In this analysis, the authors use Greeley's 'religion as poetry' model to frame an analysis of images of God and trust among the highly religious. Using the 2005 Baylor Religion Survey, the authors regress four ordinal measures of social trust on two images of God measures and a bank of religion and demographic controls. The authors find that having a loving image of God creates greater levels of trust in all four measures among the highly religious. They also find that having an image of God as angry creates less trust in all four measures of trust. Implications for theory and research on trust and civic engagement are discussed in the conclusion.
Mencken, F. Carson, Christopher D. Bader and Elizabeth Embry. 2009. "In God We Trust: Images of God and Trust in the United States among the Highly Religious." Sociological Perspectives 52: 23-38.
University of California Press