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Poll: 52 percent approve of God’s job performance
July 27th, 2011
11:58 AM ET

Poll: 52 percent approve of God’s job performance

By John Blake, CNN

(CNN) - If you think voters are in cranky mood over politics, a new poll suggests that some of the dissatisfaction may run deeper.

God’s job performance has trouble measuring up to many Americans' expectations, according to a poll by Public Policy Polling, a Democratic firm based in North Carolina.

Only 52 percent of Americans approve of God’s job performance, the survey found, though just 9 percent disapprove.

The polling question that prompted this curious response was, "If God exists, do you approve or disapprove of its performance?"

"When asked to evaluate God on some of the issues it is responsible for, voters give God its best rating on creating the universe, 71-5," the polling report said. "They also approve of its handling of the animal kingdom 56-11, and even its handling of natural disasters 50-13."

Dino Grandoni cited the poll in a blog for the  Atlantic Wire:

On the bright side for the Almighty's re-election chances, God is still more popular than House Speaker John Boehner and both Republicans and Democrats in Congress, all of whom polled at 33 percent in the same poll.

(snip)

Believers or not, it seems ridiculous for the public to categorically grade God like this, until you realize that it's pollsters who asked the questions in the first place

Public Policy Polling used automated telephone interviews to survey 928 American voters from July 15 to 17. The voters were represented by a mix of liberal, moderate and conservative voters. The poll's margin of error  was +/-3.2%.

- CNN Writer

Filed under: Belief • Faith • God • Polls • Uncategorized

soundoff (2,575 Responses)
  1. Unknown

    If 52% approve, and 9% disapprove, where's the other 39%?

    July 27, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
    • jayman419

      "If you believe in god, is he doing a good job?" Possible answers: Yes, no, I do not believe.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:35 pm |
    • Not Sure.....40%

      Following the links, sometimes helps.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:37 pm |
    • Not Sure.....40%

      Q7 If God exists, do you approve or disapprove of
      its performance?
      Approve 52%
      ..........................................................
      Disapprove 9%
      ......................................................
      Not sure 40%
      ..........................................................

      July 27, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
  2. David

    What kind of sick individuals would ever approve of a god who creates flesh eating bacteria, or who sends tsunamis which leave behind piles of bloated dead babies? Only religious delusion allows people to invent such an evil and hateful being, and then to convince themselves that it is the epitome of moral perfection.

    July 27, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
    • jayman419

      Big difference between "evil and hateful" and "largely indifferent". If you think about it, I bet most of your days don't involve any actual supernatural torture, so it's kind of hard to support the idea that god wants us all to suffer all the time.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:37 pm |
    • David

      If your god looks upon the suffering endured worldwide on a daily basis and is not utterly appalled by it, then your god is evil.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:49 pm |
    • Sam Winchester

      ALL my days involve some supernatural torture, so I am pretty mad about it.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:52 pm |
  3. Frogist

    OK People! That's my time! I'm off to Otakon for the weekend! Oyasuminasai! love ya!

    July 27, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  4. Sao

    Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. Gal. 6:7
    But he continued, "You are from below; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. John 8:23
    Ezekiel 18:26 If a righteous man turns from his righteousness and commits sin, he will die for it; because of the sin he has committed he will die.

    July 27, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  5. gdp

    This is just sad. Of course agnostics and atheists are going to give him a poor rating. To people who have faith in God (Jews, Christians, Muslims, etc.) this shouldn't matter. If I were to guess, I would imagine that it was probably about a 50% distribuiton of agnostic/atheists to believers. I would further surmise that 100% of the agnostics/atheists said He was doing a poor job.

    This shouldn't turn into a flame fest for the atheists of the world to make fun of other people for their faith. Live and let live. Just understand that to some people, this is an offensive question.

