Almost half of Americans see coronavirus as ‘wake-up call’ from God: poll
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 2, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — Almost half of Americans see the coronavirus pandemic as a “wake-up call” from God “to turn back to faith,” and one third see it as the “last days” as foretold in the Bible, according to a national poll.
Moreover, Christians and non-Christians alike are turning to the Bible and religion as the crisis continues, it found.
“That may be the most important silver lining in this crisis so far,” says Joel Rosenberg, whose organization, the Joshua Fund, commissioned the survey.
“Americans in near full lockdown are anxious, and understandably so. Yet millions are turning to God, the Bible, and Christian sermons for answers, some of them for the first time,” he told the Washington Examiner.
The Joshua Fund is an Israel-based evangelical Christian charitable and educational organization Rosenberg and his wife Lynn created to “mobilize Christians to bless Israel and her neighbors in the name of Jesus.”
Their survey, conducted by McLaughlin & Associates, was part of a larger national poll of 1,000 “likely” American voters with a diversity of religious beliefs, according to a Joshua Fund report.
It found that 44.3 percent of respondents said the coronavirus crisis is a “wake-up call for us to turn back to faith in God” and a “sign of coming judgment,” or both.
According to Joshua Fund posted results, those who agreed:
- 42% of Jewish Americans
- 25.4% of self-identified “secular” Americans
- 39.3% of single people (compared to 49% of married people)
- 54% of military household
- 51.7% of Hispanic-Americans
- 63.6% of African-Americans
- 40.3% of whites
- 26.3% of Asian-Americans
- 41.8% of young people, age 18–29
- 46.6% of people age 30–40
- 42.8% of people age 41–55
- 50.9% of people age 56–65
- 39.6% of people over 65
Moreover, 29 percent of respondents “said they believe that this crisis indicates that ‘We are living in what the Bible calls the ‘last days.’”
According to the Washington Examiner, those who agreed with the “last days” prediction were:
- 30% of Jewish Americans
- 30% of Democrats
- 39% of Republicans
- 40% of African-Americans
- 50% of Hispanics
One fifth, or 22 percent, of respondents who self-identified as non-Christian said they have more interest in God and spiritual matters because of the crisis. That figure rose to 40 percent for respondents who identified as Christian.
The coronavirus pandemic and attendant massive societal upheaval and uncertainty, as well as threat of imminent death, are “causing them to start reading the Bible and listen to Bible teaching and Christian sermons online even though they usually don’t, search online to learn more about Bible prophecy and God’s plan for the future of mankind, and have more spiritual conversations with family and friends,” the Joshua Fund reported.
Rosenberg is a bestselling author of fiction and nonfiction books that center on Middle East politics and is described by the Washington Examiner as “best known for writing about worst-case scenarios and pandemics.”
Echoing the findings of the Joshua Fund survey, a Pew Research Center poll of 11,537 U.S. adults conducted between March 19 and 24, 2020 also found that Americans say they are turning to God in the face of the Wuhan flu pandemic.
“More than half of all U.S. adults (55%) say they have prayed for an end to the spread of coronavirus,” reported Pew Research.
“Large majorities of Americans who pray daily (86%) and of U.S. Christians (73%) have taken to prayer during the outbreak — but so have some who say they seldom or never pray and people who say they do not belong to any religion (15% and 24%, respectively),” it reported.
Pew Research found that 59 percent of Americans who normally attend religious services at least once or twice a month have “scaled back their attendance most (59%) now say they have scaled back their attendance because of the coronavirus — in many cases, presumably because churches and other houses of worship have canceled services.”
However, “this does not mean they have disengaged from collective worship entirely: A similar share (57%) reports having watched religious services online or on TV instead of attending in person. Together, four-in-ten regular worshippers appear to have replaced in-person attendance with virtual worship (saying that they have been attending less often but watching online instead),” Pew Research stated.
Meanwhile, prominent Catholic clergy have stated they believe that the Wuhan flu is a “wake-up” from God.
Notably, German cardinal Paul Josef Cordes and Bishop Athanasius Schneider described the pandemic as a chastisement.
Cordes, former president of the Pontifical Council Cor Unum, wrote in an article in the German-language edition of Catholic News Agency March 20 that “God’s Word also clearly states that life contrary to God can lead to illness,” as reported by LifeSite’s Martin Bürger.
Schneider, auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Mary Most Holy in Astana, Kazakhstan, called the coronavirus pandemic “a divine intervention to chastise and purify the sinful world and also the Church.”