But belief, per se, may not be the problem, at least not yet. See today’s article, “Are Christians Becoming Nonbelievers?” — just posted online at: http://www.thenewamerican.com/index.php/culture/family/5546-belief-versus-detachment-christianitys-greatest-challenge-in-the-21st-century
Particularly at this juncture, right before Christmas, every Christian might want to consider the issue in the context of three trends, all of them unique to the present era.
My answer comes from my experience:
This is an area wherein I have some personal experience and insight. In 1985-86, I traveled with the Religious Freedom Crusade, writing songs and speaking before crowds of up to five thousand at a time. In Portland, I was on TV and radio regularly. The leaders of the RFC, like doctors, searched for the source of the infection. It is world-wide. In parts of Europe, many religions are banned. In France, 183 religions, including Baptist, are illegal.
The reason will shock you. Psychiatry doesn't make any money when you go to church. Big Pharma doesn't make any money when you go to your priest or minister for council. And you are not under anyone's control if you take your problems to the Lord. Besides, if your minister, the Pope or God tells you not to follow a government order, you are likely to not follow it. So basically, religion is bad for governments, psychiatrist, pharmaceutical companies and those who seek to control the populace. The "opiate of the masses" is the drug that government most wants to make illegal. What drugs are legal? The ones you see advertised on TV.
The attack is sometimes subtle and sometimes blatant, but it cannot be ignored. Removing prayer from schools, manger scenes from lawns, first of government buildings, then of churches, and taking any mention of God out of government, including the invalidation of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, are only the beginning.
Fewer people are going to church because religion is being made to seem ridiculous, wrong and downright evil. There have been priests going wrong for centuries, but you're only hearing about them now and the news is ghastly. Why? Because "It's dangerous to go to church!" Republicans are being portrayed as "right-wing, religious zealot, nut cases" by democrats, - I personally know a few who speak of anyone who didn't vote for Obama as "religious extremists." They don't know just how extreme I am!
It's simple: If people are animals, lacking a soul and any recourse to what's troubling them except psychotropic drugs, they can be controlled. If they have a soul, answer to a higher authority and believe in a greater reward, one that appreciates ethical behavior and clean living, they are loose cannons and a danger to big government.
Marx, Lenin and Stalin sought to stamp out religion, it was necessary for the State to rule, for the people to submit to the will of the government. The New State, the one begun by past presidents, including the Bushes, and continued full speed by the present Leader of the (soon-to-be-abolished) Free World, must stamp out religion if it is to control the population.
Make no mistake - it's all about control.