    July 27, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
    • Joe

      Why would agnostics and atheists blame God if they don't believe he exists? Or, correction; why would atheists? Agnostics are people inbetween religious and atheist that are just indecisive. You just proved yourself that you're one of those ignorant religious people that just assume it's the non-believers who don't approve of the efficiency of God's work. No, people who don't approve of what God has done are the believers themselves. People like you just try to justify their lives by saying they are faithful, but are no different from everyone else. Because you shift the blame onto others and automatically assume all the believers are some Saint that does not "sin" like a normal human being.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
    • Joe

      BTW, the manner of your speaking has offended me because the way you said make it sound like non-believers are villains. God and Jesus never taught people that sinners are evil or villains. He taught you to love and be good. Atheists will not give God a poor rating because they don't believe him, which also means they wouldn't waste time giving God a poor rating. I'm not religious whatsoever and I'll tell you this; I don't blame God at all. It's all OUR fault.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:41 pm |
  6. Jason

    I couldn't get through this thing without laughing out loud. The real funny part is that a large number of the God supporters are generally the folks that won't spare a dollar to the less fortunate. "Don't take my taxes!! I've worked hard my whole life. Plus, I prayed on Sundays!!" What they don't tell you is that they were given every opportunity to succeed, unlike those unlucky enough to be born into single-parent homes in violent neighborhoods with terrible schools. But keep pretending that you're doing God's work. Continue voting for politicians like John Boehner who would like to strip every social program we have going. It's like when Jesus had all that fish and bread and said, "Man, I'm going to make a sh!tload of fish sandwiches for myself!!"

    July 27, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
    • gdp

      You just have no idea what you're talking about. I came from a family that had never gone to college. I worked my way through without grants or scholarships, and ultimately graduated from professional school. Now, I'm being told that I have to work harder and take home less pay because someone else (who hasn't worked as hard in their life as I have) says I shouldn't make that much money. What right do they have to take it away from me? Have I been dreaming that we live in a capitalist society? Is this a nightmare that we have now become socialist, being forced to redistribute wealth? I've received to free government assistance because I depended on myself. Who gives to charities more than any other socioeconomic group? Who turns investments back into a community? Do you REALLY trust the government to do the right thing with your money? Have they managed the money they've been given appropriately so far?

      July 27, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
    • Joe

      Hey man, I understand the frustration you have... but you have no idea what you're talking about Jason. First of all, Christian society does PLENTY of charitable work. Not just Christians, Jewish and Muslims as well. In fact, instead of donating money, they actually GO to these places and set up missionaries. If the people there refuse to believe in God, they are still always welcomed for a place to call haven. I'm not religious AND I hate religious nutcases but don't slander a group of people that does more than you. Just because you donate money doesn't mean you're a good and generous person. Donating money is what people do when they don't want to waste time actually helping them out. When the BP oil spill happened, many people protested and said the execs of BP should be on death row. The people that REALLY were helpful and charitable are not the ones who donated money. They are the ones who meet these people in need face to face. Christians at least do that all the time. That's what evangelism means, and it's a significant part of their religion. Honestly, what do you think has more impact? Some arrogant person who justifies himself as a good person by donating a $1 a day? Or someone who sacrifices their personal and daily lifestyle to go help people in need face-to-face? I swear, I didn't want to be offensive but damn you are one dumb person.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:49 pm |
  7. ben10

    Did CNN really just ask a stupid question like that? Why in the hell would they ask such a childless and mindless question like that? What amazes me more is the fact that people actually answered these question, its not about "God" and his performance on us but about ourselves and how we lead our lives. We have no one to blame our misfortunes on but ourselves and the way life works. I am sure "God" doesn't control the government who is the real reason why we are living in such hard and depressing times. People wake up and open your eyes for once! And CNN please posts articles that are actually intellectual and tell us what is going around the world.

    July 27, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
    • Tom

      It's nice to know as a liberal minded scientific member of society that there are people at CNN with plenty of time on their hands in perhaps one of the darkest moments of World History, to be worried about God's approval rating. What would we do without your snarky stupid idiotic worthless jobs as messengers of the new world order of mediocrity?

