Are We Winning or Losing?

“Then I looked. And there was a great multitude which no one could count, from all nations and tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands.”

— Revelation 7:9

When Jesus died and rose from the dead, there were some 120 believers who gathered in an upper room to pray, at His command. No one even took note of their existence.

Then Peter preached a sermon, and 3,000 believed. Shortly thereafter, 5,000 more were added to the number, followed by a great multitude of Jews and priests. Next came a time of persecution and when it ended in 313 A.D. with the Edict of Toleration, there were about 10 million professing Christians. By the year 1000, this number had grown to 50 million. By 1800 A.D., the number had grown to 215 million professing Christians. That is an increase of 165 million in 800 years.

In 1795, the modern missionary movement began in earnest with William Carey. By the year 1900 A.D., 100 years later, the number had grown to 500 million professing Christians. That is an increase of 285 million in one century. Jump ahead to today, and we are talking about roughly 2.2 billion professing Christians, larger than any other religion.

There is nothing even vaguely approaching this accomplishment in the annals of human history. When we look at the explosive growth of the Church worldwide, it makes us realize that, by God’s grace, we are winning.

Jesus Christ, Lord of the universe, grant us strength today to further Your kingdom on earth. Thank You for letting us be a part of this great multitude who belong to You. Help us to not miss the big picture in our everyday life…