Christianity statistics

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Below are some Christianity statistics.

Also, Christianity has had a positive effect on societies and there are a number of statistics which demonstrate this matter that are given below.

Global Christianity statistics

Hong Kong Christians at Gateway Camp. In 2005, there were four times as many non-Western World Christians as there were Western World Christians.[1]

First Things, a journal of religion and public life, reported in February 2015: "Christians were 34.5 percent of global population in 1900, 33.3 percent in 1970, 32.4 percent in 2000, and 33.4 percent today, with projections to 33.7 percent in 2025 and 36 percent in 2050.[2]

Pew Forum reports, "As of 2010, Christianity was by far the world’s largest religion, with an estimated 2.2 billion adherents, nearly a third (31%) of all 6.9 billion people on Earth."[3]

Christianity, in terms of its geographic distribution, is the most globally diverse religion.[4] (see: Global Christianity).

Christianity has recently seen explosive growth outside the Western World.[5] In 2000, there were twice as many non-Western Christians as Western Christians.[1] In 2005, there were four times as many non-Western Christians as there were Western World Christians.[1] There are now more non-Western missionaries than Western missionaries.[1] See also: Global scope of indigenous evangelical Christianity evangelism

Growth of Christianity statistics

Growth of global Christendom

In 2012, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (GCTS) reported that every day there are 800 less atheists per day, 1,100 less non-religious (agnostic) people per day and 83,000 more people professing to be Christians per day.[6][7]

Growth of evangelical Christianity

See also: Growth of evangelical Christianity

Evangelical Christians are often zealous when it comes to evangelism and evangelical Christianity has seen rapid growth in the world (see: Growth of evangelical Christianity).

Growth of Christianity in China

See also: Growth of Christianity in China

In front of the Great Hall of the People in Tiananmen Square in Beijing.

On November 1, 2014, an article in The Economist entitled Cracks in the atheist edifice declared:

Officials are untroubled by the clash between the city’s famously freewheeling capitalism and the Communist Party’s ideology, yet still see religion and its symbols as affronts to the party’s atheism...

Yang Fenggang of Purdue University, in Indiana, says the Christian church in China has grown by an average of 10% a year since 1980. He reckons that on current trends there will be 250m Christians by around 2030, making China’s Christian population the largest in the world. Mr. Yang says this speed of growth is similar to that seen in fourth-century Rome just before the conversion of Constantine, which paved the way for Christianity to become the religion of his empire.[8]

On April 19, 2014 The Telegraph published a story on the growth of Christianity in China which stated:

The number of Christians in Communist China is growing so steadily that it by 2030 it could have more churchgoers than America....

Officially, the People's Republic of China is an atheist country but that is changing fast as many of its 1.3 billion citizens seek meaning and spiritual comfort that neither communism nor capitalism seem to have supplied.

Christian congregations in particular have skyrocketed since churches began reopening when Chairman Mao's death in 1976 signalled the end of the Cultural Revolution.

Less than four decades later, some believe China is now poised to become not just the world's number one economy but also its most numerous Christian nation....

China's Protestant community, which had just one million members in 1949, has already overtaken those of countries more commonly associated with an evangelical boom. In 2010 there were more than 58 million Protestants in China compared to 40 million in Brazil and 36 million in South Africa, according to the Pew Research Centre's Forum on Religion and Public Life.

Prof Yang, a leading expert on religion in China, believes that number will swell to around 160 million by 2025. That would likely put China ahead even of the United States, which had around 159 million Protestants in 2010 but whose congregations are in decline.

By 2030, China's total Christian population, including Catholics, would exceed 247 million, placing it above Mexico, Brazil and the United States as the largest Christian congregation in the world, he predicted.

"Mao thought he could eliminate religion. He thought he had accomplished this," Prof Yang said. "It's ironic – they didn't. They actually failed completely."[9]

Phillip Jenkins' estimate of the future growth of Christianity

See: Phillip Jenkins' estimate of the future growth of Christianity

Bible statistics

The Bible has been translated into 518 languages and 2,798 languages have at least some portion of the Bible.[10]

Christianity and the Scientific Revolution statistic

See also: Christianity and science

Sociologist Rodney Stark investigated the individuals who made the most significant scientific contributions between 1543 and 1680 A.D., the time of the Scientific Revolution. In Stark's list of 52 top scientific contributors,[11] only one (Edmund Halley) was a skeptic and another (Paracelsus) was a pantheist. The other 50 were Christians, 30 of whom could be characterized as being devout Christians.[11] Stark believes that the Enlightenment was a ploy by "militant atheists" to claim credit for the rise of science.[12]

