Earlier this week, Pew Research revealed the results of a national survey. The survey focused on "America's Changing Religious Landscape," and asked questions regarding God and morality.
According to the survey, most U.S. adults now say that it is not necessary to believe in God in order to be moral and have good values. 56% of people said that religion does not change moral views. This is a dramatic increase from 2011 when less than half of people believed that idea (49%).
Further statistics revealed that this overall percentage does not only indicate the increase of people with no religious affiliation but also shows the change of beliefs among those who do consider themselves to be Christians.
In the past, it has been more common for "nones" to say that a belief in God is not a prerequisite for morals and good values. "Nones" are people who describe themselves as atheist, agnostic, or "nothing in particular." Because of the increase of "nones," it is not surprising that the total percentage has increased.
What is more surprising, however, is the decrease of evangelicals that think a belief in God is necessary for good values and morals. In the survey, 45% of religiously affiliated adults said that a belief in God is unnecessary for morality.
The number of Protestants that think a belief in God is not necessary for morality increased from 26% in 2011 to 32%. While evangelicals still believe that faith is intrinsically tied to morality, the overall percentage has decreased from 72% to 65%.
The survey showed results specifically from white evangelical Protestants, though other statistics have shown a similar trend among other groups. The surveys showed that people are moving in the same direction among white mainline Protestants, black Protestants, and white Catholics.
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