Resurrection Faith

Mike Nappa did a survey of 845 Christian teenagers, The Jesus Survey, and asked them if Jesus was raised from the dead, that is, if he came back to life.

Once again, Nappa makes statements, provides answers from strongly agree to strongly disagree, and then plots the results. He also seeks to probe the issue from a positive affirmation to a negative denial in order to confirm the reliability of the first question.

How do you read these numbers and their importance? Anything surprising here?

1. 66% of Christian teenagers strongly disagree that Jesus “could not have physically come back to life” while 17% somewhat disagree; thus, 17% deny the resurrection. And this is somewhat confirmed when 60% strongly agree Jesus came back to life, with 25% more somewhat agreeing. Again, about 17% are negative on the resurrection.

2. Nappa sorts these questions through denominations and this time pushes back against some denominations represented in this teenage group: Presbyterians (64%), UMC (61%), Baptist (53%), Catholic (47%), Episcopal (40%), and UCC (36%) — strongly affirm resurrection.

3. There is a correlation between views on the Bible and belief in resurrection: The Unshakeables are at 80%, Uncertains at 48%, Unsettleds at 37%, and Unbelieving at 16%.

4. He plots by teenage age too, with the conclusion that as teenagers age the percentage who believe in the resurrection lowers.

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