An Indian Christian features my occasional and idiosyncratic views of religion, politics, culture and tradition. It is specialized in understanding God and humanity from an Indian Christian perspective, It promotes on New Humanity through the principles of the Athma - Jesus


Virtual library of this blog offers enormous number of resources for people from all walks of their Christian life. It also provides an annotated list of articles relating to theological studies.

Virtual Library

Virtual library offers enormous number of resources for people from all walks of their Christian life. It also provides an annotated list of articles relating to theological studies.

Current Issues

This is a blog about my living a journey within the context of being an Indian Christian. I blog about various topics from issues that affect the Church today to current political and cultural trends and even poetry.


In this new age of cyber interaction, we provide counselling services through the Internet

Monday, July 8, 2013

Insider Movement: Followers of Isa Almasih

Theological reflection
Conversion in Islam is more complicated than any other religions comparatively. Conversion is universally understood as a person who changes his world views, religion, and allegiance.[1] Therefore, there is a need realize few theological aspects of conversion. Should a Muslim need to adopt Christianity/Churchianity to have eternal life? Not at all. Salvation is based on God’s grace; it cannot be earned by rituals or work.

Theologically, and from the perspectives of institutional churches, no one can be regarded as Christian if he is not part of visible church. On the other hand, John Ridgway describes that “Jesus encouraged others to be insiders.”[2]  And Jesus also mentioned that He has many sheep which is not in this folk.

In addition, practically Muslim insider/converts cannot access Bible, Christian Scripture, and sacraments such as Baptism and Eucharist. The prevailing attitude of Islam does not tolerate these kinds of other religious observations. Does every person need Mosaic revelation, Bible to get salvation. I don’t think so. A Muslim can be touched by the work of Holy Spirit from Kuran and even from hearing Mullah in Mosque. Because, the redemptive work of Jesus Christ through the Holy Spirit does not bind with the channel of Christian religion.

Insider movements cannot be or will not be accepted by traditional churches as it lacks lots of religious principles of Christian religion. However, it facilitates thousands of insiders to be faithful follower of Christ not the Christian religion.
Missiological implications
In accordance with Muslim insider, any category of religious conversion means potentially much nuisance in Islamic society since Islam is a socio-religious community. In some context, conversion causes death penalty. Sociologically C5 offers room for keeping the social relations of an insider and transforming them. [3]

Islam is more of Theo-centric religion. By being an insider, there is a probability to preach about Islamic Christ[4] not Christian Christ. In addition, being followers of Esua and by calling themselves as Muslim.[5] An insider, they can utilize “Kuran” to communicate Christ to Muslims. Kuran and Injil are exceedingly regarded in Islamic society. Subsequently, as an alternative of presenting Christ from the Bible, Kuran and Injil have to be used as bridges to present the comprehensible notion about Christ. These things would be of assistance for the missionaries to categorize the God-fearers in the Muslim community.

But is it hypocrisy? It cannot be considered so. It can be considered only as hypocrisy if Christ is not presented in Islamic Scripture. Following Christ in Islam is absolutely possible as Christ is considered as one of the Prophets of Islam and a person who was sent by God to give salvation and will be returning on the day of Judgement.

Muslim men do not entail baptism as he had already gone through the Old Testament circumcision. Baptism means cleansing and it signifies a witnessing act? Witnessing does not mean of changing religious identity, conversely it is about following the principles of Christ. Moreover, it is witnessing through life-style. According to Rebecca Lewis, and this kind of new spirituality adds insider into the Kingdom of God and disciples of Jesus Christ.[6]

Practical Application
The word ‘Christian’ carries connotations which are offensive in Islamic context and would in reality obscure their identity as a follower of Jesus. And more over, Islamic community is more community oriented, and their community and religion are always intertwined. For that reason, if any one wants to follow Esha nabi, he/she[7] should stay with the family. Essentially, they don’t obligate to expose themselves as Christian for the sake of political religious and social scenario.

