The Pew Research Center for the People & the Press released a new survey last week, focusing on people’s predictions for life in 2050. Among its findings is the following:

[T]he public is divided over whether Jesus Christ will return to earth by 2050. About four-in-ten (41%) expect Jesus Christ to return while slightly more (46%) say this will definitely or probably not happen. Opinions about the return of Jesus Christ are little changed from 1999 when 44% said it would definitely or probably happen.

The survey was conducted “among a national sample of 1,546 adults living in the continental United States, 18 years of age or older, from April 21-26, 2010.”  These adults were split into two groups, each receiving a slightly different survey form. Form 1 included the query about Jesus’ return, situated in a cluster of sub-questions about the likelihood of other events transpiring before 2050: another world war, global warming, the election of a female U.S. President, the emergence of China as the world’s premier superpower, the cloning of human beings, and the eradication of print newspapers, for example.  The 779 answers to those questions provided the data set for the above results, among others of potential interest.

The full report (titled “Public Sees a Future Full of Promise and Peril”) and questionnaire are available here. Information about survey methodology is available here.