Thinking Christian

Thinking Christianity for church, home, and community

Christianity, China, and the West

Posted on Jul 28, 2010 by Tom Gilson

I love it when two news items flow into one another virtually unawares. Chuck Colson wrote this morning:

Chinese scholars were asked to “look into what accounted for the success, in fact, the pre-eminence of the West all over the world.” After considering possible military, economic, political and cultural explanations, they concluded that the answer lay in what the Chinese scholars saw as the “heart” of the West’s pre-eminent culture: Christianity.

This comes in interesting conjunction with an NPR story SteveK brought to our attention yesterday: “In the land of Mao, rising tide of Christianity among Chinese.”

Some recent surveys have calculated there could be as many as 100 million Chinese Protestants. That would mean that China has more Christians than Communist Party members, which now number 75 million….

“In China, a lot of so-called atheists treat money as their God,” storms* the young man who is preaching to the gathered crowd. “But only in God’s truth can you find real freedom.”

As Colson also wrote in that same piece,

Still, it’s a powerful reminder of how Christianity transforms not only individual lives but entire societies as well.

For a more extended version of the Chinese scholars’ conclusions see here.

*Having spent more than two months in China, I find the image of a young Chinese man “storming” to a crowd amusingly difficult to conjure up. I could be wrong; two months isn’t that long. Still, it sounds to me like reporter-speak for impassioned preaching.

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