Posts in Church China
Truth and Unity, Part 4: We Can Cure This Disease of Division

Today we must note that here there wasn’t an emphasis on the individual's calling; rather, God’s call was to all twelve tribes of Israel, Ephraim, Manessah, Beersheba, etc. All must return. Whether you are in a mainstream denomination or not, all are called to enter his sanctuary together. You must notice that here there is not a most important tribe.

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Chinese Pastor Roundtable: Once You Taste It, You Cannot Return

When you have a focus on the gospel, its power itself is transforming. Whenever we hear the gospel, whenever you taste the sweetness of the real, true gospel – the resurrection, the cross, the ascension – you are looking for the eternal rest [that comes] after his return. Once you taste that, you cannot return. You reach a point where you can never return. That sweetness will always attract you in that direction.

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Chinese Pastor Roundtable: A Big Crisis Will Be the Next Generation

I don’t think persecution is the main difficulty for the Chinese churches. The more persecution, the more revival for the Chinese churches. Sometimes we are expecting persecution from the government. When pastors are arrested revival comes to the church. Most of the time, the pastor is the stumbling block of the revival.

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Chinese Pastor Roundtable: We Have Been Missing a Part of Our Faith

In many, many ages God has raised up different people — Martin Luther, Calvin, Jonathan Edwards, Tim Keller — and it’s God’s heart to have those people. They are not perfect. In God’s eyes, they are all sinners, but they are faithful servants of God. They are sinners justified by God’s blood. They are just like a match; he is bringing the torch. Without the match the torch is there, but it never burns. They are just the match. We want to be the matches, to burn the torch.

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Church China Roundtable: Five Questions for Churches Today Based on the Spirit of the Reformation

In this case, I think that the value of the Reformation for the Chinese house church lies in this – a conscious identity with the true meaning of the traditions of the holy universal church in theology, ministry, governing systems, etc., brought about by the rediscovery of the gospel. Apart from anti-institutionalism, I think the traditions of the Chinese house church are much in agreement with the spirit of the Reformation, but it lacks a self-identity. This self-identity can come either from an intellectually-led social identity or from the rediscovery of the gospel.

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Church China Roundtable: The Reformation and Me

Later in my study of doctrine such experiences increasingly made me feel deeply about this question: why was the impact of the gospel was so powerful at the beginning of the Reformation, but the same doctrine passed down to us today makes no similar impact on the church? At the time of the Reformation, every doctrine was clear and lively expressed in the lives and ministry of the people. However, in today's church, the doctrines are often abstract and not easy to accept and grasp. We spend a lot of time teaching the content of the doctrines, but believers only get abstract knowledge, and in real life their intuitive focus is still on what to do and how to do it. They are very earnest in doing things and learn a lot of knowledge, but what is reflected in their behavior is not the vigorous response brought about by studying the doctrines. The doctrines do not genuinely shape their lives. So why? I think maybe it is because they do not really understand these doctrines. Those who teach Christian doctrine may give a complete presentation of theology, but it is still alien to how the doctrines are actively applied in practical life. Our teaching of doctrine is merely intellectual recitation, and so naturally people’s responses are not the intended transformation.

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