Muslim may maintain the old practices since some of them do not conflict with biblical truth, and may reject some old practices because they may directly conflicts with biblical truth, or they may modify the old practices to infuse it with Christian meaning.
Furthermore, one can follow Christ in Islam without breaking his socio-religious identity. Including following all the five pillars of Islam. Can it be a theological struggle? There are may be problem with two of the five pillars which requires them to accept Mohammad as final prophet and requires Haj pilgrimage.

An Muslim has more opportunity to know Christ without having any outside source, making it more clear, the revelation of Kuran should be considered value one to understand Christ.

One can follow Christ in Islam without breaking his socio-religious identity. Including following all the five pillars of Islam. Can it be a theological struggle? There are may be problem with 2 of the pillars which requires them to accept Mohammad as final prophet and requires Haj pilgrimage. Nevertheless, a follower of Christ cannot affirm that all that is commonly taught about the Quran and Muhammad. Therefore certain aspect of the role of Muhammad and the Quran must be reinterpreted. Ex: denial of crucifixion of Christ. However, converted Muslim should follow all the practice and traditions of the Islam as a respect of their family and community. Thus a Muslim can remain Muslim, yet live as true follower of the Jesus, Isa Almasih

As a result, C5 believers can remain legally and socially within the community of Islam.
There is no fundamental need to convert into Christian religion.

Lewis, Rebecca. “Insider Movements: The Conversation Continues, Promoting Movements to Christ Within Natural Communities.” International Journal of Frontier Missiology no. 24: 2 (Summer 2007): 75–76.
Richard, H.L. “Unpacking the Insider Paradigm: An Open Discussion on Points of Diversity.” International Journal of Frontier Missiology 4, no. 26 (Winter 2009): 175–180.
Ridgway, John. “Insider Movements in the Gospels and Acts.” International Journal of Frontier Missiology no. 24: 2 (Summer 2007): 77–86.
Sanchez, Daniel R. “Contextualization and the Missionary Endeavor.” In Missiology: An Introduction to the Foundations, History, and Strategy of World Missions, edited by John Mark Terry, Ebbie Smith, and Justice Anderson. Nashville, New York: Broadman and Holman, 1998.
Tiwari, Ravi. “Theology of A Convert.” In Yisu Das: Witness of A Convert, edited by Ravi Tiwari. Delhi: ISPCK, 2000.

[1] Ravi Tiwari, “Theology of A Convert,” in Yisu Das: Witness of A Convert, ed. by Ravi Tiwari (Delhi: ISPCK, 2000), 225.
[2] John Ridgway, “Insider Movements in the Gospels and Acts,” International Journal of Frontier Missiology no. 24: 2 (Summer 2007): 79.
[3] Rebecca Lewis, “Insider Movements: The Conversation Continues, Promoting Movements to Christ Within Natural Communities,” International Journal of Frontier Missiology no. 24: 2 (Summer 2007): 76.
[4] Islamic Christ from Islamic perspectives with the help of their Scripture, without having changes in their worldview.
[5] Muslim means one who believes in Allah – the creator.
[6] Lewis, “Insider Movements: The Conversation Continues, Promoting Movements to Christ Within Natural Communities,” 76–77.
[7] Female are more in danger of apostasy as Islam is more dominated society.

Friday, July 5, 2013

The Meaning of Freedom

To all my American friends and family members
Happy Independence Day to you all.
While many Americans will spend this holiday with family and friends enjoying summer weather, fireworks, and outdoor barbeques, thousands of people in other parts of the world are fighting for freedom. Today, in particular, we, the people of the world, pay tribute to those of our friends in all parts of the world for their strength, their courage, their willingness and their LOVE.

It is a time for every single people in the world to recognize that the blessings of freedom are not free. They come from courage, open minding and loving each other regardless of any nationalities and religions. We need to build a bridge between all people and this is now our responsibility to fulfill - so that our children can enjoy a better life.

