Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Christianity taking over the planet?
WND/Virtueonline ^ | 2005 | WND/

Posted on 05/07/2005 8:05:03 AM PDT by churchillbuff

What is the fastest-growing religion on Earth?

Most news reports suggest it is Islam.

But a new book makes a compelling case it is a new, or, perhaps, old form of biblically inspired evangelical Christianity that is sweeping through places like China, Africa, India and Southeast Asia.

In "Megashift," author Jim Rutz coins a new phrase to define this fast-growing segment of the population. He calls them "core apostolics" - or "the new saints who are at the heart of the mushrooming kingdom of God."

Rutz makes the point that Christianity is overlooked as the fastest-growing faith in the world because most surveys look at the traditional Protestant denominations and the Roman Catholic Church while ignoring Christian believers who have no part of either.

He says there are 707 million "switched-on disciples" who fit into this new category and that this "church" is exploding in growth.

"The growing core of Christianity crosses theological lines and includes 707 million born-again people who are increasing by 8 percent a year," he says.

So fast is this group growing that, under current trends, according to Rutz, the entire world will be composed of such believers by the year 2032.

"There will be pockets of resistance and unforeseen breakthroughs," writes Rutz. "Still, at the rate we're growing now, to be comically precise, there would be more Christians than people by the autumn of 2032, about 8.2 billion."

According to the author, until 1960, Western evangelicals outnumbered non-Western evangelicals - mostly Latinos, blacks and Asians - by two to one. As of 2000, non-Western evangelicals outnumbered Westerners by four to one. He says by 2010, the ratio will be seven to one.

"There are now more missionaries sent from non-Western nations than Western nations," he writes.

This trend, says Rutz, has been missed by Westerners because the explosive growth is elsewhere.

Hundreds of millions of these Christians are simply not associated with the institutional churches at all. They meet in homes. They meet underground. They meet in caves. They meet, he says, in secret.

And what is driving this movement?

Miracles, he says.

"Megashift" attempts to document myriad healings and other powerful answers to the sincere prayers of this new category of believer, including, believe it or not, hundreds of dramatic cases of resurrections - not near-death experiences, but real resurrections of actual corpses.

"When I was a kid in Sunday school, I was really impressed that 3,000 people were saved on the Day of Pentecost," he writes. "I thought, 'Wow, that'll never happen again!"

But, Rutz says, it now happens around the globe every 25 minutes.

"By tomorrow, there will be 175,000 more Christians than there are today," he writes.

The essence of Rutz's book is about how Western Christians can tap into what he sees as a mighty work of God on Earth.

"Very few people realize the nature of life on Earth is going through a major change," he writes. "We are seeing a megashift in the basic direction of human history. Until our time, the ancient war between good and evil was hardly better than a stalemate. Now all has changed. The Creator whose epic story flows through the pages of Scripture has begun to dissolve the strongholds of evil. This new drama is being played out every hour around the globe, accompanied sometimes by mind-bending miracles."


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial
KEYWORDS: bookreview; christendom; christianity; clashofcivilizations; crusade; geopolitics; megashift; trends
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-100101-150151-200 ... 351-378 next last

1 posted on 05/07/2005 8:05:03 AM PDT by churchillbuff
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: churchillbuff

The Bible says that the gospel will be taught in every country.


2 posted on 05/07/2005 8:08:15 AM PDT by Brilliant
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: churchillbuff
I cannot vouch for the world, but my point of view is that we are in the middle of a strong revival in the United States. I also personally know a missionary who is vigorously working in Russia.

In Panama, and much of South and Central America, evangelical Christians are making strong gains.

3 posted on 05/07/2005 8:11:06 AM PDT by marktwain
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: churchillbuff

"Megashift" is just more regurgitated drivel like the "Purpose Driven" series. The real 'megashift' is the churning of memberships, who leave one congregation and join another, over simple differences such as vision and/or direction.


4 posted on 05/07/2005 8:13:37 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: churchillbuff

It's happening ... but a bit slowly.


5 posted on 05/07/2005 8:14:18 AM PDT by gobucks (http://oncampus.richmond.edu/academics/classics/students/Ribeiro/Laocoon.htm)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: churchillbuff
I have read Christianity, under the radar, is growing in China. Some Asian Christians have even, apparently, been considering becoming missionaries to North America.


