Almost half of Americans said the Bible should influence laws in the United States, while more than a quarter believed that the Bible should be given priority over the will of the people.
According to a poll by the Pew Research Center, 49% of Americans said the Bible should have at least “some” influence on U.S. laws.
49% of Americans said the Bible should have at least ‘some’ influence on U.S. laws. —Pew Research Center
Broken down by religion, 68% of Christians, 76% of Protestants, 51% of Catholics, including 21% of those unaffiliated, expressed that the Bible should have some influence on laws in the country.
When it comes to giving priority when there is a conflict between the Bible and the will of the people, 28% of Americans believed that the Bible should prevail, while 19% said it should be the will of the people.
The survey noted that two religious groups gave more importance to the Bible’s influence on US laws even if that meant overstepping on the will of Americans. More than half, or 68%, of white evangelical Protestants, and 42% of Christians said the Bible should have more influence on US laws.
In addition to faith, age affected how the participants answered the survey. Older Americans were more likely to side with having the Bible as an influence—61% of the 50-64 age group, and 64% of those 65 years old and above.
Some Americans today may question if the Bible really was a heavy influence for America’s Founding Fathers.
Daniel L. Dreisbach, author of Reading the Bible with the Founding Fathers, believes that the Bible was used in drafting the US Constitution, noting that “the Bible was the most authoritative, accessible, and familiar book in eighteenth-century America.”
Meantime, a study from the University of Houston found that 94% of the quotes from the founding fathers were Bible-based, according to Virginia-based newspaper, Daily Press. The first US president, George Washington, said, “It is impossible to rightly govern…without God and the Bible.”