Oh East is East, and West is West, and never the two shall meet, Till Earth and Sky stand presently at God’s great Judgment Seat;
But there is neither East nor West, Border, nor Breed, nor Birth,
When two strong men stand face to face, tho’ they come from the ends of the earth.” -Rudyard Kipling, “The Ballad of East and West”
Is Christianity a Western religion? That may not strike us as a significant question, may not register as something necessary to establish as true or false. But there are two reasons why it is important to dispel the illusion that Christianity is a “Western” religion.
Is Christianity a Western religion? Where in the world do you find Christianity?
Christianity is the most evenly dispersed religion worldwide, and this is becoming more true in the decline of colonialism. It is still the largest religion in the world.
As this CBS article reveals, when ranking nations according to the number of Christians per capita, Ireland is 56th, while the island of Micronesia is 12th. The population of Armenia (5th place) is 97.9% Christian. Armenia is located in (or North of) the Middle-East, and was the first country to declare Christianity its state religion. 2nd place? East Timor, in Southeast Asia, whose population is 99% Christian. If you exclude the Vatican, which is really just the headquarters of the Catholic Church, East Timor would actually be the most densely Christian country per capita.
Christianity thrives where it does, not because of Western ideas, but because of something deeper and more transcendent in humans worldwide. As noted in an early post, churches are growing in restricted countries like China, while numbers in America are declining.