first to say that Christianity is dead.

The deaths of Christianity, one after another, happened gradually, and quite infrequently during the thousand years prior to the mid 17th century. Since then the deaths have been more frequent, and less gradual. Simply put, those who see the increasing irrelevance of Christian scripture have routinely, and shall continue to, co-op the faith, distort it to help it present an illusion that recovers some of the lost relevance, and then try to peddle their distortion as "the real thing". Eventually, a critical mass of irrelevance of the foundational basis of Christianity may be reached, and Christianity will be gone. But don't underestimate the power of human ingenuity as practices by these distortion artists.
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Old 04-23-2015, 06:15 AM
 
Location: Northeastern US
14,301 posts, read 9,699,159 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iNviNciBL3 View Post
Really? that is news to me. most religious people i know don't do such things, they mostly keep their beliefs to themselves and don't care if people have different beliefs... the only people who have tried to change my beliefs and disrespect me because of my beliefs are Atheist.
Do not confuse honest disagreement and rational argument with disrespect. The charge of "trying to change my beliefs" is also mostly projection. Obviously when someone argues a case against your position there is some implicit desire to change your mind, but no more so than when you argue FOR your position. Mostly what I want as an atheist is to be understood and respected and left alone.

In the Real World (tm), aka "meatspace", I never discuss religion or politics with random people. Here on a forum like this, though, people come here explicitly to discuss (in this case) religion and what believers generally take umbrage to is that they have to justify their position just like anyone else. They are just used to a free ride. The other thing they don't like is the discovery, in having to play on a level playing field in the marketplace of ideas, that they not only are fighting with one hand tied behind their back; they have literally nothing that doesn't involve logical fallacies, unsubstantiated assertions, cooked "facts" or no facts at all.

As for disrespect ... here again, to be clear, it is only your beliefs we lack respect for (obviously, otherwise we'd believe too). It is not our fault if you confuse your beliefs with your sense of self and therefore see argument against your sacred beliefs as an existential threat.

Heck, I don't even know you, so how could I disrespect you? Your ideas, though, might be another matter. If they are standard fundamentalist ideas, sure, I'm not going to respect the ideas themselves. That's different from you as a person, or from your right to believe whatever you wish. But the actual ideas? Yes, of course I'm willing to call them ridiculous if they are.

Here's a practical example that may be relatable. My stepson has issues with OCD and ADHD. He has had to drop out of college twice when he became overwhelmed by his assignments and his self-defeating perfectionist beliefs about how to go about performing them. I asked him how these beliefs have been working out for him; he admitted, not well. I then said that before I take him back to college in the fall for another run at his final undergrad year, I want to see him demonstrate a change in his beliefs because otherwise it will just be the same results and I'll be hauling him back again halfway through. He did not like me saying that but at least he's smart enough to know I love him and care about him and I'm not judging him, just his beliefs, as dysfunctional and unjustified and frankly both crazy and stupid.

And the irony is that I call him on that precisely BECAUSE I know he's better than that. He's neither crazy nor stupid; so I expect him to start acting accordingly. Maybe you can understand then that in dealing with theists in debates, I actually think most of them are better than they are acting. I know; I used to be one of you!

If a theist has come here assuming we have no basis for our unbelief and he has one for his belief, and is quickly disabused of that notion, then it should be a win for him ... yay, he gets to deal better in reality. But no, it is usually a pout session where the theist complains that he is being personally attacked when he's not.
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