      July 27, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
  8. steve19

    God created a beautiful world and gave us life. Along with that, He gave us another amazing gift – free will. He made it so we are not automatons .....we have the choice every day to do good or wrong ......and all of us do some of both. Omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, unchanging and eternal, He is love pefected and does ask for our approval or need it. Having given us free will, He does not force us to serve Him. Instead, He woos us with His Spirit, and as we reach out to Him in prayer and humility, He responds, with love and forgiveness for all, no matter who we are or what we have done.

    July 27, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
    • John

      You believe in a god who thought it was a good idea to give everyone free will (so we can make bad decisions), rather than make everyone loving, kind, generous, and perfect.

      If you were a god, which type of world would you have made? If you picked the obvious answer, then congratulations, you're more intelligent than the 'god' you believe in.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
    • Kevin

      you do realize the god you just descibed can not possible exist. many of the qualities you listed are mutually exclusive, which means they can not be shared by one thing. you can not be all know all power and everywhere, while loving perfectly and allow this kind of suffering.

      your delusion is maddening.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
  9. some guy

    sounds like we are all going too hell

    July 27, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  10. God Fearing Person

    Those who don't believe in God are pathetic... soon you will realize it once the end of this world comes! Can anybody make mountains? Sun, Stars, etc.?...ahhhh, right no one but only God. God is Great! and he created all things people! Wake up and human being was created not to just live, eat and die....main purpose is to SERVE HIM...remember, he gave people the right to choose righteousness or Evil...if you chose evil...you'll be cursed, righteousness, you'll be blessed. just read and belive in the bible...all things we are seeing now are written thousands or millions of years ago. This is the last days! Suffering, hardship, Wars, mankind knowledge expanding, weakedness, griddiness etc.

    July 27, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
    • TRUTH

      THOSE WHO DON'T BELIEVE WILL PERISH AND THEIR SOULS WILL BE LOST TO AN ETERNAL NIGHTMARE OF REDEMPTION THAT WILL NEVER COME

      July 27, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
    • some girl

      lol @ 'written millions of years ago'.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
    • Unknown

      Please, teach us more love and compassion....NOT.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
    • Normon

      Pathetic?
      If his main purpose for creating us "is to SERVE HIM," then giving us free will was a pretty stupid idea.
      If he gave us free will on purpose, then why does he expect us to server an being that, for all intents and purposes, doesn't exist?
      If he didn't give us free will on purpose, then he's not very good at creating, is he?

      "just read and belive in the bible"
      Why? It is full of inaccuracies and contradictions.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
    • Kevin

      whats really pathetic is being a willful slave to a master you can even be sure exists. NOW THAT is pathetic.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:44 pm |
    • Earthling

      Yay! More end-of-the-world predictions!

      Do idiots like you ever pay ANY attention to the real world? If you did, you might notice that about every other week some moron comes along with yet another doomsday prediction. Guess how many of them have been right? Take your time.

      July 27, 2011 at 8:20 pm |
    • Fred1

      OK, now prove your christian god is the one that did all that good stuff and not some other god?

      July 31, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
    • Fred1

      Truth: I'd rather laugh with the sinners than cry with the saints

      July 31, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
  11. buck

    the whole survey is stupid, without any merit and a waste of time and money. the country is in the Crapper and we take surveys rating gods performance. First of all if you dont believe in god then the whole thing is a joke, second of all If you do believe in God, then you wouldnt Rate his performance. Thank you for a complete waste of time and money.

    July 27, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
    • NOo..oON

      Yes, Buck. Thank you for this waste of time and money.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  12. martini paul

    Children who are failures often blame their parents. We have failed miserably. Why complain about dead babies in africa when we are the most obese major nation in the world? Why complain about cancer when we spend billions killing our fellow man? The fault dear Brutus lies not in our stars, or God, but in ourselves.. We may blame God but God is going to blame us. He has given us much. What have we done with it? We have much to answer for.