May God bless you all

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Research Paper on the Audience of Galatians

This paper aims to deal with the historical puzzle as to who were the recipients of Paul’s letter to the Galatians. Raymond E. Brown notes that this debate has be deliberated upon for nearly two centuries by various scholars.1 As James D.G. Dunn comments, the difficulty in dealing with this issue arises out of the confusion with the names “Galatia” or “Galatians” for it can be used
ethnically, referring to the descendants of the Gallic tribes and administratively, referring to the Roman province.2 However, Dunn notes that the issue largely revolves around the relation
between Acts and Galatians, whether Paul could be referring to the churches established during the first missionary journey (Acts 13-14).3

Historical Background
Before getting into the main argument, it would be worthwhile to locate the audience in their historical context. Raymond E. Brown notes that
Galatai were Indo-Aryans, related to the Celts and Gauls, who invaded Asia Minor about 279 B.C. Within fifty years, after defeat by the kingdom of Pergamum, their territory was restricted to a mountainous central section around Ancyra (modern Ankara). Rome used them as allies in various wars; and when the last Galatian king died in 25 B.C., their ethnic homeland was incorporated into the large Roman “Province of Galatia” that extended south toward the Mediterranean, including Pisidian Antioch, Iconium, Lystra, and Derbe.4
Geographically speaking, Dunn shows us that the above mentioned towns (i.e. Pisidian Antioch,
Iconium, Lystra and Derbe) were situated south of ethnic Galatia, but had been included in the
Roman province as its southernmost part.5 However, Brown argues that Luke never refers to the
southern region as “Galatia” and that the southern cities Antioch, Derbe, Iconium and Lystra
(Acts 13:14; 14:6) are not placed in the Roman “province” but in their “districts”6 Moreover,
Walter Hansen notes that by the third century A.D., the province of Galatia was reduced to
approximately its ancient ethnological dimensions, the original “northern” territory of the Celtic

invaders.7 Hansen also mentions that this “northern” part was the only Galatia that existed during
the patristic times.8 Hansen further notes that “Galatia” in Paul’s time, referred to the entire
Roman province covering Pontus in the north to Pamphylia in the South. Hansen says that inspite of their ethnic origin; all the residents of this province were called “Galatians.”9

Recipients: Northern Galatians
Having briefly seen the historicity of the problem, let us now discuss the main issue. In this
section we will look at the evidences for a northern Galatia. Dunn shows us that in Acts 16:6 and
18:23 Paul makes a passing reference to “Galatia and Phrygia.”10 Dunn notes that according to
Luke’s record of Paul’s missionary visit in Acts 16:6 the two cities “Galatia and Phrygia” are
different from the cities mentioned in Acts 14:1-5 (Derbe, Lystra).11 Hence Dunn argues that, for
Luke “Galatia” could be referring to the ethnic Galatians in the north which does not correlate to
his first missionary visit but rather to Paul’s initial mission work according to Acts 16:6.12

Moreover, Brown notes that the term “Galatia” in Paul’s address (Gal. 3:1) though maybe
confusing is more appropriate for the “ethnic Galatians” in the north than for the “Hellenized
Galatians” in the south.13 Hansen also notes that scholars such as J. B. Lightfoot and H. D. Betz
have argued for a northern position based on the grounds that the recipients were churches in or
near Ancyra, Pessinus and Tavium, three cities in northern Asia Minor (modern Turkey).14
Hansen notes that pro-northern scholars have understood this territory to be originally conquered
and settled by a distinct “ethnic” group of Celtic (Gaulish) descent in the third century B.C.
Therefore they hold the view that in Gal. 3:1, Acts 16:6 and 18:23 Paul is referring to this
“particular race” that belongs to north Galatia.15 However, to take a pro-northern view is still
confusing in the light of Hansen’s comment that inspite of their ethnic origin, all the residents of 
the Roman province covering Pontus in the north to Pamphylia in the South were called

