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Help Contact Us My Account. The religion was so foreign, the reaction was an incoherent mix of savage oppression, benign neglect, and attempts at cooptation.
Still, Christians eventually became the dominant group in the Roman Empire by compounding with a respectable yearly growth rate. But there was more to it than that.
Christians were often over-represented among the intelligentsia, which gave them a strong cultural cachet, even as their innovative welfare work made them attractive to the poor. Bone fragments show Christians were healthier and lived longer than pagans, almost certainly thanks to the church's welfare system.
And of course, the church's heroic work was great PR. After a plague, while most people fled to the countryside, Christians rushed in to help the people, like they did in China in the wake of the Sichuan earthquake.
Under Xi Jinping, the Chinese government has stepped up its oppression of Christianity. An internal government document obtained by The New York Times in May shows that the church demolitions are part of a larger campaign to curb Christianity's influence on the public. According to the nine-page provincial policy statement, the Xi administration wants to put an end to "excessive" religious sites and "overly popular" religious activities, but it names one religion in particular, Christianity, and one symbol, the cross.
If history is any guide, this will only increase the popularity of Christianity. As Yu writes: "One of the phrases I have heard most often among [Chinese Christians] is: 'The greater the persecution, the greater the revival. Interestingly, Protestant Christianity is growing much faster in China than Catholic Christianity, almost certainly because the Roman Catholic Church has practiced a doctrine of appeasement to the Chinese government.
In recent years a community has also developed in Beijing through the work of the Chabad-Lubavitch movement. Kujenga Amani facilitates the exchange of ideas about diverse aspects of peacebuilding in Africa. Two of the most important religious holidays are the Qiang New Year, falling on the 24th day of the sixth month of the lunar calendar though now it is fixed on 1 October , and the Mountain Sacrifice Festival, held between the second and the sixth month of the lunar calendar. The study analysed the proportion of believers that were at the same time members of the local section of the Communist Party of China , finding that it was exceptionally high among the Taoists, while the lowest proportion was found among the Protestants. Despite this, Tibetan Buddhism began in this period to have significant presence in China, with Tibetan influence in the west, and with the Mongols and Manchus in the north. Christianity 3. They share elements that go back to the 4th century BCE and to the prehistoric culture of China, such as the School of Yin and Yang and the thought of Laozi and Zhuangzi.
Given that Protestantism is a do-it-yourself religion, where anyone is empowered to decide doctrine based on their interpretation of the Bible, we could see the emergence of new and seemingly strange versions of Christianity, acculturated to China, and perhaps mixed in with Confucianism, Buddhism, and Taoism. Today, China is pursuing a nationalistic foreign policy, combined with a domestic policy focused almost exclusively on economic growth and productivity. This comes at the expense of families, social welfare, and the environment.
To say that these are not exactly Christian values is an understatement. It is not hard to understand why the Chinese leadership is not a fan of Christianity. But Christianity could be China's only chance to survive. Because of its one-child policy, and sex-selective abortion and infanticide, China is a fast-aging country with a massive gender imbalance.
If you add to that the tensions wrought by breakneck crony capitalism and consumerism and inequality and pollution, the country is a powder keg.