    July 27, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
    • Magic

      "The fault dear Brutus lies not in our stars, or God, but in ourselves."

      The same goes for the credit.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
    • John

      lol! Hilarious logic. You believe in an omnipotent, perfect god that is NOT responsible for the imperfection of 'his' creation. This is the essence of Christianity – not being responsible for the things you do. After all, you believe that the responsibility of your actions – your "sins" – can be wiped clean because you close your eyes, put your hands together, and say something in your head. Congratulations on finding the Internet and typing something.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
    • martini paul

      John: your own logic is rather odd. I believe I made it perfectly clear that we ARE responible for our actions. If you don't believe in God, that's fine by me. Yes, I ask forgiveness of my 'sins'. What do you do about yours?

      July 27, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
  13. James Brown

    The article was bad enough. But to read the comments and the moronic statements some make, it only got worse. Go ahead, believe what you want, believe all this started by happenstance and there is not a God. Believe that two molecules came together, made a spark followed by an explosion, then we evolved from a fish, or an ape, whichever or whatever. God IS real, you just have to want to see him. The truly ironic part is, some of you reading this are saying, you don't believe and won't ever see God. But, you will!

    July 27, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
  14. ivblackward

    "Only 52 percent of Americans approve of God’s job performance, the survey found, though just 9 percent disapprove."

    So, do the nine percent who disapprove think they could do a better job?

    July 27, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
    • NOo..oON

      No, they just have cancer.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:20 pm |
  15. Jason

    I'm more worried about how God rates us, especially the Hillbillies who claim they don't believe in Him lol

    July 27, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
    • NOo..oON

      Actually, I would think "hillbillies" would be more likely to believe than not.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:22 pm |
    • derp

      "the Hillbillies who claim they don't believe in Him"

      I think you have that backwards

      July 27, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
    • Charlie

      Hmmm... a hillbilly you call me? Does your god approve of insulting people like that?

      July 27, 2011 at 5:24 pm |
    • Kevin

      99% of Hillbilies are christian.

      you didn't think that through to much i see, must be a hillbillie

      July 27, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
  16. BlameGod?

    It is very disturbing seeing all these people scoffing and degrading God for their own sins. If any one of you had any concept of who God is you would be ashamed to even think such a thing. I am not trying to make anyone feel bad but why in the world would anyone think it was Gods fault. Your mother made you flesh, is it her fault you turned out badly, did she make your choices, choose your sin, cause you to have pride when you should have shame. Did she make you perfect, with perfect teeth with perfect disposition? She did not make a machine and neither did God, he made life and the grace for woman to give birth to new life. Praise and glory to God, the Father the Son Jesus Christ and the holy spirit forever and ever!

    July 27, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
    • hahaha

      "If any one of you had any concept of who God is" thousands have tried, if there even is one.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
    • The Bobinator

      > It is very disturbing seeing all these people scoffing and degrading God for their own sins.

      Actually, if you believe your God is all powerful and our creator, then free will is not possible. Knowing the future and making an individual to fulfil that future denies us free will.

      > If any one of you had any concept of who God is you would be ashamed to even think such a thing.

      I know what God is. At least, what we can perceive God as. God is a man made construction to explain things that we were unaware of. It's still being used.

      > I am not trying to make anyone feel bad but why in the world would anyone think it was Gods fault.

      Because like I said. If God knows all and sets the rules and actors in play knowing the result, then he is responsible for it all. Which he has to have done if you believe in the Christian God.

      > Your mother made you flesh, is it her fault you turned out badly, did she make your choices, choose your sin, cause you to have pride when you should have shame. Did she make you perfect, with perfect teeth with perfect disposition? She did not make a machine and neither did God, he made life and the grace for woman to give birth to new life. Praise and glory to God, the Father the Son Jesus Christ and the holy spirit forever and ever!

