A majority of Americans believe (62 percent) that climate change is causing natural disasters, but a substantial proportion of the nation also thinks that these calamities are the result of the "end times" (49 percent) as recounted in the Bible, according to the Public Religion Research Institute.
The research firm — which published the findings in its new report — "Believers, Sympathizers & Skeptics," noted in its analysis that this end times proportion is up five percentage points from 2011, when just 44 percent agreed that natural disasters are evidence of the apocalypse.
The percentage was highest in the latest wave of research among white evangelicals (77 percent), who favored the "end times" over climate change (49 percent) when it came to assessing causal factors for recent events.
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Additionally, 57 percent of Americans believe that God intends human beings to live responsibly "with animals, plants, and other resources, which are not just for human benefit." Thirty-five percent of the nation, though, believes that the Lord gave these resources for peoples' sole benefit.
The Public Religion Research Institute also created a Spiritual Experiences Index, which found that Americans who have more "spiritual experiences" generally have a higher concern for the climate.
"The Spiritual Experiences Index finds that about 4-in-10 Americans report very high (19%) or high (21%) frequency of spiritual experiences," according to the research firm. "One-quarter (25%) of Americans report moderate frequency of spiritual experiences, and approximately one-third of Americans report low (16%) or very low (19%) frequency of spiritual experiences."
The Public Religion Research Institute continues, "A majority of Americans who report spiritual experiences very frequently are very (35%) or somewhat (20%) concerned about climate change."
Read more about the results here.
(H/T: Christian Post)
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