Study: Only 4 Percent of Millennials Hold a “Biblical Worldview”
What does that mean for future generations?
Four percent of millennials hold a biblical worldview, according to a recent study.
The American Culture and Faith Institute (ACFI) published results of a survey earlier this month. The survey measured the core beliefs of millennials compared to older generations.
The study shows that millennials hold more liberal views of things like socialism and same-sex marriage than older generations. But there’s another big difference. Millennials are much less likely to become conservative in the future.
It’s unlikely that even 10% of millennials will ever hold a biblical worldview.
While it’s normal for younger generations to hold liberal views, they drift to the right over time. Not so for millennials.
“Millennials are so far to the left-of-center” that “even a typical amount of repositioning” will leave them very liberal, says George Barna. It’s unlikely that even 10 percent will ever hold a biblical worldview, he says. Barna is the Executive Director of the ACFI and is cited in the study.
Millennials vs. Older Generations: Major Differences
ACFI conducted the study in February 2017. It measured responses from 1,000 millennials, that is, those under age 30.
Notable findings include:
- Only 59 percent of millennials identify as Christian. This compares to 72 percent of adults from older generations.
- Only 33 percent of millennials (one in three) are born again Christians.
- Only twelve percent of millennials identify as conservative. Twenty-six percent are liberal. For adults older than 30, conservatives outnumber liberals two to one.
- Almost have (44 percent) of millennials prefer socialism over capitalism.
- As many as 15 percent of millennials identify as LGBT. Only six percent of those over 30 identify as LGBT.
The only question more millennials than older adults held a biblical worldview on? Whether all people are good. Millennials are less likely to believe this than adults over 30. This lines up with the biblical concept of original sin and man’s fallen nature.
Worldview Development: Christians, Get Busy
What exactly is a worldview, anyway? “A comprehensive conception or apprehension of the world especially from a specific standpoint.” That’s according to Merriam-Webster.
Dictionary.com defines the the original German word, weltanschauung. “A comprehensive conception or image of the universe and of humanity’s relation to it.”
Christians must take action if they want future generations to embrace a biblical worldview.
So how do people develop their worldviews? Barna says that parents are the most powerful influencers of worldview. And most often, a person’s worldview develops between 18 months and 13-years-old.
There will of course be exceptions to this rule. But in general, “the worldview a person possesses at age 13 is … the worldview they will die with.”
What does this mean for future Americans? “Millennials entering their prime childbearing years,” Barna notes. They will likely pass their current worldview to their children. Christians must take action if they want future generations to embrace a biblical worldview.
Christians will need to “step in and impact the spiritual well-being of our future adults,” he says.
ACFI’s study on millennials’ worldview isn’t the first to reach these conclusions. Recently The Atlantic noted that people are leaving the church in large numbers. The Pew Research Center also noted the trend among millennials.