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Nine Significant Features of the Chinese House Church

Looking into the secrets of the Chinese House Church can also shock us into seeing the truths of the Bible without using the cultural spectacles that sometimes dilute and pervert the Word of God. At first glance, several elements of the Chinese church might look like the results of bad judgment, but, upon closer evaluation, many of these elements are actually closer to the Jewish culture Jesus grew up in than the Western culture that dominates most foreign churches.

Upon evaluating the Chinese House Church’s hidden treasures, we can recognize at least these nine characteristics that are unique to it and have contributed to its growth in one way or another.

 

1. The Experience of Persecution

Persecution is not unique to the Chinese underground House Church. If persecution was indeed the only requirement for a revival, then China would not be alone in seeing massive numbers of people come to the Lord. However, the Chinese persecutions have been somewhat distinct in that the government actually implemented a plan for the systematic destruction of the church among its people.

The enemy saw the future and potential of the Chinese church and moved to prevent it. The enemy failed.

Chinese persecution was a direct assault on the Christian leadership in that country and aimed to erase the name of Jesus Christ from Chinese soil forever. Christians were not merely included in a massive, widespread effort to stamp out all political opponents of Communism but were specifically singled out for annihilation.

Many church leaders and other Christians in China initially agreed with and supported the tenets of Communism. The Communist Party had the backing of many Christians who were happy to see the tyrannical Nationalists replaced by those who claimed to support equal distribution of wealth and resources. In theory, equal distribution was already being practiced in the 1940s by indigenous Christian groups like the Jesus Family and the Back to Jerusalem Evangelistic Band. The Communist Party of China had an early ally in this regard.

Persecution in China did not only inflict pain on Christians but was also an attempt to dilute, pollute, pervert, and completely destroy the church.

It was the Party that first viewed the church as a natural enemy. Again, the persecution in China did not only inflict pain on Christians but was also an attempt to dilute, pollute, pervert, and completely destroy the church. The government persecuted the church with a rarely seen vile hatred that can be explained only as demonic in nature.

The movement of Sino-Christianity was determined by the Lord’s changeless will; the enemy saw the future and potential of the Chinese church and moved to prevent it. Yet, could the enemy have predicted that the very acts that were intended to eradicate Christianity would be instrumental in bringing about church growth that would not have been possible otherwise?

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Category: Church History, Spring 2018

About the Author: Eugene Bach is a pseudonym for a member of the Chinese underground church who does not wish to be identified. He was trained in U.S. military special operations and served two tours in the Persian Gulf and Asia–Pacific region, serving primarily as a member of a rapid response team focusing on targeted threat elimination, counterterrorism, and security. He has been working with the underground church in China for about twenty years, helping them to establish forward mission bases in closed countries around the world, including Iraq and Syria. Eugene leads the Chinese mission movement called Back to Jerusalem, which provides essential support for Chinese missionaries in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. He is the author or co-author of I Stand with Christ: The Courageous Life of a Chinese Christian (2015), The Underground Church (2014), Leaving Buddha: A Tibetan Monk's Encounter With the Living God (2019), Jesus In Iran (2015), and other books about the underground church in places like China, North Korea, and Iran.

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