This blog is written by a Christian living in the Middle East. My desire is to discuss Islam and Christianity in ways that will be helpful for people of the other religion.
Justin Long on Religion Trends for 2016
Great information from Justin Long:
Religionists, 1.31%. The world is becoming more religious, not less.
Christians, 1.3% vs. Muslims, 1.8%. Both Christians and Muslims are gaining ground in the world, but Muslims are gaining ground faster. This is largely a function of faster net demographic growth rates in countries that have large Muslim populations; this in turn is caused partially by declines in mortality.
Hindus, 1.26%. The Hindu population is making gains worldwide, but not as fast as Christians or Muslims.
All of the remaining groups (except the very small Sikh population) are declining vs. global population.
Non-religionists, 0.3% – agnostics are growing at .36%, and atheists at 0.05%. Despite headline-grabbing trends in certain parts of the world (the West, mostly), the world as a whole is becoming progressively and massively less non-religious (and atheists in particular are in sharp decline).
While the population of much of the world will start to decline soon because of low TFR, there are exceptions. One of them is Pakistan, which will continue to (naturally) grow. The USA will grow as well, but from immigration. Same for some countries in Europe. The UK is one of those countries. Its population will continue to grow in the long run, not because women there have children (TFR of 1.9), but because of immigration.
Guess where a great deal of that immigration comes from...Yep. Pakistan. So while British women are having children at below-replacement levels, the fertile women of Pakistan will continue to procreate quite well, thank you. And rest assured, the UK will continue to welcome them in.
And that is how London will become Londonistan indeed.
Dr. Anthony Greenham of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary did a study of Palestinian MBB's back in 2004 entitled "Muslim Conversions to Christ: An Investigation of Palestinian Converts living in the Holy Land." He interviewed 22 MBB's (11 men and 11 women).
Greenham in Ch 5 provides two lists of categories explaining why Muslims convert:
Lesser Importance are
1) political Instability,
2) Rejection of Islam,
3) Christian Media,
4) Personal Crisis,
6) God’s Honor.
The categories of “Greater Prominance” are
1) Reading the Bible,
2) Role of Believers,
3) Truth of Jesus’ Message,
4) God’s Miraculous Involvement,
5) Person of Jesus.
Update on this: most of Ant Greenham's research and findings were published in an article in St Francis Magazine. Here is THE LINK.
Missionary Secrets 4: our churches don't know what to do with us...
by Abu Daoud
It's true. They send us money. They are normally happy to see us when we get back to our native country. They have good intentions. But in the end, they have no idea what to do with missionaries. It's mostly out of sight, out of mind. Which is not great. I personally love to hear from our churches. I don't mind answering their questions or e-mailing some recent prayer requests or pictures.
So here is some good advice which I got from an eNewsLetter send out by this agency on a regular basis. (You can sign up for it at their website if you like.)
Here is the section I liked, with some great advice on taking care of missionaries and keeping in touch with them:
Neal Pirolo wrote the best book on this subject, Serving as Senders Today: how to care for your missionaries as they prepare to go, are on the field, and return home. Here's a list to get you started, but to read more click on th…