September 13, 2013Research

NEW RESEARCH: Many Americans Link U.S. Military Strike in Syria to End Times

One in Three Americans Believe the Syrian Conflict Could Lead to the End of the World
NEW RESEARCH: Many Americans Link U.S. Military Strike in Syria to End Times
Image: Courtesy of LifeWay Research

Americans weren't talking about Armageddon during the air strikes on Bosnia. They are now.

Over the last few weeks, I noticed Elizabeth Dias' story in TIME, J.D. Gallop's story, which was picked up in USAToday, and a few others. So, we decided to do a quick survey.

Previous U.S. military action, like the war in Afghanistan or air strikes during 1990s war in Bosnia, didn't get the same reaction, as the situation in Syria. My guess is the fact that Syria is specifically mentioned in the Bible, and shares a border with Israel, has people thinking about the end times.

And linking Bible prophecy to Syria is appealing to many Christians—especially in light of Late Great Planet Earth in the 1970s as well as the Left Behind book series.

So LifeWay Research asked three questions about Syria and the end of the world as part of a telephone survey of 1,001 Americans conducted September Sept. 6-10, 2013.

From the release:

A recent poll from Nashville-based LifeWay Research found that almost one in three Americans see Syria's recent conflict as part of the Bible's plan for the end times.

One in four think that a U.S. military strike in Syria could lead to Armageddon. One in five believes the world will end in their lifetime.

Thirty-two percent of those polled agree with the statement, "I believe the battles in Syria are all part of the prophecies of the Book of Revelation," Forty-nine percent disagree.

Twenty-six percent of those surveyed agree with statement, "I believe that U.S. military intervention in Syria might lead to the Battle of Armageddon that's spoken about in the Book of Revelation."

Women (36 percent) are more likely than men (28 percent) to see a link between current events in Syria and the Bible.

Those in the South (40 percent) and with household incomes under $25,000 (41 percent are more likely to see Syria's woes in the Bible. Those in the Northeast (24 percent) or with incomes over $75,000 (20 percent) are more skeptical.

Those who attend worship once or twice a month are more likely to see a tie between Syria's trouble and the book of Revelation (51 percent agree), as are evangelical, born again, and fundamentalist Christians (58 percent agree.)

Fewer of those who rarely (25 percent) or never attend (14 percent) agree.

Older Americans are more likely to think U.S. airstrikes could lead to the battle of Armageddon, with 34 percent of those over 65 agreeing. Only 21 percent of those 18 to 29 agree.

Younger Americans, however, are more likely to think the world would end in their lifetime. Twenty-four percent of those 18 to 29 agree, as opposed to only 15 percent of those over 65.

About a third (32%) of evangelical, born-again, fundamentalist Christians believe the world will end in their lifetime.

You can read the full release here and the graphics are below.

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