The March of History: Christian Decline at its Ground Zero.

I’ve admitted here before no one can predict the future with certainty.  That said, there are some things we know about history.

One is many different gods have been worshipped, perhaps thousands.  Each, except the current ones, has disappeared from human minds.  If this continues , the current gods will disappear and be replaced by new ones.

Currently, we seem to be living in a time of the ascendancy of the Islam version of the “God of Abraham” and the descendancy of the other, Christian.  One can’t say these trends will continue, but they are trends.

We see Christianity sliding off the radar in the lands where it started, those of the Middle East.  Political and military events are chasing Christians out.   The drop in Christian numbers is dramatic.

Europe, where the religion gained its Western toehold, is also slipping.  Instead of being chased out it is simply disappearing and is not being replaced.

This brings us to North and South America.  In the U. S. numbers have topped off and polling shows young people leaving organized versions.  In South America, some countries that were Catholic have become majority pentecostal, a different kind of change.

The Christian fundmentalist reaction to changes it does not like is to admonish the faithful to do two things, pray and quote scripture.  I can’t say for certain, but this seems like the same thing as giving up.

My favorite metaphor is that trying to stop change is like putting toothpicks in front of a bulldozer.

http://www.christianpost.com/news/are-christians-an-endangered-species-in-their-ancestral-land-86403/

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About Jon Lindgren

I am a former President of the Red River Freethinkers in Fargo, ND, a retired NDSU economics professor and was Mayor of Fargo for 16 years.
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39 Responses to The March of History: Christian Decline at its Ground Zero.

  1. entech says:

    You all say Jon is terrible and maliciously attacking Christianity, all he is actually doing is asking questions.
    If you want to see the real deal read the article, and see the places where declaring for Jesus is blasphemy, and death for blasphemy is not uncommon.

    • Stanta says:

      Entech, it isn’t news that the “Religion of Peace” is finishing what it started 1300 years ago. It is also no news to us that Jon is pretty gleeful about it and doesn’t condemn the killing of innocents. I am still waiting for the President to condemn the violence. Notice the one place they are safe?

      • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

        Stan 2:05 “..and doesn’t condemn the killing of innocents.”

        The blog was about the fact that it is happening. If I got into the morals of the ethnic cleansing that’s happening in the middle east, I’d have to ask what happens to atheists? I noticed you did not mention that.

      • entech says:

        I will condemn it for you. The Koran is probably a reasonable book and guide, there are people that take it and misinterpret it and decide they Know the mind of God and what he wants, because of this many, many innocents have been slaughtered.

        Who are the “they” you are talking about as only being safe in one place? and where is that place?

        Jon has a point, they (the Muslims) are anti the people of the book, how do you expect others to be treated, Hindus, atheists etc. beneath consideration.

        Not everything has been gentle tolerance from the followers of the prince of peace either, all that means is that they are both wrong.

    • entech says:

      Thanks Stan – see also
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Claims_to_be_the_fastest-growing_religion

      I note some strange results Deists up by 717%, even Wicca is growing at 143%.
      Shouldn’t quote statistics :)

      • Stanta says:

        Entech, at least I do link to where mine are coming from, not just ” I read somewhere” :)

        Funny thing about statistics though. For instance, just pulling numbers out of a hat for demonstration purposes, if you have 1.5 billion members of a group and it is up 1% that is up 15,000,000. But another group is 500,000 and they are up 700% you have 3,500,000 members. The numbers of the first group is still much larger then the other.

        Entech, on your first post you said Jon was just asking questions, and I was just answering it. When you are actively being attacked, you have two choices when you are the minority, leave or die.

        Jon, that is why I have a problem with people who are kiberal here in the US supporting the Muslim regimes who either are looking the other way or actively attacking the non-Muslims. I think I have linked more then once to the executions of homosexuals in Saudi Arabia and Iran happening RIGHT NOW, but we always here what the Christians did hundreds of years ago.

