Belief in Prosperity Gospel on the Rise Among American Churchgoers

A recent study has detected a rise in the number of American churches that teach the Prosperity Gospel – the idea that increased financial contributions to their churches and charitable causes will result in greater blessings from God. Carried out by Lifeway Research, the poll showed 52% of American protestant churchgoers say their church teaches such a belief. This represents a significant rise from the 38% who expressed similar sentiments in a study carried out in 2017. Scott McConnell, executive director of Lifeway Research, commented: “In the last five years, far more churchgoers are reflecting prosperity gospel teachings, including the heretical belief that material blessings are earned from God.” “It is possible the financial hits people have taken from inflation and the pandemic have triggered feelings of guilt for not serving God more. But Scripture does not teach that kind of direct connection.”

The increase is particularly notable among the younger congregants and those with less formal education. For instance, 81% of churchgoers aged 18-34, as well as 85% of those aged 35-49, subscribe to this idea. Similarly, individuals with high school or partial college education (81%) are more inclined toward this belief compared to those with a bachelor’s (67%) or postgraduate (65%) degree.McConnell continued: “This research does not rule out the possibility that biblical teachings were poorly heard by more young adults, but they definitely have experienced a lack of clear biblical teaching on the reason for generosity.” The study also found that three in four churchgoers (76%) believe God wants them to prosper financially, including 43% who strongly agree. Fewer (45%) believe they have to do something for Him in order to receive material blessings from God, with 21% strongly agreeing.

Source: Premier Christian News

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