      No, my mother doesn't have the ability to dictate what I turn out into. My mother cannot control if I'm autistic or a sociopath or a normal person. The being that dicates that is God.

      If you read and think about your bible, God creates Adam and Eve. He makes gullible knowing that it will result in the creation of sin. Yet he still does it. God created sin.

      And if God created sin, then God is not always good. And if God is not always good, then your whole mythology falls down upon itself.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
    • Kevin

      i find it sad that you assume god is even real. can you prove it? didnt think so no one has in all of human history,.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:52 pm |
    • Fred1

      According to ledgend the christian god knew everything about everything including the future when he created the world. If it hasn't turned out the way he wanted it to he would have done something diferent in the first place. Yes, if he exists it's all his fault

      July 31, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
  17. Barry

    Byrd,

    The suffering chronicled in the book of Job is most likely a reflection of the suffering which Israel experienced, as a result of their being conquered and exiled by the Assyrians (8thcentury BCE) and bu the Babylonians (6th century BCE).

    Much of the Scriptures of Israel (the Old Testament) were influenced by this extremely critical event in their history. The prophets were either before, during or after the exile.

    Job’s horrific suffering was like that of the nation of Israel; for, as the northern kingdom (Israel) was taken into Assyrian captivity, the southern kingdom (Judah) was later taken into Babylonian captivity. This lasted seventy years.

    The warnings of the prophets (see: Jeremiah, Isaiah, Ezekiel) reflect these events, as do many of the Psalms.

    Job (and Israel) eventually learned what all of the faithful of God learn, that God is in control, and that without him we are merely dust.

    I hope this is helpful.

    July 27, 2011 at 5:15 pm |
    • The Bobinator

      When the story does not paint a favourable picture of my God, it's a metaphor. If it does, it's clearly a fact.

      Hilarious.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  18. chris fontenot

    This WHOLE BLOG represents what is wrong with this country..... The problem lies within the very people who are speaking here... What they don't realize is that it is their disbelief that fuels the negative consequences of the world. If you feel that he has "failed" you, you did not fully accept him. Only those who have truly gave into his will knows the power. What blows my mind is that people want all the worldly possessions, but don't realize that this is the best route to obtain them. If you beleve in his power, you are undefeated before you even begin.... That is the strength that can be possessed.... Sure, things won't always go your way, but it is when a person gives up on him, that is when you just got defeated. Don't question the plan. All interpretations of reason are easy to displace credit to god.... It is the faith driven that ultimately succeed. All the evidence toward there NOT being a god makes perfect sense.... FAITH is what differs believers from lost souls chasing false idols that they could possess IF ONLY THEY BELIEVED.... This is TRUTH, not fiction. To possess his power is to possess the world. Power seen in other forms are false.... They are real and powerful, but non-belivers are the fuel to this power... You ask why things are the way there are if there is a god??? Because 52% are allowing it to happen!!! Get it! Wake up, get saved, don't question!!! If the world would do this, problem solved!!

    July 27, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
    • NOo..oON

      The best way to keep someone enslaved is to convince them that they deserve it or did it themselves.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
    • Cosmos42

      Hey what kind of drugs should I take if I want to be as insane as you?

      July 27, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
    • Nickell

      Crazy religious people

      July 27, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
  19. Jim

    At some point, all will believe in God because all will see him. I think God's performance is 100%. It's mankind that has mucked it all up.

    July 27, 2011 at 5:11 pm |
    • Kevin

      Jim, Prove your claim that a god exists or shut the hell up about it.

      July 27, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
    • Pumbaa

      How do you know that it will not be a her? Or Thor, Odin , Isis. You might meet the Buddha instead of the traditional Jewish God. Nobody knows what happens to a person when he/she dies, maybe you are just dead, period.

      July 27, 2011 at 6:07 pm |
  20. BigN

    Lets all bow our heads and worship our ancient sky daddy

    July 27, 2011 at 5:09 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.