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Blog / The State of the Bible 2018: Most Americans Want to Read the Bible

The State of the Bible 2018: Most Americans Want to Read the Bible

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More Americans are expressing interest in increasing their interaction with the Bible, according to the annual State of the Bible 2018 research—commissioned by American Bible Society (@americanbible) and conducted by Barna Group (@barnagroup).

[Read the Bible Gateway Blog post, The State of the Bible 2018: Five Types of Bible Readers]

State of the Bible 2018

The report reveals a majority of Americans, 57%, declare they wish they used the Bible more than they currently do. While 89% of those who are considered Bible Engaged desire to increase their Bible use, 70% of those considered Bible Neutral are also interested in greater time with the Bible.

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The findings of Americans’ growing desire for more of the Bible are among a number of Bible statistics recently released about Americans’ beliefs and behaviors.

  • 48% of Americans are considered Bible users—meaning they watch, listen, pray, or use Bible content or text in any form outside of a church service three to four times a year
  • 35% use the Bible every week
  • 62% report reading the Bible because it brings them closer to God
  • 25% have read the Bible in its entirety
  • 66% express some curiosity to know more about the Bible including 29% who express a strong desire

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  • 63% say they’re interested in knowing about who Jesus is; 31% are strongly interested.
  • 65% say their level of Bible use is the same as it was a year ago.
  • 58% say the Bible has impacted the way they live their lives
  • 85% believe the Bible has resulted in their willingness to engage in their faith more and show more loving behavior toward others (84%)
  • 71% say they’re more generous with their time, energy, or financial resources
  • After reading the Bible in the past week, 97% of adults say they gave some or a lot of thought to how it might apply to their lives.
  • Respondents say the Bible encourages: Generosity (81%), Patience (81%), and Serving the poor (78%).

[Read the Bible Gateway Blog post, Latest Bible-Related Research]

An overwhelming majority (82%) of Americans own a Bible in their household. When asked which version of the Bible Americans prefer, the King James Version (KJV) still tops the list at 33%. But, there is growing interest in the New International Version (NIV) as 14% prefer it—up from 10% in 2011. Preference toward the King James Version dropped seven percentage points since 2016 and 12% since 2011.

[Read Bible Gateway Blog posts that Introduce You to the Bible]

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Filed under Bible, Bible Gateway Anniversary, Bible News, Bible Readers, Polls and Surveys