        • Henry says:

          Santa: “linked more then once to the executions of homosexuals in Saudi Arabia and Iran”

          Where is the hue an cry on this human rights violation?? All the usual suspects are silent. They can’t condemn them there moslems.

          • Avatar of Dustin White Dustin White says:

            Or maybe you just don’t want to hear the condemnation?

            I’m sure Jon doesn’t support the action of individuals who use religion to harm others (and he is pretty clear on this). I am openly opposed to various Muslims who want to spread hate and intolerance.

            It seems to me that you simply ignore what doesn’t agree with your world view.

          • Henry says:

            Dusty: “It seems to me that you simply ignore what doesn’t agree with your world view.”

            That statement would represent you well. Have a good evening.

  2. Wanna B Sure says:

    This subject of the decline of Christianity in Israel isn’t as clean and simple as it may appear. I first shared this several months ago. First one must ask; Who are the Christians? What ethenic groups live in Israel? Generally, the Jews are not Christians. Indeed, many are non-observent, cultural, or Zionist. The majority of the historical Christians are/were Palistinians. Since the 50′s, the Palestinian Christians have been squezed from all sides. First, obviously by the Muslum population, second, by the expansion/confiscation of property by the Israeli government, and the support/encouragement of the expansion of Zionism by the American Christian Zionists . I personally know of Palestenians in and around Nazareth that owned much of the land around there. They farmed, and owned factories. Most of them were Christians. Almost all of them have been forced out, not so much by Muslum strategy, but by Israel’s policy. As I said, the Christians, (Palestinians) have been slowly forced/ intimidated out by both sides, and the situation has been encouraged by the Zionists. One of those who left told me of a TV news report of Palestinians throwing rocks at the Jewish faction. He said he was throwing rocks not so much from a Palestinian standpoint, but from a Christian Palestinian viewpoint. His extended family had been there for many generations. They were almost all Christians. People seem to think that Palestinians are all Muslum. Not so whatever historically, but the ratio today is tilting towards all Muslum, due to the Christians being forced/intimidated out of there. I was told by these former Christian citizens of the area, that before the establishment of the state of Israel the Muslums and the Christians, (both Palestinians) got along quite well, and worked together in spite of their differences. What happened later was Zionism, and the radicalization of the Muslums as a large result. Way to complex an issue to present simply in a blog designed to gloat over the decline of Christianity in the region.

    • entech says:

      Almost equal population, enough land, half each simple. Unfortunately the two main sides say, yes but my “My God” gave those few square yards to me and my people for eternity, there is only place really to worship God but someone built a Mosque on it, can’t move my mosque Mohammad flew to heaven from there.
      Both sides are wrong and I think God should personally intervene and fix it, there is supposed to be some precedent for this.

      • Wanna B Sure says:

        “Both sides are wrong”, and the 3rd party ( Christians) are in the middle .Either left or leaving.

        • entech says:

          They all emigrated to Rome about 1600 years ago.

          • Stanta says:

            Even you know better, most Christians in Rome were Romans or Jews already living there when Paul started his ministry, and he wasn’t even the first. He found churches already started.

      • Wanna B Sure says:

        Did I say the Christians were/are Palestinian? Due to their precarious position, (neither Muslum or Jew, they have little political influence on their side.

        • entech says:

          they have little political influence on their side.
          But just see them go when they do.

          • Wanna B Sure says:

            Just what is your pissy point? All I pointed out was Jon’s blog is primarily about “Christian Decline at its Ground Zero”. (The title). A large cause is due to what I described in my 3:25. Jon said some of the same, but omited the squeezing out of the Christians by both Muslums((( AND))) the Jews, (all types). I see no decline of the faith due to loss of faith. More of a loss of ‘PEOPLE OF FAITH”, due to loss of land, jobs, and viability of a community of faith . Your 5:09 is irrelevant to the topic at hand, as is your 3:47.

          • Wanna B Sure says:

            Google–”Why Christians are leaving occupied Palestine”. (Mondoweiss.net). Scroll down to other related sites.