Recipients: Southern Galatians
On the other hand, other scholars have equally noted evidences for a southern position. D.A.
Carson, Douglas J. Moo and Leon Morris have closely observed why the southerners of various races included in the Roman province are considered to be the audience. Firstly, Carson, Moo and Morris note that some scholars believe that Paul’s ministry was more in the southern region than in the north. Moreover, the few instances that refer to his northern presence do not mention any church planting done by Paul (Acts 16:6; 8:23).16
Secondly, Carson, Moo and Morris show us that while Paul’s reference to “the region of Phrygia and Galatia” mentioned in Acts 16:6 is taken by the northern contenders to mean “Phrygia and
the Galatian country” inversely, scholars such as F.F. Bruce have suggested that “the region of
Phrygia and Galatia” was merely an exit route that Paul took whenever he left Lystra and
Iconium (Acts 16:2; 18:23) and thus is properly “Phrygio-Galatic territory.”17 However, Carson, Moo and Morris note that northern contenders still argue that Luke tends to speak of places in
geographic terms such as “Pisidian” Antioch (Acts 13:14) thereby suggesting that “the region of Phrygia and Galatia” must literally be taken as “geographic Phrygia” and “geographic Galatia”
as two different places.18 But, Carson, Moo and Morris conclude by saying that such a distinction is unlikely and thus pointing to a southern Galatia.19

Brown on the other hand contends that Acts 16:6-7 points more towards the northern Galatia.
Brown argues that the expression “the region of Phrygia and Galatia” could either mean that
Paul, Silas and Timothy during their second missionary journey “moved westward through the
Phrygian region of the province of Galatia (thus still not north Galatia), or moved northward
through Phrygia into the North Galatian territory proper? Brown argues that “geographically”

although the case for a southern Galatia seems more plausible the evidence still compels to a
northern position.20

Thirdly, Carson, Moo and Morris points to Paul’s territorial usage of titles such as “Galatians”
which is usually used to refer to the Roman provinces of Lycaonia, Antioch, Lystra, Iconium and Derbe. However, Carson, Moo and Morris show that there are other who argue against this
position, have noted that Paul’s usage is subject to change and therefore there is also a
probability that “Galatians” could still include the ethnic Galatians in the north.21

Fourthly, Carson, Moo and Morris identify the mention of two individuals who contributed
towards the offerings for the Jerusalem believers (Acts 20:4; 1 Cor. 16:1). Among the others who
contributed from Berea and Thessalonica, scholars say that the two contributors from Galatia
could be “South Galatians” although this information is not directly derived from Luke’s
Fifthly, Carson, Moo and Morris note that it is unlikely that Paul having a physical illness (Gal. 4:13) would have ministered in north Galatia which was known to be a dry and mountainous region unlike the southern part which was a commercial centre and easy for access to other places.23 Moreover, Carson, Moo and Morris say that scholars have also suggested that even Paul’s Jewish opponents would not have pursued him into the hard northern terrain but rather to an easy and accessible area in the south which is more plausible.24 Moreover, W. M. Ramsay argues that churches developed along the great lines of communication which points the
evidence more toward a southern position than a northern Galatia.25
Sixthly, Carson, Moo and Morris note that the words of welcome that Paul (Gal. 4:14) has also
been used to suggest that a similar welcome was given to Paul at Lystra (Acts 14:12). But as
argued by Carson, Moo and Morris this connection between Gal. 4:14 and Acts 14:12 is not a

strong enough evidence to sustain a southern position because of the fact that others argue Paul’s
sickly condition (Gal. 4:13).26

Finally, Carson, Moo and Morris notes the mention of Barnabas (Gal. 2:1, 9, 13), who
accompanied Paul only during his visit to the South Galatians churches and Peter (Gal. 2:7-8)
who according to the available evidence is never seen in northern Galatia and hence suggests that both of them could be known only by the Southern Galatians.27 However, Brown questions that “would not Barnabas’ presence at the famous Jerusalem meeting have been more widely known and not only to those whom he evangelized?”28

Recipients: North or South?
Carson, Moo and Morris tells us that scholars such as F.F. Bruce have concluded that the
Northern region could be preferred over the southern because the arguments are more
compelling in this direction.29 On the other hand Dunn says that neither a northern nor a southern
position can be fully argued and a decisive decision made. However, says Dunn, the puzzle does
not in any way affect the fact that the recipients included both Jews and Gentiles. Dunn notes
that a mention in Gal. 4:8 clearly the inclusion of Gentiles in Paul’s address which places them
among the audience.30

