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Millennials are exiting the church at an alarming rate, with many Christians wondering if they will come back on their own or if shifts need to occur to bring them back to the church.

A new survey from the Cultural Research Center at Arizona Christian University found that while 57 percent of Millennials consider themselves Christians, 43 percent “don’t know, care or believe that God exists.”

The survey also found that only 48 percent of Millennials say one should “treat others as you want them to treat you,” compared to 53 percent of Gen Xers, 81 percent of Boomers and 90 percent of Builders.

In addition, 38 percent of Millennials cosign with the statement “you try to get even with people who have wronged you,” compared to 33 percent of Gen Xers, 12 percent of Boomers and 10 percent of Builders.

According to Barna, the shift in America’s spiritual landscape began almost 60 years ago, starting with progressive changes among Boomers. However, Millennials have aggressively shifted away from lifestyle values and core biblical views.

“Gen X and the Millennials have solidified dramatic changes in the nation’s central beliefs and lifestyles,” George Barna, CRC director of research, said. “The result is a culture in which core institutions, including churches and basic ways of life, are continually being radically defined.”

The survey found that Millennials are far more likely than other generations to be liberal regarding fiscal and social policies, consider premarital sex with someone expected to be their future spouse morally acceptable and champion liberal theology, among other things.

Barna said the survey results warn of a significant shift and challenge for the future of the Christian faith in our country.

“If Christian churches, pastors, schools and individuals believe that a biblical Christian faith is important – not just for themselves but also for our nation and the world beyond it – time is running out to aggressively and strategically act on that belief,” Catholic League president Bill Donohue cautioned. “Before those who vehemently disagree succeed in destroying the freedom and opportunity to preserve the ways of God.”

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