A new Harris Poll reinforces what we knew all along. When it comes to religion, Americans profess to believe orthodox Christian doctrine--but only to a point. Upon closer inspection, many of those polled are as superstitious and ill-informed as we feared. (Click here: Washington Times - Beliefs in God, UFOs prevail).
Here are some of the results:
"Overall, more people believe in the devil, hell and angels than believe in Darwin´s theory of evolution."
"80 percent say they believe in God; among those who attend church weekly, the number is 98 percent." Makes you wonder about the 2% who don't believe in God but go to church anyway!
"Three-quarters believe in miracles, 73 percent believe in heaven, 71 percent say Jesus is the Son of God and 71 percent believe in angels."
Seven out of 10 say Jesus Christ rose from the dead and that the Bible is, all or in part, the "Word of God." That's higher than I would have guessed.
"More than two-thirds - 68 percent - believe in the `survival of the soul after death' and would describe themselves as religious. About 62 percent think that hell exists, 61 percent believe in the Virgin Birth and 59 percent say the devil exists."
"Fewer than half - 47 percent - said they believe in Darwin's theory of evolution; a third said they did not believe in it while 22 percent were not sure what they thought. A full 40 percent said they believe in creationism, though the question did not elaborate on exactly what that term meant." Again, I am a bit surprised by the fact that fewer than half of those polled believe in evolution.
"44 percent of the respondents said they believe in ghosts, 36 percent say UFOs are real while 31 percent believe in both witches and astrology. About a quarter believe in reincarnation, or `that you were once another person.'" This gives me pause when you consider that a whole bunch of people who profess to believe in the deity of Christ and his resurrection, also believe in ghosts and UFOs.
America is a very weird place when it comes to religion.