As a Presbyterian pastor, I’m often approached by people who are on a search for truth, and as I attempt to help them, I draw on my religious tradition, sacred Scriptures and theological training. Unfortunately, more and more people are taking their quest directly to the Internet, surfing for religious as well as political insights.
I’m convinced that the Christian faith is becoming more like Wikipedia and less like Encyclopedia Britannica. Instead of time-tested religious insights, people are accepting “what others are saying.”
A generation ago, people turned to trusted authorities such as newspapers and mainline churches to get information. But trust in such institutions has fallen over the past 30 years, eroding the relationship between Americans and a number of traditional sources of trust. A poll called the General Social Survey has asked people whether they have “a great deal of confidence” in social institutions, and their answers reveal a clear decline.