ChinaSource Quarterlies

Theological Reflections on Urban Churches in China

Vol. 17, No. 2


Articles in this Issue

Editorials

Toward a Chinese Theology

The editor's point of view.

Lead Article

Reformed Theology

A Christian Thought Movement to a Church Movement

Over the past forty years, reformed theology has become influential among Chinese Christians and, more recently, especially among mainland Chinese Christian intellectuals. This has resulted in reformed thought transitioning into a reformed church movement that is bringing about positive changes. At the same time, there are cautions to be observed within this movement.

Supporting Article

Liberalism and China’s Churches

After defining the term “liberalism,” the author introduces the liberal intellectuals, many of them city dwellers, who began joining churches and consequently have created tension between liberalism and Christian perspectives. He explores churches’ reactions to this tension and also discusses the attitude of anti-liberals toward Christianity.

Supporting Article

Urban Churches in China

A Pentecostal Case Study

An author has noted that societies being shaped by the forces of modernization and urbanization represent fertile ground for the seeds of Pentecostal revival. Menzies supports this claim in a case study that gives us the history and growth of the Li Xin Church, a large, Pentecostal house-church network.

Supporting Article

Eschatology and China’s Churches

The question of a church’s eschatology not only concerns its future but also determines how its people live in today’s world. While house churches included a brief summary of their eschatology in a 1998 document, within the theology of the official Three-Self Church eschatology lacks a working category; it finds itself situated under communist ideology as any form of it appears to be a threat to the ideology of the government. The church in China must ask itself what biblical, orthodox eschatology is and how it can be preached.

View From the Wall

Public Theology in China

Some Preliminary Reflections

The persistent lack of open government in many areas of China makes it difficult for Christians to be very different from the general population. Yet, Christians in China are citizens of God’s eternal kingdom as well as citizens of China. However, as citizens of this world, they seem to have failed to live very profoundly as citizens of the eternal world. Can the tension between these two citizenships be resolved?

Book Reviews

Scriptural Devotionals of God at Work in China

Making Pentecost Your Story: 50 Days of Reflection and Prayer by Robert Menzies
Reviewed by Peter S. Anderson

Following a brief overview of the church in China, this book provides 50 daily devotional readings covering seven weeks. Each reading begins with a well-chosen Scripture passage followed by a short story based on Dr Menzies’ own experiences with Christians in China.  

Book Reviews

Building up China’s Church

China’s Reforming Churches by Bruce P. Baugus, ed.
Reviewed by Jennifer Guo

This volume is written from the conviction that China’s need for church development is largely the need for the development of a healthy and robust presbyterianism that comes from an understanding of biblical theology of the church as articulated within the Reformed tradition. It frequently corrects common erroneous presuppositions and reveals that within China there is a surprising amount of freedom for Christians—and even for the officially illegal, unregistered churches.

Resource Corner

“Raised from Dust” and “The Only Sons “

Films by Gan Xiao’er

Two films by China-based, independent filmmaker, Gan Xiao’er.

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Brent Fulton

Brent Fulton

Brent Fulton is the founder of ChinaSource. Dr. Fulton served as the first president of ChinaSource until 2019. Prior to his service with ChinaSource, he served from 1995 to 2000 as the managing director of the Institute for Chinese Studies at Wheaton College. From 1987 to 1995 he served as founding …View Full Bio


LI Jin

LI Jin

LI Jin is a PhD student at Calvin Theological Seminary. Prior to seminary he was a PhD candidate in economic history at a Shanghai university. He writes on Christian thought for both public and Christian media outlets in mainland China and Hong Kong.  LI and  wife Mary Li Ma have coauthored articles, book chapters, and …View Full Bio


Mary Li Ma

Mary Li Ma

Mary Li Ma (MA Li) holds a PhD in sociology from Cornell University. Currently a research fellow at the Henry Institute of Christianity and Public Life at Calvin University, Dr. Ma and her husband LI Jin have coauthored articles, book chapters, and are the authors of Surviving the State, Remaking the Church: …View Full Bio