It is clear from the scholarly opinion that evidences does not help in clearly determining the
destination for the letter to Galatians. Thus to pronounce a final verdict on whether the audience
are north or south Galatians is not possible at this point. While scholars such as F.F. Bruce have
suggested a northern position based on compelling evidence, as rightly noted by Dunn, it does
not make any impact on determining the particularity of the audience. For Paul, the more serious
issue was to address both Jews and Gentiles. Thus to be caught up with the geographic issue is to
miss the point of Paul’s address to a racial mix of audience which is more important in this letter.

1 Raymond E. Brown, An Introduction to the New Testament (N.Y.: Doubleday, 1997), 475.
2 James D.G. Dunn, The Epistle to the Galatians (London.: A & C Black, 1993), 6.
3 Dunn, Galatians, 6.
4 Brown, An Introduction to the New Testament, 475.
5 Dunn, Galatians, 6.
6 Brown, An Introduction to the New Testament, 476. 
7 G. Walter Hansen, Galatians (England.: IVP, 1994), 17.
8 Hansen, Galatians, 17.
9 Hansen, Galatians, 17.
10 Dunn, Galatians, 6.
11 Dunn, Galatians, 6.
12 Dunn, Galatians, 6.
13 Brown, An Introduction to the New Testament, 476.
14 Hansen, 16.
15 Hansen, 16.

16 Carson , Moo and Morris (eds), An Introduction to the New Testament, 290.
17 Carson , Moo and Morris (eds), An Introduction to the New Testament, 290-291.
18 Carson , Moo and Morris (eds), An Introduction to the New Testament, 292.
19 Carson , Moo and Morris (eds), An Introduction to the New Testament, 292. 
20 Brown, An Introduction to the New Testament, 476.
21 Carson , Moo and Morris (eds), An Introduction to the New Testament, 291.
22 Carson , Moo and Morris (eds), An Introduction to the New Testament, 291.
23 Carson , Moo and Morris (eds), An Introduction to the New Testament, 291.
24 Carson , Moo and Morris (eds), An Introduction to the New Testament, 291.
25 W. M. Ramsay, The Church in the Roman Empire (London.: Hodder & Stoughton, 1893), 10-11. 

26 Carson , Moo and Morris (eds), An Introduction to the New Testament, 291.
27 Carson , Moo and Morris (eds), An Introduction to the New Testament, 292.
28 Brown, An Introduction to the New Testament, 476.
29 Carson , Moo and Morris (eds), An Introduction to the New Testament, 293.
30 Dunn, Galatians, 6.


Brown, Raymond E. An Introduction to the New Testament. N.Y.: Doubleday, 1997. 467-482. 

Carson, D.A, Douglas J. Moo and Leon Morris (eds). An Introduction to the New Testament.  Grand Rapids, Mich.: Zondervan, 1992. 289-303. 

Dunn, James D.G. The Epistle to the Galatians. London.: A & C Black, 1993. 

Hansen, G. Walter. Galatians. England.: IVP, 1994.  

Ramsay, W.M. The Church in the Roman Empire. London.: Hodder & Stoughton, 1893.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Jesus is the Son of God and King, because he has all authority over heaven and earth (Matthew 28:16-20)

This passage is the final instructive from Jesus to his disciples. After his resurrection, Jesus’ first appearance to the two women (Matt. 28:7-9), and he sent two women to tell the disciples to go to Galilee and to meet him (Matt. 28:10). And our text is his second appearance to the eleven disciples at Galilee (Matt. 28:16-20). In this passage the narrator intends to remind his reader (s) to understand Jesus is more than human (i.e., Jesus is the “Son of God,” and “King”), and his special purpose for our life.

Homiletical Outlines

1. Obey Jesus because he alone to be worshipped
Matthew 28:16, the narrator narrating the story that the eleven disciples (cf. after the death of Judas at 27:5) went up to the mountain of Galilee where Jesus had arranged to meet them.
There are two groups of people who went to meet Jesus in Galilee: (i) those who worshiped Jesus; and (ii) those who doubted.