Christianity and hospitals statistics

See also: Atheist hospitals

St. Basil of Caesarea founded the first hospital. Christian hospitals subsequently spread quickly throughout both the East and the West.[13]

The First Council of Nicaea in 325 A.D. ordered the construction of a hospital for every cathedral town in the Roman Empire to care for the poor, sick, widows, and strangers. They were staffed and funded by religious orders and volunteers.[14]

Statistic related to the effectiveness of Christian prayer

The Christian apologist Gary Habermas wrote: "Double-blind prayer experiments: where people pray for others with terminal illness. Habermas admitted that most such experiments have not worked, but the three that he knows of that have indeed worked were cases of orthodox-Christians praying for the sick."[15]

Children of Christian missionaries and achievement statistic

CRU (formerly called Campus Crusade for Christ International), reported concerning Christian missionary families:[16]

Harry Conn, in Four Trojan Horses (pp. 17-18), makes reference to a study of the people listed in Who's Who of America. According to Conn, Who's Who in Who's Who showed that "it took 25,000 laboring families to produce one child that would be listed in Who's Who." That number dropped to 10,000 families of skilled craftsmen to produce one Who's Who. Among Baptist ministers the ratio was 6,000 in 1; Presbyterian ministers, 5,000 to 1; lawyers, 5,000 to 1; dentists, 2,500 to 1. Episcopal priests had the best... 1,200 to 1.

Oh. Except there was one more category. "For every seven Christian missionary families that sailed from the shores of the United States .... one of their children would be listed in Who's Who!"

...You want successful children? Perhaps the best you can do for them is take them to the mission field!.

Protestant work ethic statistics

See also: Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism and Atheism and sloth

Harvard University historian Niall Ferguson declared: "Through a mixture of hard work and thrift the Protestant societies of the North and West Atlantic achieved the most rapid economic growth in history."[17]

(Ferguson is an atheist.[18])

Protestant missionaries and economic development statistic

The article The Surprising Discovery About Those Colonialist, Proselytizing Missionaries published in Christianity Today notes:

In his fifth year of graduate school, Woodberry created a statistical model that could test the connection between missionary work and the health of nations. He and a few research assistants spent two years coding data and refining their methods. They hoped to compute the lasting effect of missionaries, on average, worldwide...

One morning, in a windowless, dusty computer lab lit by fluorescent bulbs, Woodberry ran the first big test. After he finished prepping the statistical program on his computer, he clicked "Enter" and then leaned forward to read the results.

"I was shocked," says Woodberry. "It was like an atomic bomb. The impact of missions on global democracy was huge. I kept adding variables to the model—factors that people had been studying and writing about for the past 40 years—and they all got wiped out. It was amazing. I knew, then, I was on to something really important."

Woodberry already had historical proof that missionaries had educated women and the poor, promoted widespread printing, led nationalist movements that empowered ordinary citizens, and fueled other key elements of democracy. Now the statistics were backing it up: Missionaries weren't just part of the picture. They were central to it...

Areas where Protestant missionaries had a significant presence in the past are on average more economically developed today, with comparatively better health, lower infant mortality, lower corruption, greater literacy, higher educational attainment (especially for women), and more robust membership in nongovernmental associations.

In short: Want a blossoming democracy today? The solution is simple—if you have a time machine: Send a 19th-century missionary."[19]

Protestant work ethic and China

According to Slate, "Protestant Christianity has been the fastest growing religion in China."[20] Evangelical Christianity is especially growing sharply in China.[21]

Hugh Whelchel's article The Protestant Work Ethic: Alive & Well…In China declares:

Christianity has exploded in China over the last twenty years. A 2011 report from the BBC conservatively estimated there were 60 million Christians in China. Small, primarily Protestant “house churches” are especially having a strong impact on the country.

This growth in religion has accompanied China’s rapid economic growth over the last twenty years. Now the world’s 2nd largest economy, China illustrates how even a limited amount of economic freedom has the power to lift millions of Chinese out of abject poverty and build one of the strongest economies in the world.

Ferguson suggests that China is starting to supplant the West, but is doing it by becoming more Western. China is booting up several of Ferguson’s “killer apps” – especially the Protestant Work Ethic.[22]

North Dakota, Christianity and low unemployment

See also: Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism

North Dakota has more churches per capita than any state in the United States plus has the highest percentage of people who attend church.[23][24]

Despite a large drop in oil prices and North Dakota having a large oil industry segment of their economy, in February 2016, the state unemployment rate was merely 2.9%.[25]

Statistic related to study on ex-homosexuals and church involvement

See also: Ex-homosexuals

In 1980 a study was published in the American Journal of Psychiatry and eleven men participated in this study. The study reported that eleven homosexual men became heterosexuals "without explicit treatment and/or long-term psychotherapy" through their participation in a Pentecostal church.[26]

Effects of the Welsh Revival on criminality and ill-behavior

Evan John Roberts was a leading figure of the Welsh Revival of 1904-1905.

