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John Calvin puts forward a very simple reason why love is the greatest gift: “Because faith and hope are our own: love is diffused among others.” In other words, faith and hope benefit the possessor, but love always benefits another. In John 13:34–35 Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Love always requires an “other” as an object; love cannot remain within itself, and that is part of what makes love the greatest gift.
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Just Mike

Church, Parents, & changing views

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In 2007 about 15% of Americans identified as atheist, agnostic, or nothing in particular. Pew Research Center by 2017 that number jumped to 26%.

 

In 1976 roughly 81% of Americans identified as white Christian. The Public Religion Institute states today that number is 43%.

 

A 2016 survey found 35% of Washington residents are religiously unaffiliated, compared to 24% of Americans as a whole; as surveyed by the Public Religion Research Institute

 

Regular church attendance, according to the Leadership Network director Warren Bird, is 1 to 2 times a month. This means it's harder for church members to build relationships with one another.

Older members are the most likely to show up in church, while younger members, especially families with kids, will attend less often. Hartford Institute for Religion Research.

 

According to LifeWay Research; The biggest factor predicting the spiritual health of young adults is whether they read the Bible regularly as kids. "Most church going Protestant parents of young adults grew up to be Christians-but half of them don't actually practice the Christian faith."

 

Evangelicals across America by regions; The West 10% are Evangelical by belief.The Mid West 15% are Evangelical by belief. The South 23% are Evangelical by belief. The North East 5% are Evangelical by Belief According to LifeWay in a set of four questions about the Bible, Jesus, salvation, and evangelism. These questions were developed in partnership with the National Association of Evangelicals. Those who strongly agreed with all four are considered to be evangelicals by belief.

 

According to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 44,000 Americans took their own lives in 2015. Suicide is the second leading cause of death for Americans 15-34 and the fourth for those 35 to 44. According to LifeWay Research "Churchgoers are aware that friends and family of a person who dies by suicide can be isolated from the help they need because of the stigma of suicide. More than half (55%0 of churchgoers say people in their community are more likely to gossip about a suicide than to help a victim's family."

 

Changing views of sex and marriage. "Gallup first started asking Americans what they thought about controversial moral issues, such as extramarital affairs, divorce, and abortion.." In 2001 40% said they thought gay lesbian relations were morally acceptable. "In 2017, support was at 63 %-a growth of 23% points. As well those who say sex between unmarried adults is acceptable rose by 16% points, Divorce being acceptable grew by 14% points.

 

All material was taken form FACTS & TRENDS Winter 2018

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