This book was written a few years ago, and while I doubt Chinese Christians will be listening to Southern Gospel quartets or use the same kind of praise songs so popular in the West, I do believe the Holy Spirit will use them to make a positive impact on their culture.

6 posted on 05/07/2005 8:15:02 AM PDT by Recovering_Democrat (I'm so glad to no longer be associated with the Party of Dependence on Government!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: churchillbuff
And what is driving this movement?

Miracles, he says.

"Megashift" attempts to document myriad healings and other powerful answers to the sincere prayers of this new category of believer, including, believe it or not, hundreds of dramatic cases of resurrections - not near-death experiences, but real resurrections of actual corpses.

Praise the Lord ... I have seen a large number of non-Western missionary's that have even been working in this country, the good old U S of A!! And God bless them!!!

7 posted on 05/07/2005 8:15:03 AM PDT by AgThorn (Bush is my president, but he needs to protect our borders. FIRST, before any talk of "Amnesty.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: churchillbuff
Forgiveness, love, brotherhood, helping others... what's not to like?

If only we could remove the charlatans with their hands out (for your money).

8 posted on 05/07/2005 8:16:17 AM PDT by DTogo (U.S. out of the U.N. & U.N out of the U.S.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: marktwain
"... my point of view is that we are in the middle of a strong revival in the United States."

Can you cite some specifics, please? My point of view suggests the exact opposite -- there is a "Great Falling Away" by the true Church.

9 posted on 05/07/2005 8:16:39 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: churchillbuff
Jesus Saves!! You can't stop peoples thirst for Freedom, both politically and spiritually.

Pray for W and Our Troops

10 posted on 05/07/2005 8:16:43 AM PDT by bray (Pray for Iraq's Freedom from Mohammad)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: gobucks

God will accomplish His purpose.


11 posted on 05/07/2005 8:17:58 AM PDT by WVNan
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: marktwain
"but my point of view is that we are in the middle of a strong revival in the United States"

I've seen and visited some denominational church's and they're on fire for the Lord and the Holy Spirit. The revival IS happening, but majority of it is in the youth ministries!
12 posted on 05/07/2005 8:18:21 AM PDT by RoseofTexas
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: RoseofTexas

And I can see thousands of churches marching lockstep with the Rick Warrens of the world, trying to re-write the Gospel. Many will probably follow him right over the cliff, and drink the Kool-Aid.


13 posted on 05/07/2005 8:20:35 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale

Just out of curiosity - what is your definition of "the true Church"?


14 posted on 05/07/2005 8:22:55 AM PDT by mollynme (cogito, ergo freepum)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: churchillbuff

POSTED HERE earlier:

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-religion/1396661/posts

in slightly different form, evidently.


15 posted on 05/07/2005 8:23:17 AM PDT by Quix (--AVOID MERE FORM OF GODLINESS; SEEK HIS FACE. WALK IN HIS SPIRIT.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale

It's such a blessing to know that particularly overseas

you are just incredibly wrong.


16 posted on 05/07/2005 8:24:14 AM PDT by Quix (--AVOID MERE FORM OF GODLINESS; SEEK HIS FACE. WALK IN HIS SPIRIT.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: Recovering_Democrat

Actually, they do use some of the same praise songs--translated into Chinese.

But they also have some wonderful ones of their own as well as from Taiwan and Singapore.


17 posted on 05/07/2005 8:25:45 AM PDT by Quix (--AVOID MERE FORM OF GODLINESS; SEEK HIS FACE. WALK IN HIS SPIRIT.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: mollynme

I define it as the Church that follows Scripture, not what one man may have written recently in his best seller.


18 posted on 05/07/2005 8:26:33 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale
It is simply my personal viewpoint as someone who is not a church member. I see a growth in church numbers, particularly of "mere Christian" type churches such as espoused by that great Christian apologist, C.S. Lewis. I seem to meet more people who profess their Christianity proudly than I did a decade ago.

While this is not scientific or poll driven, I have learned to trust my intuition on issues such as this. On most, it has proved to be correct.

19 posted on 05/07/2005 8:26:33 AM PDT by marktwain
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: Brilliant

"The Bible says that the gospel will be taught in every country."