See also: Religion and crime reduction and Irreligious prison population

Larry Brown in his paper entitled The Welsh Revival And Other Revivals Worldwide, 1900-1905 declared concerning the Welsh Revival of 1904-1905:

The impact of the Welsh Revival touched essentially everyaspect of Welsh society, with 100,000 throughout Walesprofessing faith. Demonstrating the permeating effects of this Revival, historian J. Edwin Orr, as recounted by Towns and Porter, noted:

Drunkenness was immediately cut in half, and many taverns went bankrupt. Crime was so diminished that judges were presented with white gloves signifying that there were no cases of murder, assault, rape or robbery or the like to consider. The police became unemployed in many districts. Stoppages occurred in coal mines, not due to unpleasantness between management and workers, but because so many foul-mouthed miners became converted and stopped using foul language that the horses which handled the coal trucks in the mines could no longer understand what was being said to them” (Towns and Porter, 33).[27]

Jeff Fenske wrote of the Welsh Revival of 1904-1905:

As revival fire spread across Wales in late 1904 and early 1905, although no official records were kept of the actual number converted, 150,000 is considered a very conservative estimate, during the first six months! People’s lives were transformed by the thousands. This was indeed, a sovereign move of God’s Holy Spirit!

Whole communities were turned upside down, and were radically changed from depravity to glorious goodness. The crime rate dropped, often to nothing. The police force reported that they had little more to do than supervise the coming and going of the people to the chapel prayer meetings, while magistrates turned up at courts to discover no cases to try. The alcohol trade was decimated, as people were caught up more by what happened in the local chapels than the local public houses and bars. Families experienced amazing renewal, where the money earning husband and father, the bread winner, had wasted away the income and sowed discord, but now under the moving power of the Holy Spirit, following the conversion to be a follower of Jesus Christ, he not only provided correctly for family needs, but was now with the family, rather than wasting his time, and wages, in the public houses of the village or town...

Public houses were now almost empty. Men and women who used to waste their money getting drunk were saving it, giving it to help their churches, buying clothes and food for their families. And not only drunkenness, but stealing and other offences grew less and less, so that often a magistrate came to court, and found there were no cases for him.

Men whose language had been filthy before, learnt to talk purely. It is related that not only did the colliers put in a better day’s work, but also that the pit ponies were so used to being cursed and sworn at, that they just couldn’t understand orders being given in kind, clean words! Yet, still the work output increased. The dark tunnels underground in the mines echoed with the sounds of prayer and hymns, instead of oaths and nasty jokes and gossip.

People who had been careless about paying their bills, or paying back money they had borrowed, paid up all they owed. People who had fallen out became friends again.[28]

Evangelical Christianity, liberal Christianity, irreligious and frequency of superstitious beliefs

The Wall Street Journal reported: "A comprehensive new study released by Baylor University yesterday, shows ...that the irreligious and the members of more liberal Protestant denominations, far from being resistant to superstition, tend to be much more likely to believe in the paranormal and in pseudoscience than evangelical Christians."[29]

See also: Irreligion and superstition

In September 2008, the Wall Street Journal reported:

The reality is that the New Atheist campaign, by discouraging religion, won't create a new group of intelligent, skeptical, enlightened beings. Far from it: It might actually encourage new levels of mass superstition. And that's not a conclusion to take on faith -- it's what the empirical data tell us.

"What Americans Really Believe," a comprehensive new study released by Baylor University yesterday, shows that traditional Christian religion greatly decreases belief in everything from the efficacy of palm readers to the usefulness of astrology. It also shows that the irreligious and the members of more liberal Protestant denominations, far from being resistant to superstition, tend to be much more likely to believe in the paranormal and in pseudoscience than evangelical Christians....

This is not a new finding. In his 1983 book "The Whys of a Philosophical Scrivener," skeptic and science writer Martin Gardner cited the decline of traditional religious belief among the better educated as one of the causes for an increase in pseudoscience, cults and superstition. He referenced a 1980 study published in the magazine Skeptical Inquirer that showed irreligious college students to be by far the most likely to embrace paranormal beliefs, while born-again Christian college students were the least likely.[30]

Conservative Christianity vs. liberal Christianity: Marital infidelity

See also: Liberal Christianity and marital infidelity

According to a 2007 study reported in the Journal of Family Issues, adherents of liberal Christianity are more likely to engage in marital infidelity than theologically conservative Christians holding other important factors equal ("strong liberal Protestants" who typically profess to believe in evolution have more marital infidelity than "strong holiness/pentecostals" and "strong other conservative Protestants" holding other factors equal. Some Baptists are Darwinists or hold to old earth creationism in recent years although many have not and the study does not differentiate between these types of Baptists)[31]

Pentecostalism statistics

Members of the Pentecostal Church of God in Lejunior, Kentucky praying for a girl in 1946.

