The Bible is America’s favorite unopened text, and many who swear by it can’t say what’s in it. – David Gibson
That the American Evangelical is biblically illiterate is not disputed. Much has been written on the topic. Survey after survey have shown that professing Christians are ignorant of the Scriptures, including those who have grown up in the church.
But this sad news does not mean that Evangelicals aren’t reading something else. Here is a summary from CBD, “today’s leading resource for Christian goods:”
There are really only two types of Christian books:
What is clear from this report is that American Evangelicals prefer to learn theology by way of fiction stories rather than scholarly or primary works. Today’s eschatology is derived from Left Behind novels, demonology from Frank Peretti horror tales, and a doctrine of God from The Shack. Note that the top five CBD book genre are about man, not God. 79% of all Christian books are about man and his problems while only 21% of Christian reading is about God and Scripture [i].
In the present day, many churches profess to preach the Bible. The heartrending truth is that few really do. A man-centered theology has replaced the glory of God. Christianity today is man-centered, not God-centered.
[i] In my original research I wanted to classify “Missions, Evangelism, & Apologetics” as a theological topic. Unfortunately, a perusal of the book titles and review of the excerpts revealed that they were by and large self-help books, church-growth strategies, and studies on denominations. Example: The top selling book in the missions & evangelism category is a book on homosexuality by James Dobson. In second place is a parable by Max Lucado where a divine “trashman” shoulders our soul-polluting garbage so that we may stand pure before God.