And it was, in the first generation after Christ's life on earth. Colossians 1:23: ". . . This is the gospel you have heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant. . ."

There is historical evidence of first century Christianity in the Orient.


20 posted on 05/07/2005 8:27:15 AM PDT by Jedidah
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Quix

There is a movement, but if it is not according to the Word, it is a false movement. Be very careful of following every "hot spot" because many times they have been false doctrine.


21 posted on 05/07/2005 8:28:07 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale

I thought that's where you were coming from . . .

I guess for some . . . the only true church is the

CHURCH OF THE RELIGIOUS LEADERS WHOM JESUS . . .


22 posted on 05/07/2005 8:29:05 AM PDT by Quix (--AVOID MERE FORM OF GODLINESS; SEEK HIS FACE. WALK IN HIS SPIRIT.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: marktwain

See my reply #29


23 posted on 05/07/2005 8:29:22 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale

I actually observe Rick Warren to be a LOT more Scriptural in his statements and life than I observe you to be.


24 posted on 05/07/2005 8:30:23 AM PDT by Quix (--AVOID MERE FORM OF GODLINESS; SEEK HIS FACE. WALK IN HIS SPIRIT.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale

Oops...I meant #21. I sincerely hope you are correct, but I fear that many of the current "revivals" are not the real thing.


25 posted on 05/07/2005 8:30:56 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: RoseofTexas
I've seen and visited some denominational church's and they're on fire for the Lord and the Holy Spirit. The revival IS happening, but majority of it is in the youth ministries!


You are right on.
26 posted on 05/07/2005 8:30:58 AM PDT by americanmother (Thessalonians chapter 2)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: Quix

In that case, I will pray for you that God will open your eyes to the truth.


27 posted on 05/07/2005 8:31:38 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: churchillbuff
So fast is this group growing that, under current trends, according to Rutz, the entire world will be composed of such believers by the year 2032.

And my niece will be 16 feet tall!

28 posted on 05/07/2005 8:32:11 AM PDT by monkey
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale

I don't think that the problem with most churches is too many temporary hot spots.

The problem with a vast proportion of even Pentecostal churches is that the nearest hot spot is many miles away.


29 posted on 05/07/2005 8:33:02 AM PDT by Quix (--AVOID MERE FORM OF GODLINESS; SEEK HIS FACE. WALK IN HIS SPIRIT.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | View Replies]

To: Quix

Rick Warren may be "Scriptural" but he uses 15 different translations in his book to get the meaning he wants.


30 posted on 05/07/2005 8:33:21 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: Quix

I actually agree with this statement.


31 posted on 05/07/2005 8:34:04 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale

Well, I for one will rejoice in this report! Enough anti-christian drivel has been spewed from the Christian haters and I welcome this most refreshing report...God bless those courageous souls who are willing to go to those countries to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ!! NOT just talk the walk but actually walk the talk!!


32 posted on 05/07/2005 8:34:17 AM PDT by RoseofTexas
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale

I'm a little skeptical that a REAL REVIVAL would be convincing to you if it hit you upside the face with a Resurrection. Your criteria/screen seems to be exceedingly and narrowly TommyDale vs Scripture or Holy Spirit. imho, of course and from where I sit.


33 posted on 05/07/2005 8:35:15 AM PDT by Quix (--AVOID MERE FORM OF GODLINESS; SEEK HIS FACE. WALK IN HIS SPIRIT.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale

Given that He does that daily, perhaps I should pray the same for you.


34 posted on 05/07/2005 8:36:12 AM PDT by Quix (--AVOID MERE FORM OF GODLINESS; SEEK HIS FACE. WALK IN HIS SPIRIT.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 27 | View Replies]

To: RoseofTexas

I am all in favor of preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ! But that Gospel needs to be accurately taught. Truth is far more important than sheer numbers, and many of these new converts are never going to be strongly grounded in the Word, because far too many churches are NOT TEACHING THE WORD! Those who ARE teaching the Word are to be commended, those who teach false doctrine will face quite a penalty.


35 posted on 05/07/2005 8:37:16 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

To: Quix

I guess I am saying that I would really like someone to show me where this revival is occurring? I can show where many people claim it, but there is no fruit.


