A more foundational consideration is the selection of items that constitute the BWV. For instance, why is sharing faith the only behavioral obligation on the BWV list, as opposed to say compassionate interaction with others? The latter has more frequent and consistent Biblical support and would likely result in more sincere interaction, while the former could more easily correlate to an offensive preoccupation with the conversion of others. I'm not arguing that Christians don't have this obligation, but I question whether it is more foundational to a worldview shaped by the Bible than some other obligations. I would have similar questions about the BWV items about the reality of Satan and the sinlessness of Jesus, not because they aren't "Biblical" but because they don't seem as foundational, frequent or pervasive in the Bible itself as say... the sinfulness of human beings or the reality of angels for instance. I might also ask questions about the BWV's association of "truth" with "accuracy" (this is derived from Barna's book Think Like Jesus) but that is for the next post.
One other correlate is crucial to aligning the lists from the BWV and unchristian data. David Kinnaman spoke at a conference at Messiah College (my alma mater and current employer) this past summer. I found him refreshing and winsome. I will say more about his presentation in the next post about the demographic gap and young adults. Kinnaman revealed one piece of data that I have not found anywhere else: He told the audience that 60% of Christians with a BWV also would support a federal amendment declaring Christianity the official religion of the United States!! I think I can safely say that this could be considered a contribution to the "too political" perception of non-Christians in unchristian. The question is whether this makes them (in my opinion) unchristian (supporting a kind of power-grab that seems very contra-Jesus) or un-American (rejecting a fundamental item of the First Amendment).
Since only 19% of those Barna described as "born-again Christians" had a BWV, and in another Barna release, only half of Protestant pastors had a BWV, the BWV clearly cannot be held responsible for the perceptions cited in unchristian, unless Christians with a BWV have a massively disproportionate influence on the general perception of all Christians. We certainly can't blame the Bible, since (it seems to me) the Barna BWV is an odd set of priorities Biblically speaking. What seems possible is: since significantly more pastors do have a BWV, they may be doing a better job at communicating an obligation to disapprove than inculcating the particular Barna BWV.
In my next post I will consider the generation gap in the BWV and the "truth" factor.