In fact, when Pew mapped these views on morality again national wealth, it found that people in rich countries are less likely to equate faith with ethics than people in poorer countries, with two exceptions: America and China. Countries with low atheism and high strong belief tend to be Catholic societies, especially in the developing world, plus the United States, Israel, and Orthodox Cyprus.". When asked if they believe in a God "who concerns himself with every human being personally," 92 percent of people from The Philippines said they did, as compared to just 24 percent of people in Japan and 68 percent of Americans. Sixty-one percent of Americans said they know God exists, while three percent identified themselves as nonbelievers. The report, titled "Beliefs about God across Time and Countries," analyzes 30 countries based on surveys from the International Social Survey Programme conducted as far back as 1991 and as recently as 2008. Submit a letter to the editor or write to [email protected]. Emma Green. Often, when these Christians return to Japan, they see themselves as "catalysts for change" in their homeland. Japanese people who travel to the United States or Australia are more likely to become Christians while abroad, Chuman says, because they are removed from their culture. To enjoy our website, you'll need to enable JavaScript in your web browser. The survey's findings do not include Middle Eastern countries where a Muslim majority exists. Between 2011 and 2013, more than 40,000 people in 40 countries were asked to answer this question. Here's what the world looks like, according to what people think about the connection between faith and ethics: Is it necessary to believe in God to be moral and have good values? A Map of God's Countries. But some trends stick out. Chuman says the biggest hindrance to Christianity in Japan is that it is seen primarily as a "Western religion," but there are other cultural factors as well. Those surveyed were asked a number of questions to help researchers measure their collective belief in God. Take the variation among Middle Eastern nations, for example. Among Americans, 81 percent say they have always believed in God, compared to just 37 percent in Great Britain, 25 percent in Japan and 13 percent in former East Germany. That's why the question of belief is such a fascinating frame for understanding worldwide religious trends: It offers insight into how people think about morality—not just whether they go to church. "While there is a modest, general shift away from belief in God, there is enormous variation across countries in the level of believers, atheists, and intermediate groups," the report states. Smith indicates in his analysis that "countries with high atheism (and low strong belief) tend to be ex-Socialist states and countries in northwest Europe. They have a belief in a lot of different types of deities," Richard Chuman, executive director of the Japanese Evangelical Missionary Society (JEMS), told The Christian Post on Monday. Smith indicates in his analysis that "countries with high atheism (and low strong belief) tend to be ex-Socialist states and countries in northwest Europe. Among all the nations mentioned in the report, atheism is highest in former East Germany, where 52 percent of people don't believe in God. The graph below shows religious affiliation in these three countries; the big chunks of baby blue represents Islam, red refers to Christianity, and the green (barely visible) captures those who are unaffiliated. Many Japanese churches are very traditional, some would say behind the times, and they often adhere to firm denominational divides instead of assisting another in reaching their nation. I don't believe in God. Meanwhile, less than a fifth of people in France, Spain, and Great Britain agreed. A recently released report from the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago shows which countries have the most, and the least, belief in God by population percentage. Some of the more recently successful churches are those that are less traditional and work toward appealing to the nation's youth. But the response in Lebanon, which is roughly 150 miles north of Egypt and 50 miles northwest of Jordan, was wildly different: 30 percent of people said God doesn't have to be part of morality. Some of the results aren't surprising: Almost everyone surveyed in Pakistan, Ghana, and Indonesia said that belief in God is necessary to be a moral person, which matches the high levels of religious affiliation in those countries. Do you want award-winning journalism with a Christian worldview, delivered to your inbox? The places where people think faith is necessary to be a good person. Join over 250,000 others to get the top stories curated daily, plus special offers! "Japanese people actually are spiritual people. All Rights Last week, the Pew Research Center released the findings of a survey that asked a single question: Is it necessary to believe in God in order to be a moral person? They were also asked how their belief has changed during their lifetime, and whether or not they believed in a God "who concerns himself with every human being personally.". Population by Religion: Egypt, Jordan, and Lebanon. READ: WOULD YOU WANT AN ATHEIST FOR A NEIGHBOR? Which Country Believes in God the Most, Least? Pew found similar results in Egypt and Jordan, where roughly 95 percent of people agreed that belief is a necessary element of morality. Please click here to learn how. Reserved. First, they asked a question to determine whether those surveyed were atheists, agnostics, deists, waivers (those who believe in God only some of the time), weak believers (those who believe but have doubts) or strong believers. In Japan, only nine percent of the Japanese people said they don't believe in God, yet only four percent said they know God exists – the lowest out of all the countries surveyed. “Beliefs About God Across Time And Countries,” conducted by the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago, asked the following question to determine the nature of belief or unbelief in God: Please indicate which statement comes closest to expressing what you believe about God: 1. The places where people think faith is necessary to be a good person. The data also reveals subtle cultural divides among countries that are often lumped together. 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