from this article here

Thirty percent of Americans believe that the Bible is the actual word of God, according to a recent Gallup survey. While nearly 50 percent agree that Scripture is “inspired” by God, only three in ten say that it should be interpreted literally. Another 17 percent say the Bible is merely an ancient book of stories recorded by man. According to Gallup, the view that the Bible is divinely inspired, but should not be taken literally, has been the most common opinion over the 40 years that the pollster has been querying Americans on the issue. Gallup noted that the “high point” in the number of Americans believing in the literal interpretation of Scripture was 40 percent in 1980 and 1984, with the low coming in 2001, when only 27 percent said they thought the Bible was the actual, literal word of God.


Among specific religious groups, Gallup found that Protestant were the most hard-core in their convictions about the Bible, with 41 percent believing in a literal interpretation of Scripture and 46 percent saying it is inspired by God. By contrast, 21 percent of Catholics believe the Bible is the actual word of God, while the percentage goes up to 65 percent for Catholics who believe it is the inspired word of God. As for respondents claiming no religious persuasion, only five percent thought the Bible is the actual word of God while, predictably, 63 percent thought it was nothing more than a book of legends and fables.


so, does this mean that the fundies have a lot more work to do or perhaps our perception is driven by a media that seems obsessed with promoting christian dogma for some reason? if less than half of all christians in general don't believe the word of god is 100% accurate, then why are they so quick to defend it when science and truth prove it wrong?


any thoughts welcome!

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well, if it is true as you both intimate, then why do they seem to have all of the power base in the usa at this point? how does a minority of believers wield so much power in a republic in which the people vote for their president?


has christianity become the defacto religion of choice and power in the usa? is there a way to stop the slide to theocracy as it is clear they don't represent the majority of christians let alone the majority of americans.

No, that's not what i mean. I don't think it's true. I think the nutcases are actually a lot more prevalent then what those polls indicate, hence to Tea Party, hence the Republican field.
The Republicans are not all religious fundamentalists. That's unfair to say. It is like saying the Democrats are all anti-American socialist Marxists.

They are definitely a force but they do not define the Republican party - now certain Republic candidates may be defined as extremist religious right wing wackos - but the party has the likes of Rudy Giuliani, former Ambassador John Bolton, Michael Steele, and many on the right who are sound on fiscal policy, tough on illegal immigration, and strong on national security including Karl Rove. At the current moment, none of them seem to be among the candidates of the Republican party - but be patient, they will soon join the fray.

Again, I can state that those on the left are anti-American socialist Marxists based on your stereotyping and categorization of the entire party. And I am not a Republican - I am a moderate Democrat (I have my own brain).

There goes my nice and simple clarifying model of the two party system being exchanged for a four party system.

The former Republicans now fall into the party of Palinian teabaggers and the party of Rovian neocons. And what used to be Democrats now fall into moderate hawkish, warmongering torture-aopologists on the one side and Dennis Kucinich on the other.

Sassan I said the Republican candidates for the Presidency not the entire party. And so far all of the field has said marriage is between a and a women which is a literal interpretation of the bible so I think my statement is accurate.
I agree. The current candidates are jokes. They are making it too easy for an Obama reelection - unless a moderate runs who will be tough on illegal immigration and strong on national security.

"Literal interpretation" is shaky wording.  Nowhere in the Bible does it say only one man and one woman.  That is a fabrication of the later Church, to help control inheritance.  The OT is full of polygamy, concubines, rape, shacking up with the help, etc, depending on what was convenient for the "Special" person in the story.

It's always fun to point that out to self-proclaimed literalists, too, to watch their heads spin in denial.

Most Christians (even if fundamentalist) don't believe the Bible is the exact word of god. That is what makes Christians different than Muslims (along with Jesus as a peaceful figure compared to Muhammad and the evils of the quran compared to the new testament) - they generally believe it was written down by various scribes over the centuries - so in regards to the bible being the exact word of god - more people would claim it so due to cognitive dissonance - that doesn't mean there aren't religious fundamentalists in America but overall - it is no more than probably 30% (fundamentalist wise - and it is still a much too high number)
And we are a secular country - not a theocracy. While I agree religious nonsense is in the way of education and knowledge - we just need this older generation to die out.
If you don't believe we are a secular country - you have no clue what a secular country is. Our country has a strong foundation of the separation of church and state - we are more secular than most European countries based on our constitution.

I hate it when a women disagrees with me? I value it. Why and how would you infer that I am sexist? I love debate - whether from a male - a female - an African American - a white - a camel - I don't care - I am an argumentative person and I enjoy discussions - but how could you infer such a thing?

I'm not the one bringing people's color and sex to the plate as some other people in other threads have. I am a fellow human being and I value discussions with fellow Homo sapiens.

And I know my debate tactic is sharp and full of rhetoric - you should see how I go after others. I wasn't going after you - and I know you know what a secular country is; I was just inferring in that if you think the United States is not a secular country - then "you don't know what truly secular is" - just like people who have claimed in other threads that America is a police state or about to be a police state - truly don't know what a police state is.


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