Is your digital bible causing you to retain less?

According to a study that was published in the “Journal of Religion, Media, and Digital Culture people especially men are turning to bible apps, but the question we should be asking is this a good thing? While men especially are more likely to finish the bible app reading plan there seems to be a problem when done.

According to the study men would complete on average two more days worth of reading than women yet when finished they retained less. This study is the first ever to compare print reading with digital while examining the difference between men and women as well.

John Dyer who is the the author of the study was surprised at the finding noting it was unexpected.

In our technological age this could help us understand what is happening to the “comprehension factor” of many men. Dyer’s findings echo broader social patterns: Boys tend to prefer digital formats more than girls, and female readers consistently score better in comprehension.

However, Dyer’s research actually doesn’t narrowly focus on gender but seeks to understand the differences and habits between Bible reading in print versus digitally. For the study, Dyer enlisted participants from two non-denominational megachurches and one Southern Baptist church in the Dallas area.

He then had them read a book of the bible either in traditional paper print or digital format. “Digital users were nearly twice as likely to report feeling ‘confused’ with many indicating that they would like to ‘read it again’ or ‘study Jude more,’” he reported.

With one of the participants writing, “When reading on the phone I feel like I was less engaged than when reading a paper Bible. It felt a little more like skimming an email to get it done rather than really studying God’s word.

The study found that 66% of people would actually prefer a paper bible for long reading and 65% for in-depth study since it brings the greatest clarity, understanding, and comprehension. Yet 45% of participants admitted to using apps for devotionals, 38.7% for bible searches. Since most people find it more convenient to use a digital version at work or or when out it is becoming the preferred medium for people.

This new revelation could help to explain why biblical literacy and comprehension is plummeting across the nation. One thing is for sure it is time to dust off those bibles and turn the pages of the good book “Print Edition”

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