Resources in Book Reviews

Sep 18

Ecclesiology, History, and the Identity of the Chinese Church

A Book Review

by Kevin Xiyi Yao

Using a historical approach, this book looks at the early stages of the Three-Self Patriotic Movement (TSPM) and Chinese Protestant Christians’ responses to changing church-state relations from 1949-1958. The author proposes that to understand the conflicts between the early stages of TSPM and the Chinese church leaders, theology and Christian identity are significant factors. This work provides valuable insights to keep in mind while studying the history of Chinese Christianity.

Jun 19

A Much-Needed Update about Chinese Christianity

by LI Jin

China’s Urban Christians: A Light that Cannot Be Hidden by Brent Fulton
Reviewed by Li Jin

Due to urbanization and social change, China’s churches look different today than they did a number of years ago. Urban churches, with unusual diversity, now comprise a major part of Chinese Christianity. Fulton identifies many of the changes the church has experienced that now characterize it and discusses challenges it faces in current society.

Mar 20

Excitement, Realism, and Incisive Commentary

by Ronald Boyd-MacMillan

A review of Christ in China: An Anthology by Ronald Boyd-MacMillan

In appreciation of Tony and Frances Lambert’s 34 years of faithful service, OMF-Hong Kong has published an anthology of forty-six of Tony’s monthly analyses of the story of Christianity in China. Written between the years 1987 to 2016, these articles cover aspects of the greatest revival story of the world church of the past 50 years, as well as selections that give unique slants on the contemporary story.

Dec 19, 2016

Adopting an Unreached People Group

by Wei Ver

A review of 首要推荐的100 个国内族群 (100 Priority Unreached People Groups in China) published by Mission China 2030.

Edited by two Chinese missiologists and available only in Chinese, this prayer guide lists the top 100 unreached people groups in China with the purpose of encouraging China’s churches to adopt these groups. In addition to listing China’s minority groups, it also contains an extensive article on the status of evangelization among minority people groups.

Sep 27, 2016

Understanding and Serving in the “New China”

by Peter

A review of China’s Next Generation: New China, New Church, New World by Luis Bush, Brent Fulton, and a Christian Worker in China.

China is changing dramatically and rapidly—economically, socially, and culturally. These changes have affected the church as well. This book looks at the “New China” and the factors that have brought about the changes; it also examines how the church has entered this new society. Especially for those working with young people, who need to understand their mindset, this book provides a concise overview of key issues and influences.

Jul 11, 2016

Bringing Up Men of God

by Axin

A review of 陈织娘的一生 (A Wind in the Door) by  Mrs. Chong-Ping Tong. 

This uplifting book relates the story of Chen Zhi-Niang, an ordinary woman who raised six, world-prominent Chinese preachers. While her life was not an easy one, she learned to trust and obey Christ and experienced his leading in her life and in the lives of her sons. 

Mar 7, 2016

Quadriplegia and God

by Jeff McNair

A review of Joni: An Unforgettable Story by Joni Eareckson Tada.

As a young woman, Joni was severely injured in a diving accident that physically changed her life. While she has required the use of a wheelchair since then, the dramatic part of her story is her spiritual transformation. 

Dec 8, 2015

From Transaction to Transformation

Rediscovering the Biblical Foundations of Fund Raising

by Brent Fulton

A review of The Sower: Redefining the Ministry of Raising Kingdom Resources by R. Scott Rodin and Gary G. Hoag.

For those assigned to raising funds for the ministries they represent, this book, by seasoned fund development professionals, suggests a shift requiring a reorientation of the view of fund raising. Rather than seeing it as a process of reaping financial increase for God’s work, it should be seen as a process of sowing into the lives of God’s stewards. It is a reminder that it is God who gives the increase. 

