Survey: 1 In 4 Americans Believe God Decides Outcome of Sporting Events

Quarterback Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks celebrates following the 2015 NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers at CenturyLink Field on January 18, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images North America)
Quarterback Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks celebrates following the 2015 NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers at CenturyLink Field on January 18, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images North America)

About one in four Americans believe that the outcome of sporting events is up to God, according to a new survey released just ahead of the start of the Super Bowl next week.

The survey, conducted by the Public Religion Research Institute and the Religion News Service showed that 26 per cent of Americans, and 27 per cent of those who describe themselves as sports fans, believe God plays a role in determining which team wins a sporting event.

The majority of Americans (71 per cent, and 69 per cent of sports fans) disagree, and a quarter of those surveyed also said that they were more likely be watching football that going to church.

However, a majority of Americans (53 per cent) believe God rewards athletes who have a faith by giving them good health and success, and among sports fans this figure is slightly higher (56 per cent).

Protestants from an ethnic minority are the most likely to believe that God determines the outcome of a sports game, with 45 per cent saying that God plays a role.

The same group are also the most likely to both attend church and watch football on a Sunday.

Among other Christian groups the number who believe God has a hand in deciding the outcome of sports events was slightly lower, with 32 per cent of evangelical Protestants and 31 per cent of Catholic supporting this idea.

Only 19 per cent of white mainline Protestants agree, as well as 9 per cent of those who describe themselves as religiously unaffiliated.

The results were collected from telephone interviews with just over 1,000 adult Americans in January.

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SOURCE: Christian Today
Lucinda Borkett-Jones

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