Survey: Many Americans Confuse Scripture for Superhero Mantras

Superheroes can teach us moral lessons in the battle between good and evil, but heroes of faith offer timeless truths in line with God's Word. That's why it's somehwat troublesome that so many Americans are confusing Captain America's messages of triumph with quotes from the Bible.

According to an American Bible Society Survey, 63 percent of U.S. adults incorrectly attributed a 2 Corinthians 4:8"We often suffer, but we are never crushed. Even when we don't know what to do, we never give up"—to civil rights activist Martin Luther King Jr., former President George W. Bush or comic book hero Captain America rather than the Bible.

The survey, which coincides with the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and the release of The Freedom Bible also reveals:

  • Despite significant security measures taken since Sept. 11, only 9 percent of Americans feel safer today than they did prior to Sept. 11. Thirty-six percent felt safer prior to the attacks of Sept. 11 than they do today.
  • Only 4 percent of Americans rely most on professional counseling to help deal with trauma. Four times as many (16 percent) rely most on the Bible.
  • Despite living in a predominantly Christian nation, 82 percent of Americans who have dealt with trauma rely most on sources other than the Bible to cope, including 6 percent of whom say they do not rely on anything.

"Though 10 years have passed since the attacks on the U.S., many of us vividly recall the images and emotions of that day," says Geof Morin, chief communications officer at American Bible Society. "In the aftermath of 9/11, we at American Bible Society saw firsthand the power of the Bible to help people deal with unfathomable trauma."

Headquartered in Manhattan, American Bible Society was on the scene on 9/11 and in the days and weeks following the attacks to minister to first responders and the families of those missing or killed. Morin says 9/11 forced Americans to choose between being prisoner of the trauma of that terrible day and finding the hope and freedom to move forward. For thousands of Americans, he adds, the comfort offered through the Bible allowed them to choose freedom.

"The Bible—not politicians, comic book heroes or civil rights activists—was the first to speak out about dealing with trauma and gaining freedom," agrees Commissioner William Roberts, national commander for The Salvation Army, a collaborator on The Freedom Bible project.

The Freedom Bible highlights stories of how the Bible has helped people to overcome trauma. Not a new translation, The Freedom Bible is the first to highlight more than 3,500 verses that refer to various aspects of freedom, including from fear, from suffering, from loss, from anger, from guilt and more.

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