Sep 22, 2015

A New Understanding of the Relationship between Christianity and Chinese Culture

by Andrew T. Kaiser

The Missionary's Curse and Other Tales from a Chinese Catholic Village by Henrietta Harrison.
Reviewed by Andrew Kaiser

Harrison recounts the story of Catholicism in a small village in Shanxi, from its initial arrival at the opening of the seventeenth century right up to the present. She uncovers insights regarding the cross-cultural process in China that diverge significantly from common perceptions about how Christianity and Chinese culture relate to one another. Well researched, her book challenges some of the prevailing scholarly understandings of Christianity’s encounter with Chinese culture and should cause expatriates to ask how they can best contribute to the growth of the church in China in view of the influence of globalism upon it.

Jun 26, 2015

Scriptural Devotionals of God at Work in China

by Peter Anderson

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.  

Jun 26, 2015

Building up China’s Church

by Jennifer Guo

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.

Mar 13, 2015

Refuting False Teachings by Untwisting the Scripture

by Joann Pittman

Geisler and Rhodes provide a valuable reference tool for anyone looking for help in refuting various false teachings. After discussing the definition of a cult, they give an overview of the doctrinal, sociological, and moral characteristics of cults. To untwist a Scriptural interpretation, they supply a Scripture reference that raises an important question, an explanation of the common misinterpretation of the passage, and an explanation of the correct interpretation.

Dec 22, 2014

Church Militant: Bishop Kung and Catholic Resistance in Communist Shanghai

A Book Review

by John A. Lindblom

Paul Mariani makes an essential contribution to the history of the Catholic Church in China during the twentieth-century when the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) targeted religious organizations. Through research which includes previously unreleased classified documents and his multifaceted treatment of this turbulent period, he provides a gripping narrative of the gradual, but increasingly tension-filled, showdown between the CCP and the Catholic Church in Shanghai.

Oct 6, 2014

When the Well Runs Dry:

Prayer beyond the Beginnings

A Book Review

by Tricia Bølle

After many years of devoted prayer and Christian living, we sometimes find it difficult to feel God’s presence. In our pursuit of a deeper prayer life, we often come up dry and wanting. Fr. Green provides an important understanding of prayer for many Christians who start to wonder why their prayers have begun to feel empty. Using the examples of some of the great mystics of the Christian tradition, he imparts to us some of their wisdom so we can better understand the journey of the interior life and the true call to faith in prayer that the Lord gives us.

Jul 21, 2014

Eastern Versus Western Learning Approaches

Book Review

by Lisa Nagle

Cultural Foundations of Learning: East and West by Jin Li.
Reviewed by Lisa Nagle

There are deep cultural differences between Eastern and Western societies regarding learning and development. The notion of whether creativity is learned or not is just one of these. This book explores some of the differing approaches to learning found in these cultures and concludes with a look at them in the twenty-first century.

Mar 13, 2014

The Christian Faith in Chinese Culture

A Book Review

by G. Wright Doyle

Confucius, the Buddha, and Christ by Ralph R. Covell
Confronting Confucian Understandings of the Christian Doctrine of Salvation: A Systematic Theological Analysis of the Basic Problems in the Confucian-Christian Dialogue by Paulos Huang
Reviewed by G. Wright Doyle

Covell traces the history of the gospel in China from the Nestorians up to about 1980 and ways in which foreign missionaries, and then Chinese Christians, tried to express the gospel in terms which were, or were not, readily accessible to the people they hoped to reach. Huang's aim is to explain how different types of Confucianists have understood, and responded to the Christian doctrine of salvation.

Dec 9, 2013

Closing a Perception/Reality Gap

A Book Review

by Brent Fulton

Religious Freedom in China: Policy, Administration, and Regulation; A Research Handbook by Kim-kwong Chan and Eric R. Carlson
Reviewed by Brent Fulton

This volume provides reliable information about religious policy and its implementation in China. 

