Where Science and Faith Converge
Questions from Social Media

Why Is Atheism So Popular among Scientists?

By Hugh Ross - October 16, 2020

Question of the week: Why is atheism so popular in science today?

My answer: Only a small percentage of research scientists identify themselves as atheists. Of those that do, the majority—when pressed to define what they mean by atheism—turn out to be deists or agnostics. In my book, More Than a Theory, I cite large surveys about the theological beliefs of research scientists that were conducted in 1916 and 1996. Both showed that about 40% believe in God and an afterlife. Evidently, advancing scientific discoveries and scientific understanding has brought about no change in the theological beliefs of scientists. However, one reason why laypeople think atheism is so popular among scientists is that the very few scientists who are true atheists tend to be very vocal and get a lot of media attention. For this reason, we at Reasons to Believe are doing what we can to equip and train scientists who are Christians to be more public about their faith and more active in bringing their scientist peers to faith in Christ.

There is one significant correlation that applies not only to scientists but the general population. The percentage of the population that identifies themselves as atheists, agnostics, or nones (no religious affiliation) has been rising in direct proportion to the increasing percentage of the population that lives in large, highly urbanized cities. People who live in large, urbanized cities are much more cut off from wild birds and mammals than the rest of the population. As the book of Job explains, God designed birds and mammals to teach us humans several crucial spiritual lessons. People who are not adequately exposed to these animals will not experience these lessons. The lesson for us who are Christians is to reach out to our urbanized friends and associates and take them to wilderness areas where God’s book of nature can speak to them more directly and clearly.

  • Secularism
  • urbanization
  • surveys
  • nones
  • Mammals
  • deism
  • book of job
  • birds
  • atheism
  • agnostic
  • afterlife
  • Publications

About Reasons to Believe

RTB's mission is to spread the Christian Gospel by demonstrating that sound reason and scientific research—including the very latest discoveries—consistently support, rather than erode, confidence in the truth of the Bible and faith in the personal, transcendent God revealed in both Scripture and nature. Learn More »

Support Reasons to Believe

Your support helps more people find Christ through sharing how the latest scientific discoveries affirm our faith in the God of the Bible.

Donate Now

U.S. Mailing Address
818 S. Oak Park Rd.
Covina, CA 91724
  • P (855) 732-7667
  • P (626) 335-1480
  • Fax (626) 852-0178
Reasons to Believe logo

Reasons to Believe is a nonprofit organization designated as tax-exempt under Section 501(c)3 by the Internal Revenue Service. Donations are tax-deductible to the full extent of the law. Our tax ID is #33-0168048. All Transactions on our Web site are safe and secure.

Copyright 2020. Reasons to Believe. All rights reserved. Use of this website constitutes acceptance of our Privacy Policy.