Want proof that American Christianity means very little in our day? About 92% of Congress members claim to be Christian. What’s even more puzzling is the extremely high percentage of “Christian” Democrats:
Though Christians dominate both parties, Democrats are more religiously diverse than Republicans. Of the 301 Republicans in the 114th Congress, Jewish freshman Rep. Lee Zeldin of New York is the only non-Christian.
A large majority of Democrats in Congress (80%) are Christian, with 44% Protestant, 35% Catholic and 1% Mormon. But unlike Republicans, Democrats in Congress are 12% Jewish and have two Buddhist, two Muslims, one Hindu and one unaffiliated member.
To me, that’s proof that American Christianity, or at least the Christianity of most Americans, means almost nothing. Most Americans claim to be Christian (the vast majority, in fact). Yet look around you. What difference does it make? There may have been a time when Christianity had some impact on a person’s worldview, but these days, it’s just a club most people visit a few Sundays a year.
Most Americans claim to be Christian, yet know nothing about the Bible, and form their opinions largely on their own. Between abortion, debt-spending, unjust wars, gay marriage, and the endless litany of legislated immorality, it seems obvious that the much-touted American Christianity is a superficial facade. So why would Congressmen even claim to believe something they obviously don’t?
“On the whole, American adults tend to say that they do want strong religious beliefs in candidates and they tend to say that they would be less likely to vote for someone who says they do not believe in God,” [Alan Cooperman, director of religious research at Pew] added. “Candidates are reflecting the views of the public when they do tend to affiliate with a religious group.”
Oh, so it’s a political maneuver? Never would have guessed it. American Christianity has an illustrious history. But it’s hard to say what kind of future it has in store.