Changed in a day

Have we seen a large population “transformed in a day” in recent history?
There are no countries that were under 5% Christian in 2005, and over 5% Christian in 2015.
The World Christian Database tells me there are only 6 countries that were “under 5% Christian in 1970, and over 5% Christian in 2015” (30 year change). Three of these were church growth stories, and three are simply overseas foreign workers:

  • Bahrain – from 2.7% to 13%, this is nearly all expat Christian (overseas foreign workers)
  • China – from 0.1% to 8.9%, an amazing story of church growth
  • Myanmar – 4.9% to 7.9%, another story of church growth
  • Qatar – 3.6% to 9.4%, mostly overseas foreign workers
  • Sudan – 3.1% to 5%, church growth
  • UAE – 4% to 12%, again, overseas foreign workers.

There were, by contrast, 43 changed in a century: under 5% in 1900, over 5% in 2015. Most of these were dramatically so (e.g. under 5% in 1900, over 60% in 2015):

  • Angola
  • Bahrain
  • Benin
  • Brunei
  • Burkina Faso
  • Burundi
  • Cameroon
  • Central African Republic
  • Chad
  • China
  • Congo
  • Congo DR
  • Ivory Coast
  • Ghana
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • Hong Kong
  • Indonesia
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kenya
  • Kuwait
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Malawi
  • Malaysia
  • Mozambique
  • Myanmar
  • Nigeria
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Qatar
  • Rwanda
  • Sao Tome & Principe
  • Senegal
  • Sierra Leone
  • Singapore
  • S Korea
  • S Sudan
  • Swaziland
  • Taiwan
  • Tanzania
  • Togo
  • UAE
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Sustained growth over decades is important to see national transformation. Countries that were less than 1% Christian in 1900 now widely have the Gospel. Persistence and multiplicative growth are key.


1 COMMENT

  1. Neill Mims says:

    We could use more workers… But as import is the ones already out there: engaging the right groups, understanding and implementing effective missiology, working hard to be “stars in the universe as (they) hold out the word of life”. (Phil 2:15)

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