          • Wanna B Sure says:

            Search also—”The Palestinian Christians betrayed, persecuted, sacrificed” at Phoenicia.org.

  3. Henry says:

    Jon: “Currently, we seem to be living in a time of the ascendancy of the Islam version of the “God of Abraham””

    The moslems are given a pass. Too many U.S. presidential apologies. Too much focus on making moslem countries democracies. Instability has been groomed.

    http://atlasshrugs2000.typepad.com/atlas_shrugs/2012/12/new-army-manual-orders-soldiers-not-to-criticize-taliban-pedophilia-anything-related-to-islam-or-adv.html

  4. buzz marick says:

    personally I am curious in hearing what Jon’s beliefs are being he is getting closer to the big dirt nap. whats to come.I’m not trying to be mean spirited,just curious.

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      buzz 4:34 “what Jon’s beliefs are being he is getting closer to the big dirt nap.”

      Perhaps the most frequently asked question of nonbelievers, along with, “Where do you get your morals from if not from the Bible?”

      Of course, every human being is ticking off the days until the “dirt nap”, so my age is really not relevant. I, like every other person, religious or not, will return to the circumstances that existed before I was born. I have no complaints about being “dead” before I was born so have none contemplating the same thing after I’ve been alive.

      How about yourself? How do you see your own death?

  5. Jon can pick and choose his references but he truly lives in his own bubble.
    There is vibrant Christianity abroad….some denominations that call themselves “Christian”are in decline— primarily because they have rejected God’s word and substituted thoughts from the worst source of all…humans.
    Jeremiah 17:9 is a very old part of the Word of God but it surely tells the truth about human beings.

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      Buffalogal 5:24 “Jon can pick and choose his references but he truly lives in his own bubble.”

      Agreed. Perhaps, however, we all live in our own bubbles. The one thing we can all step out of our bubbles and see clearly is this: (1.)There is not one god, only, that is worshipped around the world. (2.)The gods that have been worshipped by massive numbers of people in the past are no longer worshipped.

      If there were only one god, it would be a lot easier to conclude something tangible exists. But, when there are so many, and they come and go, an appealing conclusion in none of them exist or have ever existed. Now, maybe there are several gods, and, maybe these actual tangible gods come and then later leavde are replaced with new tangible gods. There is no evidence for any of them, but maybe there will be some day. Until that evidence appears, I’m happy to stay in my skeptical bubble.

  6. Michael Ross says:

    ” I can’t say for certain, but this seems like the same thing as giving up.”

    Doubtless some are giving up. Christianity has been around 2000 year, and, though the Bible is still the bestseller of all time, it doesn’t seem to have stopped any wars. One has to wonder when American Christians are the ones that are screaming the loudest for another war. People want answers and all we have to offer, seemingly, is more bloodshed in the name of the “Prince of Peace”. I fully understand the world rejecting the Christian faith but also fully believe:

    “Of the increase of His government and peace there shall be no end” (Isaiah 9:7)

  7. buzz marick says:

    Jon 2:32 I have been close to death at least 3 different times that i am aware of(in my estimation and belief) and belong to a faith based organization not affiliated with Religion per se. I have come to believe that each of us has much more control,power, over our destiny,and ONLY OUR OWN destiny due to the benovelence of a higher Power which I may or may not understand. I have peace of mind and acceptance of life on life’s terms and hopeful of the next phase of MY development.Have a Great Day Jon.

  8. Avatar of Dustin White Dustin White says:

    So, I think a good basic point is made, but I do disagree with some of it. The idea that Islam is overtaking Christianity or the like really isn’t quite true. I’ve traced this idea back, and from what I can tell is that it was started by some conservative Muslim leaders. And it is true that in some places, Islam is growing faster.

    However, with the increase of Christianity in China, as well as other Asian countries, Christianity, by sheer number of new adherents, still is the fastest growing religion (percentage wise, no. But that is because a smaller religion can double or even triple by adding fewer numbers of new adherents. So statistics, in this particular case, just aren’t very usable).

