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If you haven't already heard of SBNR, you will. It's one more way that man – created to be in fellowship with God – insists on worshiping a "god" of his own making.
SBNR is an acronym for Spiritual But Not Religious. According to Robert Fuller, author of Spiritual, But Not Religious, "It is likely that perhaps one in every five [Americans] … could describe themselves in this way…. Both [spiritual and religious] connote belief in a Higher Power of some kind. Both also imply a desire to connect, or enter into a more intense relationship, with this Higher Power. And, finally, both connote interest in rituals, practices, and daily moral behaviors that foster such a connection or relationship."
The major problem is that SBNR people are not connecting with the one true God. In fact, many – if not most of them – are connecting with gods of their own making. In other words, idols.
Fuller continues with this revealing comment: "A group of social scientists studied 346 people representing a wide range of religious backgrounds in an attempt to clarify what is implied when individuals describe themselves as 'spiritual, but not religious.' Religiousness, they found, was associated with higher levels of interest in church attendance and commitment to orthodox beliefs. Spirituality, in contrast, was associated with higher levels of interest in mysticism, experimentation with unorthodox beliefs and practices, and negative feelings toward both clergy and churches."
Why are so many turning away from organized religion and becoming SBNR? While some may have had negative experiences with churches, Creation Moments believes that SBNR is the symptom rather than the disease. The basic problem is that many of these people are doing what ancient Israel did when they built altars on high places to worship false gods. As Romans 1:19-21 makes clear, God has revealed Himself to man in the things He has made, but man has rejected his Creator. Though SBNR people know there is a God, they prefer to create a god in their own image rather than worship the One who created them.
So if you know people who say they're "spiritual but not religious," help them see that the "old time religion" is far better than new age foolishness.