Can Islam Overtake Christianity?

Feature Article Can Islam Overtake Christianity?
JAN 25, 2024 LISTEN

Centuries ago, it was predicted based on available records then that there was no way the gospel could penetrate and be established in Africa. It was further stated that Africa was more likely to be Islamized and taken over by other religions than Christianity. We are living evidence of the fact that the anticipated projection did not materialize. Africa is more Christianized today than any other continent of the world.

In the article, 25 Countries where Muslim Population will Increase the Most by 2050, the author attempts to predict that by 2050, Islam will overtake Christianity in terms of population. He noted:

"The religious profile of the globe is rapidly evolving, primarily driven by fertility rates and the percentage of youth populations among the world’s major religious groups. Islam today is the second largest religion in the world after Christianity, with about 24% of the world's population, or 1.8 billion people, practicing the religion. However, according to the Pew Research Center, by 2050, the world’s Muslim population is projected to come close to equaling Christians which is currently an estimated 2.4 billion."

The writer continued: "Between 2010 and 2050, the population size of Muslims is projected to grow 73%, while Christian population is expected to rise by 35% ..."

Reading the article, the following issues emerged:

#1. Christianity is different from Islam.

The writer puts both Christianity and Islam on the same wavelength – as religions competing to overtake each other in terms of numerical strength. That's a faulty thinking because Christianity is not a religion like other religions of the world. In Christianity, the God of the Bible became Man (Jesus Christ) and reconciled lost man to Himself (2 Corinthians 5:19). In other religions, a lost man wants to reconcile himself to ‘God’. But we know that no man comes to the Father except they have been chosen and go through the Son of God (John 14:6). Apostle Peter says that salvation is in no man than Jesus Christ (Acts 4:12). Christianity and Islam are not in competition. Christ is redeeming His bride, whom He will showcase in the end.

#2. Christianity doesn't grow like Islam.

Reasoning from #1 above, we can say that since Christianity differs from Islam in substance and form, they are both propelled by distinct catalysts and/or phenomena. In 1 Corinthians 3:6-7 (NKJV), Apostle Paul gives us how the Christian faith grows. He said, "I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. So then neither he who plants is anything, nor he who waters, but God who gives the increase." Christianity does not grow by human devices. Our strategies are divinely inspired and Holy Spirit motivated. We don't go unless we are moved. We don't preach unless we are sent by the Father, Son and the Spirit. You cannot therefore use the strategies of human birth by other faiths to judge the growth of Christianity.

#3. Christians must preach the gospel.

Having raised the two basic ideas above, Christians must also notice that the ballooning number of people of other faiths simply means the field is ripe for labourers to venture in and rescue the lost for the Kingdom of Light. It took 120 Spirit-filled disciples to turn the whole of Jerusalem and the then known world to Christ (Acts 17:6). Indeed, Paul was a threat to empires and cultures because he had compassion on the souls of men and necessity was laid on Him to preach the gospel to them. He said in Romans 10:14-15 that people will hear the gospel and be saved if preachers are sent by God.

#4. Christians know the end of the story.

The God of the Bible has revealed to us in His holy scriptures that in the end, innumerable companies of people will be in heaven to dwell with Him (Revelation 7:9). No one who is meant to end up in heaven will miss it. Apostle John said that he saw people that could not be counted. In the end, it is not Islam that wins; rather, it is Christianity that prevails, as foretold in the Bible. The kingdoms of this world shall become the Kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ (Revelation 11:15). Every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ – whom they denied as Lord – is Lord of all (Philippians 2:10-11).

From the above, we can learn that Christianity is at a superior advantage than Islam. The God who made the heavens and earth and everyone in it, is sovereign over all things including the spiritual realm (Psalm 24:1). He has fashioned things in a manner that anyone who does not have the Son (who died on the cross), does not have eternal life. But anyone who has believed in the Son has eternal life (John 3:16). It is urgent to preach the gospel to the lost who feel they outnumber the saved. In the time of Noah, men disregarded his righteous warnings and ended up being destroyed by the flood (Genesis 7). To my Muslim friends, salvation is FOUND ONLY IN JESUS CHRIST, THE SOON COMING KING.

Eric Otchere is committed to declaring the whole counsel of God through systematic writing and preaching of God's word. He writes a daily blog called Living the Gospel. He can be reached via mail on [email protected].