COVID vaccine: Evangelicals are unconvinced

COVID vaccine: Evangelicals are unconvinced

COVID vaccine: Evangelicals are unconvinced

While evangelical leaders are conflicted on the subject of the COVID-19 vaccine, research shows that evangelical Christians are the least likely religious group in the U.S. to get it.

According to the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI), nearly a quarter of white evangelicals say they will not get vaccinated. Jewish American are the most likely (85%) to be vaccinated.

Alex McFarland, an apologist and co-host of the "Exploring the Word" radio program, says evangelicals no longer trust the conflicting and ever-changing messages and mandates from Democrats and liberals.

"The unleashing of the virus, the handling of the pandemic, and the release of vaccine is known to be largely political, largely an opportunity, a trial run for Marxism," McFarland relays.

He says many evangelicals see the past year-and-a-half's mask mandates, lockdowns, and restrictions on churches as the means of progressive leftists to undermine personal liberties and the Constitution.

Other evangelical leaders, however, disagree. Pastor Robert Jeffress of First Baptist Dallas, for example, says his research shows the vaccines are safe and effective.

"People who take the vaccine are vastly more likely to escape hospitalization and death with COVID," says Jeffress. "Those are the facts."

He claims conspiracy theories and wild rumors are making fools of some evangelicals.

"This idea that the shot contains the mark of the beast or that we don't need a vaccine; we've been vaccinated by the blood of Christ and that will protect us -- that is absolute foolishness," Pastor Jeffress submits.

He says getting the vaccine is the loving thing to do.

"I think we have a responsibility not to say, 'My body, my choice' like the pro-abortion lobby says," Jeffress contends. "We ought to say, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'"

According to the PRRI findings, religion appears to play a role in determining whether or not Americans choose to get vaccinated against COVID-19, with almost one in five (19%) of refusers saying a faith-based approach would make them more likely to change their minds.