2. Obey Jesus because he has the supreme authority over all aspects of life
The spheres in which he now exercises absolute (as the risen Lord) authority are enlarged to include heaven and earth (i.e., universe). Moreover, this passage echoes Daniel 7:14 says, “To him was given dominion and glory and kingship, that all peoples, all nations, and language should serve him….”

3. Obey Jesus’ commands because his presence and power would among his believers
Jesus links his universal authority with the command to “go” and “make disciples of all the nations” through the connecting word “therefore.” Once the disciples are made, it is essential for them to be baptized in the name of the triune God (Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit in one Godhead) in order to become incorporated into a Christian community or signifies incorporation into the fellowship of God. The activity of “teaching” is also essential part of the discipling process. The disciples obeyed and imitated the words and actions of the Lord Jesus and then passed on to others what he taught.

4. Conclusion
Finally, we learnt that the disciples made Jesus King of their lives and worship him as their Savior, God, and King….

5. Application
Just like the disciples, with the same authority, Jesus still commanded us to tell others the Good
News and make them disciples for the kingdom….

Sunday, January 20, 2013



Zacharias Ursinus (1534-1583), German Reformed theologian and principal author of the Heidelberg Catechism, wrote in the Special Prolegomena section of his Commentary on the Heidelberg Catechism:

This necessity may be urged,

1. Because it is the command of God: “Ye shall teach them to your children” etc. (Deut. 11. 19.)

2. Because of the divine glory which demands that God be not only rightly known and worshipped by those of adult age, but also by children, according as it is. said, “Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength.” (Ps. 8. 2.)

3. On account of our comfort and salvation; for without a true knowledge of God and his Son Jesus Christ, no one that has attained to years of discretion and understanding can be saved, or have any sure comfort that he is accepted in the sight of God. Hence it is said, “This is life eternal that they might know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent,” And again, “Without faith it is impossible to please God.” (John 17. 3, Heb. 11. 6.) And not only so, but no one believes on him of whom he knows nothing, or has not heard; for, “How shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard?” “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Rom. 10. 14, 17.) It is necessary, therefore, for all those who will be saved, to lay hold of, and embrace the doctrine of Christ, which is the chief and fundamental doctrine of the gospel. But, in order that this may be done, there must be instructions imparted to this effect and of necessity, some brief and simple form of doctrine, suited and adapted to the young, and such as are unlearned.

4. For the preservation of society and the church. All past history proves that religion and the worship of God, the exercise and practice of piety, honesty, justice, and truth, are of the greatest importance to the well-being and perpetuation of the church and of the commonwealth. But it is in vain that we look for these things among barbarous nations, since they have never been known to produce the fruits of Piety and virtue. Hence, there is a necessity that we should be trained to the practice of these things from our earliest years; because the heart of man is depraved and evil from his youth; yea, such is the corruption of our nature, that unless we early commence the work of reformation and moral training, we too late apply a remedy when, through long delay, the evil principles and inclinations of the heart have become so strengthened and confirmed, as to bid defiance to the restraints we may then wish to impose upon them. If we are not correctly instructed in our childhood out of the sacred Scriptures concerning God and his will, and do not then commence the practice of piety, it is with great difficulty, if ever, we are drawn away from these errors which are, as it were, born in us, or which we have imbibed from, our youth, and that we are led to abandon the vices in which we have been brought up, and to which we have been accustomed. If, therefore, the church and state are to be preserved from degeneracy and final destruction, it is of the utmost importance that this depravity of our nature should, in due time, be met with proper restraints, and be subdued.

5. There is a necessity that all persons should be made acquainted with the rule and standard according to which we are to judge and decide, in relation to the various opinions and dogmas of men, that we may not be led into error, and be seduced thereby, according to the commandment which is given in relation to this subject, “Beware of false prophets.” “Prove all things.” “Try the spirits whether they are of God.” (Matt. 7. 15, 1 Thess. 5. 21, 1 John 4. l.) But the law and the Apostle’s creed, which are the chief parts of the catechism, constitute the rule and standard according to which we are to judge of the opinions of men, from which we may see the great importance of a familiar acquaintance with them.

