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Nine Significant Features of the Chinese House Church


7. Paternal Leadership

Leaders in China are regarded as parental figures. Their opinions are revered and their commands are obeyed. This leadership style might not work well in Western culture, but the current church growth would never have happened without it.

Being able to give orders and know that they will be followed without question has allowed the leaders to manage an army of believers in China that is ready to march on the gates of hell.

Being able to give orders and know that they will be followed without question has allowed the leaders to manage an army of believers in China that is ready to march on the gates of hell. This army strongly believes in its cause and completely trusts its leaders. Naturally, there are flaws with this kind of leadership model, as with any, but it has been very advantageous for the Chinese. Whether we agree with it or not, this is the model that the Chinese use and the one that God has chosen to work through mightily.


8. The Back to Jerusalem Vision

The Great Commission compelled the early church to go into unknown lands to share the good news. From Paul and Barnabas’s first missionary expedition to today’s thriving missionary organizations, the Great Commission has sent missionaries into far-flung regions under less-than-desirable conditions to bring people out of darkness and despair.

A church without vision lacks the inspiration and direction to make any real impact on society. In contrast, a new day has dawned in China, and a fresh vision has come to life.

As previously stated, the Back to Jerusalem vision of the underground church in China is to take the gospel into the countries between the borders of China and Jerusalem. That swath of land contains the highest level of poverty and the largest number of unreached people groups on earth today. Despite the desperate need in this area, only a small percentage of missions funding from the Western world is used to evangelize it.

This situation is changing due to the Chinese. As the Chinese House Church increases its numbers, the number of its missionaries also increases. Unlike the focus of most of the Western church, its focus is on the hardest-to-reach areas. Its missionaries are being sent to the most difficult countries, and the majority of its resources are being used for this effort.

“Back to Jerusalem” has been the heart cry of the Chinese church for several generations, but only a handful of believers carried this vision through the darkest hours of persecution. Today, the younger generation has caught the vision and is determined to carry out its mission. With a strong unifying vision, the younger generation has a direct passion to funnel its energy and efforts into this task.

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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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