36 posted on 05/07/2005 8:38:46 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 33 | View Replies]

To: Quix

I would appreciate that -- I always seek the Truth.


37 posted on 05/07/2005 8:43:34 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 34 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale

Rutz did a good job of showing you where:

AFRICA, SOUTH AMERICA, ASIA, RUSSIA and some amazing stuff even in Moslem countries.

You don't seem inclined to believe it.

Praise God that there can be some agreement! LOL.


38 posted on 05/07/2005 8:44:14 AM PDT by Quix (--AVOID MERE FORM OF GODLINESS; SEEK HIS FACE. WALK IN HIS SPIRIT.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 36 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale

Hmmmmm? My Pastor always said, "Never worry about a wild fire in the church - there will always be a wet blanket to put it out.

And .. "Purpose Driven" isn't a series - it's one book. The series is called: "Left Behind".

And .. I don't worry about people coming or going in a church. That's nothing new and sometimes those who leave your church are really a blessing in disguise.

GOD is preparing the church for the final harvest. People can either get in .. get out .. or get run over.


39 posted on 05/07/2005 8:44:45 AM PDT by CyberAnt (President Bush: "America is the greatest nation on the face of the earth")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale

Tommydale - I stand with you. Too many "Christians" are embracing feel-good near truth rather than Truth, having failed to test it in light of Scripture. Seeker sensitive, purpose driven drivel appeals to the sinful flesh, but honors not the Creator God who sent the Lamb to die for those who answer His call.

Check out www.MenofHonorMinistry.org for some interesting reading on this topic.


40 posted on 05/07/2005 8:47:10 AM PDT by Manfred the Wonder Dawg (In all things give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 36 | View Replies]

To: churchillbuff

Teaching love and forgiveness will always win out over teaching hatred and murder and suicide-for-sex.


41 posted on 05/07/2005 8:50:59 AM PDT by tkathy (Tyranny breeds terrorism. Freedom breeds peace.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: CyberAnt

"And .. "Purpose Driven" isn't a series - it's one book."

Obviously you haven't read "Purpose Driven Church"...and it is not just a book, it is a philosophy that many churches are blindly following, looking for the easy way to attract new members. The sermons from Warren's website for pastors who are lazy and merely download sermons at http://www.pastors.com
are watered down and soft peddled.


42 posted on 05/07/2005 8:55:44 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 39 | View Replies]

To: CyberAnt
"People can either get in .. get out .. or get run over."

Now isn't THAT a loving attitude? You failed to attribute that famous quote to Rod Parsley.

43 posted on 05/07/2005 8:57:15 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 39 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale

Well, he's only two behind the KJV which has 17 translations. Which of the 17 do you use?


44 posted on 05/07/2005 8:57:30 AM PDT by norge
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

To: Manfred the Wonder Dawg

Thank you. My "purpose" in life is to try to enlighten those who are being led down this destructive path.


45 posted on 05/07/2005 8:59:23 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 40 | View Replies]

To: Manfred the Wonder Dawg

Amen!


46 posted on 05/07/2005 8:59:25 AM PDT by old school
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 40 | View Replies]

To: norge

That 15 translations INCLUDES the King James Version, so does that mean that Warren needed 31 translation to achieve his goal of twisting the Scriptures?


47 posted on 05/07/2005 9:00:46 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 44 | View Replies]

To: old school; Manfred the Wonder Dawg

I think my reply #33 where I said, "there is no fruit" seems to be the one item where there is no argument. I plan on using that from now on, especially in our local church where this "purpose drivel" has torn the congregation apart, just as it has in many others.


48 posted on 05/07/2005 9:08:13 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 46 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale

What specifically are you saying? How is it watered down? I haven't read the book so I don't know. I've heard praise and criticism, but I would really like to know specifically what you are talking about. Where's the problem exactly?


49 posted on 05/07/2005 9:08:54 AM PDT by The Ghost of FReepers Past (Legislatures are so outdated. If you want real political victory, take your issue to court.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 47 | View Replies]

To: TommyDale

make that #36...


50 posted on 05/07/2005 9:09:29 AM PDT by TommyDale
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 48 | View Replies]


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-100101-150151-200 ... 351-378 next last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson