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'Sorcery' and 'sorceries' most searched terms on Bible site in 2021

by Kelly Valencia
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Bible Gateway

The US site Bible Gateway has revealed the most searched terms and Bible verses on its site this year. 

Searches for the words 'sorcery' and 'sorceries' increased by 193 per cent this year, almost triple the figure in 2020. 

Speaking to Premier, senior director for Bible Gateway Stephen Smith, said he thinks the increased attention to those words is related to the interest in the Greek word pharmakeia. 

"Pharmakeia is where we get our word pharmacy from. The terms themselves are actually not related, but I think that heightened interest in this word has led to additional heightened interest in searches for sorcery. This is the biggest gainer over the past year."

Other most searched terms were "slow to anger, abounding in love" and "in my father's house are many rooms".

In comparison, terms such as "pestilence", "plague" and "disease" saw a decrease in searches from last year by 71 per cent. 

When it comes to Bible verses, some of the most popular continue to be John 3:16, followed by Jeremiah 29:11. However, Luke10:18 - ' I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven'- ranked higher than usual.

"This is related to the shoes in March that had the drop of blood in them," Smith said. 

Earlier this year, US singer Lil Nas X released the 'Satan Shoes', a pair of trainers that contained a drop of human blood in the sole as well as Luke 10:18 written on them. Smith said that news stories broadened the influx of people visiting the site, meaning many non-believers searched for that verse. 

"That entire increase was essentially from those two days," Smith added.

2 Chronicles 7:14 was the verse that had the biggest decrease in searches this year but this was expected as it had risen substantially last year. 

"Last year there was a big focus on repentance, and sort of seeing in some circles as Covid-19 as a divine judgment in some circles, and that has fallen away to some extent". 

Bible Gateway recorded nearly 3 million searches per day this year and continued to see an elevated usage from 2020 into 2021. 

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