Only 9 percent of Americans read their Bibles daily, one-fourth open the scriptures once a week and 38 percent never use them, an American Bible Society survey found.
That same study found a stunning 26 million Americans stopped turning to scripture regularly during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, when routines and norms were profoundly upended.
“This is grieving to me,” Michael Youssef, pastor of the Church of the Apostles in Atlanta and executive president of Leading the Way, said in an interview with CBN News. “And we are surprised at what’s happening in our culture and our society? Are we surprised when we have neglected the measuring stick?”
Youssef, author of the new book “How to Read the Bible (As If Your Life Depends on It),” addressed statements that Pastor Andy Stanley made about the Old Testament and its importance to the Christian faith. Youssef compared the Old Testament to the foundation of a building, a necessity for any sound structure.
“Get ‘unhitched’ from the Old Testament?” he asked. “This would be like saying, ‘I love this big, beautiful, tall building, but the foundation is not really necessary. Let’s get rid of it.’ You get rid of the foundation, the building will not stand for very long. And I often say if you understand the Bible, if you understand the unity of that book, it is one book — not two books.”
Yousef often compares the Bible to a house.
“The Old Testament is that house, the foundation and the walls, but it’s lacking a roof,” he said. “The New Testament is that roof. And therefore, together, you have one building, one house. Or like a play that has two acts, act one and act two. One without the other does not really make a lot of sense.”
The books of the Old Testament, Youssef said, constantly declare “Christ is coming,” which comes to fruition in the pages of the New Testament, written after Jesus’ resurrection.
–Dwight Widaman | Metro Voice