Teleios Research surveyed young Christians to evaluate opinions about accepted forms of church and biblical resources. Of the 185 participants the majority were: female (63%), <35 years old (72%), from the United States (70%), and evangelical (70%).
This survey showed that these mostly young, evangelical, Christians viewed their local assembly as a valid form of the church (86%). However, many also considered broader community-based Christian relationships (61%) and online fellowship or Bible study (46%) legitimate manifestations of the church.
Regarding their spiritual life, again the local church was noted most often as benefitting expressions of the Christian growth: prayer (86%), praise (90%), fellowship (90%), outreach (81%), and learning scripture (86%).
However, community Christian contacts apart from church also helped Christian growth (range of the 5 expressions noted above (41-51%). In addition, online interactions with individual Christians (31-43%), and organizations (26-33%), and especially in learning the Bible (56%), were important in helping Christian growth. In contrast, local parachurch organizations were reported as meaningful by 12-22%.
Within the local church itself, the resources that most helped participants’ Christian life were: the head pastor’s sermons (79%), the worship service (70%), fellowship (59%), and Bible studies (58%). In contrast, the least important resources were identified as: accountability groups (22%), and non-teaching church-based service such as a helps ministry or assisting with childcare (21%).
Parachurch organizations assisted just over a third of participants, most typically with Bible study (38%) and fellowship (37%). Online resources also helped through streaming other pastor worship services (40%), their own pastor’s worship services (35%), or sermons (34%) or other pastors’ sermons (27%). Bible study groups (35%) and fellowship (30%) also were identified as beneficial.
The survey demonstrates that young Christians are intent to take advantage of a variety of advantageous resources to assist their spiritual life, which most commonly derive from the local church. However, they also utilize online resources and other local individual and parachurch organizations to further their Christian life.
Complete results of this survey can be found here, and please view more findings from Teleios on our website.
WC Stewart, JA Stewart, LA Nelson
About Teleios — Teleios is a non-profit foundation that seeks to demonstrate the truth of scripture and the Christian faith through scientific methods by providing evidence for the positive results of a biblically-based lifestyle. Prior studies conducted by Teleios have shown that the practice of the Christian faith (praise, prayer, fellowship, service and Bible study) and security of salvation increases well-being while reducing guilt.
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