The Meaning of Truth
Originally published 1961 -- Revised Edition 1970
Hopefully this doesn't stir up too much anxiety with the copyright owner.
Chapter One: Comments on the World Population Chart
A study of the Chart on the preceding page will provide information, generally speaking, pertaining to the distribution of the people of the world as to their religious or non-religious affiliation.
In some instances the figures given are estimates since no accurate vital statistics are available. For example, no one knows how many Buddhists there are. Many are in China and any accurate count is impossible. This is true also of the Moslem count. The figures given for North America include Central America and the West Indies. Australasia, or Oceana, includes Australia and New Zealand. It is of interest to note that the listed religious affiliations in Europe and Asia are reported to have more people belonging to churches than they have population, as reported by the World Almanac, 1969. The Chart as to percentage of distribution, is based on a world population of 3,391,854,000.
In passing, it is well to say that the statistical office of the U.N. June 1968, estimates world population of 3,419,420,000, but as stated, the Chart is based on the former figure.
Christian Population of the World
Christianity, world wide, is more than twice as large as the next religious group. It represents 29% of the world's population and is divided as follows:
Roman Catholic 600,768,000
Eastern Ortodox 146,080,000
Protestant (254 denominations) 227,851,000
The Church of Jesus Christ of L.D.S. (Mormon) 2,684,000
Asia, the largest population area of the world, contains only about 3% of the total number of Christians, while North America has 21%, South America 15%, and Europe 51%. The other 10% are found in other countries of the world, which includes Africa and Oceana.
Population of Major Religions of the World
The principle distribution of nominal religious adherents in Asia and Asia Minor consists of the following:
These, for the most part, are ethnic descendants of Japheth, the son of Noah, forming the major part of the gentile races, excepting the Moslems, who have Shemitic ethnic affinities.
Of the Jewish people who are of the lineage of Judah, a son of Jacob, there are reported to be 13.5 million in existence today. The largest number of this group, 44%, reside in North America, 30% in Europe, and 18% in the Near and Fast East.
The second largest group in the world's population, with 25%, or 834,058,000, are contained in minor cults, cultural groups, or with no religious identification at all.
Percentage Relationship of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Almost submerged in these many millions of people upon the earth, is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which is the Kingdom of God (D&C 65:106). Its membership constitutes 0.8% or less than 1% of the world's population. To a Latter-day Saint, this comparison should not be one of concern, since the Lord once said, speaking of the Kingdom of God, "Straight is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it" (Mattew 7:14).
Christian but Neither Catholic or Protestant
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, neither Catholic or Protestant, has been established as Christ's Church in these latter-days by a restoration of divine truths and authority. Unto her has come the divine commitment from the Lord to declare unto the world and its many millions of people the "Message of the Restoration," containing truths of the everlasting gospel of Jesus Christ, now revealed again, which they, too, may receive and participate in.
Reason Given for Divine Instruction to Joseph Smith
Concerning the privilege of all peoples to receive of these truths, and the reason why they should, the Lord has said:
"They seek no the Lord to establish his righteousness, but every man walketh in his own way, and after the image of his own God, whose image is in the likeness of the world, and whose substance is that of an idol, which waxeth old and shall perish in Babylon, even Babylon the great, which shall fall.
"Wherefore, I the Lord, knowing the calamity which should come upon the inhabitants of the earth, called upon my servant Joseph Smith, Jr., and spake unto him from Heaven, and gave him commandments;
"And also gave commandments to others, that they should proclaim these things unto the world; and all this that it might be fulfilled, which was written by the prophets -
"The weak things of the world shall come forth and break down the mighty and strong ones, that man should not counsel his fellow man, neither trust in the arm of flesh -
"But that every man might speak in the name of God the Lord, even the Savior of the world;
"That faith also might increase in the earth;
"That mine everlasting covenant might be established;
"That the fulness of my gospel might be proclaimed by the weak and simple unto the ends of the world, and before kings and rulers" (D&C 1:16-23).