Gallup: Record Low 24% Believe Bible Is Literal Word of God
(Link): Gallup: Record Low 24% Believe Bible Is Literal Word of God by A. Cone
May 16, 2017
Fewer than one in four Americans believe the Bible is “the actual word of God, and is to be taken literally, word for word” — a record low in 40 years of surveys conducted by Gallup.
The 24 percent of literal believers is a 4 percentage point drop from the last (Link): Gallup survey in 2014.
Among respondents, 26 percent believe the Bible is “a book of fables, legends, history and moral precepts recorded by man” — the first time that the biblical literalism view is not greater than biblical skepticism. In 2014, 21 percent were non-literal believers.
Forty-seven percent of Americans have a view in the middle — the Bible is the inspired words of God but not to be taken literally — the same percentage as in 2014.
The survey was conducted May 3-7 with a random sample of 1,011 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. The margin of error is 4 percentage points.
The literal view has decreased from 1976 when 38 percent of U.S. adults thought so. In every age group the percentage has decreased.
A vast majority of Americans still believe the Bible is a holy document — 71 percent.
Broken down by demographics, the biggest group of believers that the Bible is the actual word are non-whites (29 percent), adults aged 50 and older (31 percent) and adults with no college education (31 percent). The fewest believers in the literal word are those 18 to 29 years old (12 percent), 30 to 49 (24 percent) and college graduates (13 percent).