The American sociologist and author Peter L. Berger introduced the concept of desecularization in 1999.[32][33] According to Berger, "One can say with some confidence that modern Pentecostalism must be the fastest growing religion in human history."[34]

Pentecostalism has experienced explosive growth for the past half-century. The membership is young and fast-growing. Combined, the Pentecostals (in separate denominations) and charismatics (inside other denominations) add up to very large numbers.

In 2011, a Pew Forum study of worldwide Christianity found that there were about 279 million classical Pentecostals, making 4 percent of the total world population and 12.8 percent of global Christendom Pentecostal.[35]

Evangelical Christianity and mainline churches statistics

According to Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary's Center for the Study of Global Christianity, which has made projections up to the year of 2050, the percentage of the global population that are evangelical Christians/Pentecostals is expected to increase.[36]

In the latter part of the 20th century and continuing in much of the world today, there has been a shrinking of liberal Christianity which supports evolutionism and a growth of conservative Christianity/religion which rejects evolutionism.[37]

Michael Brown wrote:

Several decades ago, church statistician and demographer David Barrett began to report the surprising news that around the world, the most rapidly growing faith was Spirit-empowered Christianity, marked by clear gospel preaching, belief in the literal truth of the Scriptures, and the reality of God’s presence. (The data were compiled in the prestigious “World Christian Encyclopedia,” published by Oxford University Press.)...

This is confirmed in the new Pew Forum report, which showed that evangelical Protestant churches in America grew by 2 million from 2007 to 2014 whereas the so-called mainline (liberal) Protestant churches declined by 5 million, meaning that evangelical Protestants now make up the largest religious group in the nation. (Although this is not part of the Pew Forum survey, my surmise is that the evangelical churches that are most Bible-based and make the most serious, grace-empowered demands on their congregants are, generally speaking, the ones that are growing rather than declining.)[38]

Growth of evangelical Christianity in Europe statistics

Growth of evangelical Christianity in the United Kingdom

Some 4.5million of the UK's foreign-born population claim to have a religious affiliation and more than half are Christian. Church attendance in Greater London grew by 16% between 2005 and 2012.[39] In addition, the latest immigrants to the UK as a whole mean British Christianity is becoming more charismatic and fundamentalist.[40]

Due to religious immigrants, many of whom are evangelical Christians, church attendance in Greater London grew by 16% between 2005 and 2012.[39] In 2013, it was reported that 52% of people who attended church in London attended evangelical churches.[39]

On December 14, 2009, the British newspaper The Telegraph reported:

According to the Mail Evangelical Christianity is on the rise.

Some 4.5million of the UK's foreign-born population claim to have a religious affiliation. Of these, around a quarter are Muslim while more than half are Christian – with Polish Catholics and African Pentecostals among the fastest-growing groups.

While traditional churchgoing is on the decline in the UK over the past decade, the latest immigrants mean Christianity is becoming more charismatic and fundamentalist.

'Perhaps the most significant change has been the growth of Pentecostal and charismatic Christianity within migrant populations, particularly those from Africa and Latin America,' the report found.

'In Lewisham, there are 65 Pentecostal churches serving the Nigerian community, and others serving the Congolese, Ghanaian and Ivorian communities.'

Professor Mike Kenny of IPPR said: 'The research shows that recent waves of inward migration have given a boost to some of the UK's established faith communities at a time when Britain's society and culture are generally more secular, and smaller numbers of the indigenous population are regularly attending churches.

'Recent migration trends are altering the faith map of the UK. Their biggest impact is being felt in some of our largest cities: London above all, where a rich mosaic of different faith communities has come into being.'

Evangelical Christianity might be heavily African-influenced but it’s also spreading among the natives as well.[40]

Growth of evangelical Christianity in Germany

On March 17, 2014, the news website Deutsche Well reported that evangelical Christianity has doubled in Germany in the last 10 years.[41]

Growth of French evangelical Protestant Christianity

French scholars say, evangelicalism is likely the fastest-growing religion in France – defying all stereotypes about one of Europe’s most secular nations. In 2011, The number of evangelical churches increased from 769 to 2,068 in 2011.[42]

On July 12, 2012, the Christian Science Monitor reported:

French scholars say, evangelicalism is likely the fastest-growing religion in France – defying all stereotypes about Europe’s most secular nation...

