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Did a Dutch researcher discover evidence of God’s promise to Abraham?


Is a promise God made to Abraham and his descendants still working today? Photo: Abraham by Jozseph Molnar (1821-1899): Wikipedia

Is a promise God made to Abraham and his descendants still working today? Photo: Abraham by Jozseph Molnar (1821-1899): Wikipedia

When God called Abraham to leave the ancient city of Ur to found a new country, it promised to be a perilous journey. Abraham would encounter a wide range of peoples — some who would be friendly, others his foes and many indifferent.

God knowing Abraham’s concerns made a promise to His patriarch:

And I will bless those who bless you,
And the one who curses you I will curse.
And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.” (Genesis 12:3 NASV)

It was an interesting verse as God promised to bless those who blessed Abraham. It’s a promise I believe not only follows the physical descendants of Abraham, but his spiritual ones as well — those grafted into the root (Romans 11: 11-24). 

It is easy to interpret the blessing as financial, but according to the Theological Word Book on the Old Testament the Hebrew word for blessing means “to endue with power for success” and encompasses much more than financial.

From a Christian perspective, it can refer to a wide variety of things from simply providing freedom to worship God to valuing the contribution of Church in society.

Recently a researcher has discovered a unique connection between the growing size of a Christian population and the economic well being of a nation. Does this connection speak to this blessing promised centuries earlier?

The study

David Slikker, a Dutch researcher, wanted to test a theory proposed by Karl Marx — the founder of Communism. Marx believed as a nation became more wealthy,  the less religious its people would become.

Sliikker compared the religious growth and economies of 100 countries between 2000 to 2010. This range covered the economic downturn and recovery. The countries studied included the U.S., UK, Germany, China, Iceland, Italy, Spain and Holland. Slikker used World Religion data base and Operation World to track Christian growth and Fitch and Moody’s ratings to track the changes in a country’s economy.

Slikker discovered a direct correlation between the economic well being of a country and the growth of the Christian population. Acording to Slikker the correlation was significant enough to suggest religion itself was a contributing factor to a country’s economic well being. It was also linear, meaning the faster a Christian community grew in a country, the better the economy did compared to other countries.

But he found more interesting information when he analyzed the impact of the three major subsets of Christianity — evangelicals, protestants and Catholics.

He discovered:

  • A 100% correlation with evangelicals. Growing evangelical populations translated into growing economies.
  • A 75% correlation with protestants. The protestant movement would include Evangelicals as well as liberal churches.
  • A 50% correlation with Catholics.

In a nutshell, of the three major subsets of Christianity, the growth of the evangelical population provided the strongest correlation with economic growth and the Catholics the least.

Slikker also studied the impact of Muslim growth on a country’s economic well being. He noticed no correlation with most economic indicators and one suggested a negative impact. The Jewish populations were not large enough to provide an effective measurement.

The growth of a Christian population I believe would generally reflect a country’s acceptance of Christian beliefs and values and I suspect Slikker stumbled upon evidence of a promise God made to Abraham and his descendants thousands of years earlier.

And I will bless those who bless you,

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1 Comment

  1. Pingback: Lengthy shoulder surgery for Abraham | Sykose Extreme Sports News

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