New Study Shows Hope for Gen Z: More Young Adults Say They’ve Been Transformed by the Bible

American Bible Society’s State of the Bible 2024 report shows an increase in Scripture engagement among Gen Z adults

American Bible Society today released the first chapter of their 14th annual State of the Bible report, which highlights cultural trends in the U.S. regarding spirituality and Scripture engagement. Today’s release focuses on the effects of Bible reading among various demographic groups, including several year-over-year trends. This first chapter of State of the Bible 2024 is now available to download at

“Increasingly, the Bible must compete for our attention in an ever-busier world. The State of the Bible survey bears this out as we see Scripture engagement decreasing over the last few years, especially in younger generations,” said John Farquhar Plake, PhD, American Bible Society’s Chief Program Officer and editor-in-chief of the State of the Bible series. “Yet our youngest adults show signs of interest in the Bible, curiosity about it, and transformative interaction with it. Last year, 50% of Gen Z adults (ages 18–27) agreed that the message of the Bible has transformed their lives. This year, that number rose to 54%. If this trend continues, we have good reason for hope.”

State of the Bible findings come from a nationally representative survey performed for American Bible Society by NORC at the University of Chicago, using their AmeriSpeak panel. The data came from 2,506 online interviews with American adults in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

Key findings analyzed in Chapter 1: The Bible in America Today

  • There are more Bible Disengaged Americans than ever. The State of the Bible research team combines metrics on frequency of Bible interaction, centrality of the Bible in one’s relationships with God and others, and the Bible’s impact on decision-making. This yields a score that identifies a respondent as Scripture Engaged, Bible Disengaged, or in the Movable Middle. This past year saw 4% of the total population—more than 10 million people—slide from the middle to the least engaged category. Now 57% of Americans are Bible Disengaged—the highest number in the 14-year history of this survey (pages 6–7).
  • Once again, Black Americans lead the way in Scripture Engagement. In the past year, the Scripture Engagement of Black Americans increased slightly to 28%. This is higher by far than the score for white Americans, which dropped slightly to 16%. Black Christians are also far ahead of other demographics in measures of spiritual vitality and church attendance, providing a strong example that other Christians can follow (pages 8–9).
  • More Christians are thriving in their faith, but more Christians are ailing, too. In the last two years, State of the Bible has employed the Spiritual Vitality Gauge (owned by Renovo), which asks a series of questions on beliefs, spiritual practices, and how Christians put their faith in action. The results divide people into four categories: Ailing, Unhealthy, Healthy, and Thriving. The 2024 survey saw a modest increase among Christians who are Thriving (from 19% to 21%). However, there was an even greater increase among those who are Ailing (21% to 28%). While some grew stronger in their faith during the past year, even more got weaker—an important detail as we consider the overall spiritual health of Christians in the U.S. (pages 12–13).

Between May and December 2024, American Bible Society will release eight new chapters in the State of the Bible story, including research on technology, neighboring, coping with loneliness, and philanthropy.

To download the first chapter of State of the Bible 2024, visit

*For descriptions on how Scripture engagement was measured and reported, please see page 21 of the eBook available for download at

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