Research shows Christianity is the largest single religion in the world with 2.2 billion followers. From its beginning in Palestine 2,000 years ago, it has grown from one person, Jesus Christ its founder, to become the world’s most populous religion. Not only does it have the greatest number of professing followers, but it has shaped politics and social policies far beyond the rituals and church attendance. Most hospitals, charitable organizations, and educational institutions owe their origins and inspiration to the influence of Christianity. Some believe this extensive influence of Christ’s kingdom was predicted in a parable He told. We read this in Matthew 13, “The Kingdom of Heaven is like a mustard seed planted in a field. It is the smallest of all seeds, but it becomes the largest of garden plants; it grows into a tree, and birds come and make nests in its branches.” Bible scholars differ on the exact meaning of some of Jesus parables. But His influence on our society is notable. While we long to see even more of the things He taught shape our values to give us a more righteous and just society, we celebrate the influence it has had so far.

Dr. Melvin E. Banks, Sr.

Dr. Melvin E. Banks, Sr. is the founder and chairman of UMI (Urban Ministries, Inc.). Under his direction, UMI has grown to be a leading publisher of Christian education resources for churches in the African American community. Read More

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