6. Those who have properly studied and learned the Catechism, are generally better prepared to understand and appreciate the sermons which they hear from time to time, inasmuch as they can easily refer and reduce those things which they hear out of the word of God, to the different heads of the catechism to which they appropriately belong, whilst, on the other hand, those who have not enjoyed this preparatory training, hear sermons for the most part, with but little profit to themselves.

7. The importance of catechisation may be urged in view of its peculiar adaptedness to those learners who are of weak and uncultivated minds, who require instruction in a short, plain, and perspicuous manner, as we have it in the catechism, and would not, on account of their youth and weakness of capacity, be able to understand it, if presented in a lengthy and more difficult form.

8. It is also necessary, for the purpose of distinguishing and separating the youths, and such as are unlearned, from schismatics and profane heathen, which can most effectually be done by a judicious course of catechetical instruction.

Lastly. A knowledge of the catechism is especially important for those who are to act as teachers, because they ought to have a more intimate acquaintance with the doctrine of the church than others, as well on account of their calling, that they may one day be able to instruct others, as on account of the many facilities which they have for obtaining a knowledge of this doctrine, which it becomes them diligently to improve, that they may, like Timothy, become well acquainted with the Holy Scriptures, and “be good ministers of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith, and of a good doctrine, whereunto they have attained.” (1. Tim. 4, 6.)

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Percentage of Christians in India

Although the exact origins of Christianity in India remain unclear, there is a general scholarly consensus that Christianity was rooted in India by the 6th century AD. (based on the available documents).

·         However, according to the St.Thomas tradition, Christianity's existence in India can be traced back to the 1st century

·         Christianity was established in Indian even before some of the European nations became Christianity.
·         Christianity is India's third largest religion, with approximately 24 million followers, constitution 2.3 percent (according to the census) of India's population.
·         However, the Census does not take into consideration those who do not explicitly identify themselves as Christians.
·         Christians are found all across India and in all walks of life, with major populations in parts of South India, God and North East India.
·         Major urban centers also have sizable Christian presence. (something around 13% of urban population, 6% in Bangalore, 5% in Chennai).
·         Strong pockets of Christians are also found in south Gujarat,, Punjab, chattisgarh and Bihar.

Categories of Christians
·         Syrian, Orthodox, Mar Thoma Christians
·         Anglo Indian Christians (first Methodist missionary to India, focused on them, so there are good number of Anglo Indians are Methodists)
·         Christians from the upper castes background. (William wilberforce played vital role in 1813 rule which allows missionaries to do ministry among Indians)
o    From 1813-1860 lots of early converts of these missionaries were upper castes. most of them were Brahmins and some are Sathyiars.
·         Christians from Dalit background. (1850 onwards, there was significant mission movement among Dalits)
o    The era of mass movement began from 1850 onwards.
·         Christians from Tribal background.
o    Most missionaries did not want to go inner part of country. But once mass movement taken place, they started go inside the country.
·         Crypto Christians with dual identity. (Crypto - those who do not want reveal their real identity) (they are found in church but not necessarily)
·         Secret followers of Christ. (they are not found in church)
·         Anonymous Christians.

Some more Categories

·         Yesu Bhaktas - (devotees of Christ - mostly they live in Varanasi)
·         Yesu Satsongis - mostly from Punjab, they don’t say that they are not Christians but they follow the teachings of Christ.
·         Yesu Darbaris - in the court yard of Christ, everyone is welcome, we don’t need to Christians. It was developed by Narayanverma Thilak in Maharastra.
·         Believers found in house churches - they don’t feel the need of Christians but they strictly follow the principles of Christ.
·         Except the first five categories, the Cencsus of Indian does not record other categories of people as Christians
·         The fourth and fifth categories of people largely became Christians through mass movements.

If we put together all these categories, Indian at least should have 5-7% of Christians. It approximately 50 million Christians.