Almost three-quarters of Americans who haven't darkened the door of a church in the past six months think it is ''full of hypocrites,'' and even more of them consider Christianity to be more about organized religion than about loving God and people, according to a new survey. Almost half those surveyed - 44 percent - agreed that ''Christians get on my nerves.''

But the survey of ''unchurched'' Americans by LifeWay Research also found that some 78 percent said they would be willing to listen to someone who wanted to tell them about his or her Christian beliefs. Researchers, affiliated with the Southern Baptists' LifeWay Christian Resources, defined ''unchurched'' as Christians who haven't attended church in six months as well as non-Christians such as Jews, Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists.

The findings echoed a previous study by The Barna Group that found the vast majority of young non-Christians view Christianity as anti-gay, judgmental and hypocritical.

The study was based on an overall sample of 1,402 adults who were interviewed by phone in 2007, including 900 ages 18-29 and 502 age 30 and older. It had a margin of error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points. - Religion News Service

Christians that get defensive over an article like this would point to scriptures that would demonstrate that this is a normal response from "the world". If anything, this would buttress the view of their correctness.

Jesus, in contrast, was always the favorite of the unchurched. It was around him that they felt most accepted and comfortable. At least, that's the way I read it.

In some sense, I think the reason for the inconsistency is that the title of Christian is so broad. Jerry Falwell, Mother Teresa, Rob Bell, Ann Coulter, Kenneth Copeland, George Bush, Desmond Tutu, Marcus Borg, the guy working the soup kitchen, and the dude yellin at people on the street corner all lay claim to the title Christian. Depending on your personal experience with Christians, it may be Mother Teresa who springs to mind when the topic of Christendom is brought up or it may be Ann Coulter.

Unfortunately, as the sour view of the survey shows, it is our most negative voices who have the floor.