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Taking Bible Stories Literally

Most Americans don't have a problem with key narratives.

According to a new poll conducted by the Barna Group, a substantial majority of Americans believes in the literal truth of six key Bible stories. For those of us worried about how to communicate biblical truth in our increasingly postmodern and pluralistic culture, the findings indicate that many folks continue to accept the Word of God at face value.

Here are the overall results among adults to the question of whether they thought a specific story in the Bible was "literally true, meaning it happened exactly as described in the Bible":

Christ's crucifixion, burial, and resurrection (75%);

Daniel in the Lion's Den (65%);

Moses parting the Red Sea (64%);

David and Goliath (63%);

Peter walking on water (60%);

God creating the universe in six days (60%).

When you break down the numbers, it gets even more interesting. Several factors are correlated with less belief in a literal resurrection: high education, mainline vs. non-mainline Protestantism, Catholicism vs. Protestantism, and white vs. black. ...

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