Daniel Liechti, vice-president of the French National Evangelical Council, found that since 1970, a new evangelical church has opened in France every 10 days. The number of churches increased from 769 to 2,068 last year.[42]

Christian internet evangelism statistics

See also: Internet evangelism

Network211

Network211 has reached people in over 200 countries and territories. As of June 22, 2015, their online ministry has reached over 16,727,000 people.[43]

Network211 is a world missionary outreach focused on global evangelism and discipleship via the Internet.[44]

Network211 currently has a project called Project 100Million.

Project 100Million is an evangelism and discipleship ministry of Network211. Their goal is to reach 100,000,000 people worldwide with the Gospel online.

Project 100Million is multilingual, ministering in English, Farsi, Vietnamese, Indonesian, Mandarin, Spanish, Filipino, American Sign Language and Easy English. Other languages are under development. Network211 has reached people in over 200 countries and territories.

As of June 22, 2015, their online ministry has reached over 16,727,000 people.[43]

Christianity vs. atheism statistics

See:

See also

Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Is Christianity taking over the planet?
  2. World Christianity by the Numbers by George Weigel, February 25, 2015
  3. The Future of World Religions: Population Growth Projections, 2010-2050, Pew Forum, April 2, 2015
  4. Globally the worldviews of atheism and non-religious (agnostic) are declining while global Christianity is exploding in adherents
  5. Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary - Status of Global Missions
  6. Cracks in the atheist edifice, The Economist, November 1, 2014
  7. China on course to become 'world's most Christian nation' within 15 years
  8. Bible translations
  9. 11.0 11.1 Williams, Alex,The biblical origins of science, Journal of Creation 18(2):49–52, August 2004.
  10. http://goliath.ecnext.com/coms2/gi_0199-3274629/False-conflict-Christianity-is-not.html
  11. The Christian origin of hospitals
  12. Hospitals - A historical perspective
  13. Christian Apologist: 10 Reasons for the Fall of Atheism by Gary Habermas
  14. http://www.missionfrontiers.org/issue/article/being-an-mk-has-advantages
  15. The Protestant Work Ethic: Alive & Well…In China By Hugh Whelchel on September 24, 2012
  16. Niall Ferguson on Belief
  17. Christianity Today, The Surprising Discovery About Those Colonialist, Proselytizing Missionaries, January 8, 2014
  18. When Will China Become the World’s Largest Christian Country?, Slate
  19. In China, a church-state showdown of biblical proportions
  20. The Protestant Work Ethic: Alive & Well…In China by Hugh Whelchel
  21. http://www.undercovertourist.com/united-states/north-dakota.html
  22. http://www.prairieplaces.org/grant_awards.cfm
  23. State unemployment statistics
  24. E.M. Pattison and M.L. Pattison, "'Ex-Gays': Religiously Mediated Change in Homosexuals," American Journal of Psychiatry, Vol. 137, pp. 1553-1562, 1980
  25. The Welsh Revival And Other Revivals Worldwide, 1900-1905
  26. Effects of the WELSH REVIVAL 1904-05 by Jeff Finske
  27. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122178219865054585.html
  28. Look Who's Irrational Now by Mollie Ziegler Hemingway, Wall Street Journal, September 19, 2008
  29. Are There Religious Variations in Marital Infidelity?.
  30. Journal of Church and State, Desecularization: A Conceptual Framework by Vyacheslav Karpov, 2010
  31. Peter L. Berger, “The Desecularization of the World: A Global Overview,” in The Desecularization of the World: Resurgent Religion and World Politics, ed. Peter L. Berger (Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1999)
  32. Pentecostalism – Protestant Ethic or Cargo Cult?, Peter Berger, July 29, 2010
  33. Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life (December 19, 2011,), Global Christianity: A Report on the Size and Distribution of the World's Christian Population, p. 67.
  34. Global adherents of the major religions/worldviews, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary's Center for the Study of Global Christianity
  35. Why conservative churches are still growing
  36. 39.0 39.1 39.2 London Churchgoing and Other News
  37. 40.0 40.1 I'm not surprised Evangelical Christianity is on the rise by Ed West, The Telegraph, December 14th, 2009
  38. Ghanaian pastor seeks to 're-Christianize' Germany
  39. 42.0 42.1 In a France suspicious of religion, evangelicalism's message strikes a chord
  40. 43.0 43.1 Network211 - our results
  41. Network211 - About us