    But Islam is a quickly growing religion, and I think that’s great. The main problem is that people are just so ignorant when it comes to the religion as a whole and base their ideas on it on news reports of a extremely small minority of people.

    The point I would like to make though Jon is that even if Islam would overtake Christianity, the Abrahamic God (which has had an extremely long history) would still continue to go on as well. And really, when one thinks about it, not many gods have disappeared (even the Greco-Roman and Egyptian pantheons are seeing a rebirth. Which is a little ridiculous as well as they were dead religions but oh well). But there are still a variety of religions that have existed for thousands of years.

    I do get the point you’re making though, and I think it is a viable point. I just like presenting the other side as well, which doesn’t diminish anything, but adds to it.

    In the United States too, the numbers haven’t dropped too much, but as you said, affiliation with an organized religion or denomination has. So it is more like a change in how one defines themselves in terms, but not really that much of a drop in religion. People are just becoming “spiritual.”

    • Stanta says:

      Good post.

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      Dustin 11:08 I agree with Stan, good post. When I said Islam and Christianity were going in different directions, I didn’t really mean Islam would take over Christianity. I don’t have any idea how it would end.

      Good point about China’s numbers. I’d still maintain the morphing is the constant change that will one day cause a morph into something different.

    • Henry says:

      Unfortunately, no one cares. The moslem can do anything.

      • Avatar of Dustin White Dustin White says:

        That is just a ridiculous statement. Muslims are persecuted here in America as well, by intolerant individuals who use this same sort of propaganda.

        Only when such intolerance and hatred is stopped, will their be peace.

        • Henry says:

          No one cares and the moslem are left alone. Yet, there is not peace. Where is the intolerance? They strip search 90 year-old Norwegian grandma with a colostomy bag, yet the strapping “youth”ful moslem is run efficiently through security. I do see hatred, and it comes from the PC movement of not trying to offend the moslem at all costs.

        • Stanta says:

          Intolerant individuals. Unfortunately in the Muslim dominated countries it isn’t individuals it is the government themselves and/or with the aid of government complacency.

          I just can’t wrap my head around the ability for people like you to equate suicide bombs, fire bombing, rape, murder, kidnapping and other offenses committed against non-Muslims in the middle east to the treatment of Muslims in the US.

          Catholic Charities and Lutheran Social Services have helped many Somali refugees regardless of faith and taxes paid my US citizens provides housing and food for them. Where else in the world could they be helped like this?

          But until the peaceful protests and occasional racial slur by under educated drug and alcohol addicted, mostly youths stop. It is justifiable for the middle eastern countries to continue to kill atheists, homosexuals and Chrisyians.

          • Avatar of Dustin White Dustin White says:

            So Christians and Americans don’t do any of that? So easily do people forget the atrocities of the Crusades and even the Witch hunts. So easily do people forget the brutal killing of individuals like Matthew Shepherd and Brandon Teena. So easily do people forget the recent killings of others by Christians in Europe, many times it being Christians killing other Christians.

            So easily do people forget the abuse caused by priests and ministers who take advantage of children or their parishioners. So easily do people forget the atrocities of war in which we have committed including the interment of Japanese-Americans, and the dropping of nuclear bombs on civilians.

            So easily do we forget the religious support for slavery which resulted in the death of an untold number of humans, all justified by using the Bible. So easily do we forget the violence committed against African Americans by groups such as the KKK, that even last up to he current day. So easily do we forget the atrocities and terror caused by Neo-Nazi groups, all the while claiming it is the way of God. And so easily do people forget the violence and terror committed against Muslims or anyone suspected of being a Muslim in the United States.

            Intolerance will not defeat intolerance. Hating ones neighbor will only lead to more hate. Sure, you can find atrocities committed by Muslims, and others can find those committed by Christians. To think that such actions are representative of the whole is foolish though and only displays ignorance. The only outcome of which is more suffering.

            And to think, Jesus said to love one’s neighbor as themselves. To bad more Christians don’t take that seriously.

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