It found that 1 in 5 Americans continues to read the Bible at least four times a week but an equal percentage doubt the Bible's relevance

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(CBS News) NEW YORK - A new poll finds a sharp increase in the number of Americans who consider the Bible merely the teachings of men rather than the word of God.

The fourth annual State of the Bible survey was conducted just over two months ago by the Barna Group for the American Bible Society.

It found that while about one in five Americans continues to read the Bible at least four times a week and view it as divinely inspired, an equal percentage doubt the Bible's relevance and authority. That's almost twice the percentage of those who were skeptical of the Bible in 2011.

The survey found the greatest increase in indifference toward the Bible was among Americans between the ages of 18 and 29.

Spokesman Geof Morin said the American Bible Society hopes to reach more of that generation through their cellphones with daily verses and Bible studies.

Society President Roy Peterson said he hopes more Americans will turn to the Bible to "make sense of life" and reverse what many see as the nation's "moral decline."

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