Home > Uncategorized > Your Unchurched Customers are Biblically Illiterate

Your Unchurched Customers are Biblically Illiterate

This is point #5 of a ten-point article by Brian Moss, written to pastors at Pastors.com. If you better want to understand the people on the spiritual margins who probably aren’t even close to being regular customers, then I encourage you to read the entire list at this link.

In the meantime, I challenge you to consider the implications for us as retailers of this:

5. They are biblically illiterate.

They have absolutely no idea what the Bible actually says.

To many it is a dark mysterious book filled with antiquated dictums of morality which are no longer relevant in the 21st century or it is a compilation of fables and fairy tales intended to teach some life lesson.

To others the Bible is a book that tells of an angry deity bent on suppressing happiness and destroying homosexuals.

One thing is sure, nearly all of them are misguided on the true content of Scripture.

It’s clear that many Americans — including Christians — don’t know their Bible. Just look at the numbers from a recent study:

  • More than 60 percent of Americans can’t name either half of the Ten Commandments or the four Gospels of the New Testament.
  • Some 80 percent (including “born again” Christians) believe that “God helps those who help themselves” is a direct quote from the Bible.
  • And 31 percent believe a good person can earn his/her way into heaven.

POINT: Churches need to stop assuming that their audience has any biblical knowledge whatsoever. Stop saying stupid things like, “open your Bibles to…” or, “I hope you brought your Bibles…” or even worse, “I hope you have a real Bible with you this morning and not some silly Bible app on your phone.” Have you not figured out yet that they don’t own one! We’ve got to begin at the beginning. Tell them how to get a good Bible. Teach the Bible for clarity, not to show off your academic prowess. Offer classes that introduce people to the Bible. Teach the stories of the Bible. Help people with Bible reading plans that make it easy for them to begin their journey with the Bible.

Here’s the full list:

The Top 10 Characteristics of the Average Unchurched Family

• They are a blended home.
• They are spiritually mismatched.
• They are financially strapped.
• They are over-calendared.
• They are biblically illiterate.
• They are ethnically diverse.
• They have a special needs child.
• One in five have experienced some form of trauma in the home.
• They want to be successful.
• They are spiritually hungry.

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Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Moral Monkey
    December 25, 2016 at 12:20 am

    I’m honestly curious how he was able to conduct a study to determine these ‘Top 10 characteristics” I’ve known lots of biblically illiterate xtians (and a small handful of bright, intelligent, well versed ones) and this list really doesn’t ring true at all. I know my personal experiences ashould just be considered anecdotal…but the disparity is still pretty big and I’d like to learn how the list came about.

    • December 25, 2016 at 1:49 pm

      I can see how it would be easy to dismiss these as sweeping generalizations. From anecdotal interactions with many of these, albeit in a Christian context, I would concur more strongly on these:
      • They are a blended home.
      • They are spiritually mismatched.
      • They are biblically illiterate.
      • They are ethnically diverse.
      • They are spiritually hungry.

      Ones I was less confident in included:
      • They have a special needs child.
      • One in five have experienced some form of trauma in the home.
      but on these they offered strong statistical support. And they claim to have been tracking this for 16 years.

      Feel free to click through to their page and interact with the comments.

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