Sep 20, 2013

God at Work in a Student Leader

A Book Review

by Laurie Michaels

A Heart for Freedom by Chai Ling. Tyndale Momentum; 1st edition, 2011, 370 pp, ISBN-10:1414362463, ISBN-13: 978-1414362465; $19.04 at

Chai Ling gives an eye-witness account of the 1989 student movement and massacre in Tiananmen Square in Beijing. She speaks of her early life, her involvement in the student movement and its influences upon her as well as her coming to faith in Christ. She continues to honestly address the questions she puts to God and her relationship with him.

Jun 24, 2013

Preparing for Chinese Culture

A Book Review

by Mark Batluck

This practical exposition includes discussions regarding ways of thinking about culture, first encounters between Americans and Chinese as well as verbal and non-verbal communication. Four stages of awareness as one progresses through understanding culture are explored along with an explanation of the importance of context.

Apr 15, 2013

Following the Servant Role of Jesus

by Mary Ann Cate

Cross-Cultural Servanthood: Serving the World in Christlike Humility by Duane Elmer. IVP Books, 2006, 212 pages. ISBN-10: 0830833781; ISBN-13: 978-0830833788; paperback, $12.68 or Kindle edition $9.99 at

Reviewed by Mary Ann Cate

Jan 7, 2013

Listening to the Heart

A Book Review

by Andrea Klopper

Factory Girls: Voices from the Heart of Modern China by Leslie T. Chang. Picador, 2010, ISBN-10: 033044736X, ISBN-13: 978-0330447362; 320 pages; paper $10.88; Kindle edition $11.99 at Amazon. (Note: Various editions are available with a slightly different title, dates of publication and number of pages.)

Reviewed by Andrea Klopper

Nov 5, 2012

Partnership Field Guide

by Mak Hon Chiu

Partnership Field Guide: A Step-by-step Process for Building Ministry Partnerships, visionSynergy, 60 pages. This document was prepared by visionSynergy for the participants of The Third Lausanne Congress on World Evangelization held in Cape Town, South Africa, October 2010 and can be found at:

Reviewed by Mak Hon Chiu

Sep 7, 2012

The Dragon's Gift

The Real Story of China in Africa

by Samuel Chiang

The reviewer discusses the author's argument that China has created her own path for aid, how this is working in Africa and what it means for the continent.

Jul 25, 2012

God is Red

by Kay Danielson

Liao Yiwu interviewed Christians in Yunnan Province and other parts of China to hear their stories and help the world understand the true spirit of China. In so doing, he also tells the story of the power of the gospel to change hearts and provide sustaining grace.

Dec 23, 2011

Salt and Light

Lives of Faith That Shaped Modern China

by Daniel Bays

Dr. Bays reviews this three volume series of 27 biographical sketches of Chinese Christians of the modern era. These books provide reliable biographical information for anyone interested in the historical origins and early paths of development of recent Christian growth in China.

Sep 10, 2011

Redeemed by Fire

The Rise of Popular Christianity in Modern China

by Brent Fulton

The author fills in the details of the often overlooked history of China's indigenous church. He looks at prominent figures in the early church, discusses his thesis that it took on a millennial character which came to define early Chinese Christianity and addresses its relationship with the foreign missionary establishment. He brings his account of the indigenous church up to the present and takes a look at what he sees for its future.

Jun 17, 2011

Glorification of Educational Success

by Lisa Nagle

Governing Educational Desire: Culture, Politics, and Schooling in China by Andrew Kipnis. University of Chicago Press (Chicago: 2011), 174 pp. ISBN 13:978-0-226-43755-2; $27.50.

Reviewed by Lisa Nagle

Chinese families have a deep cultural desire for education.

Apr 21, 2011

Constructing China's Jerusalem

Christians, Power, and Place in Contemporary Wenzhou

by Ronald Yu

Nanlai Cao, a research assistant professor at the Hong Kong Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences, gives us a unique and comprehensive analysis of the Wenzhou revival. His study pursuits in both China and Western metropolises, as well as his intimate connection with Wenzhou (native family connections through his mother and grandparents) offers him a perspective not otherwise readily possible.

Jan 17, 2011

China's New Confucianism

Politics and Everyday Life in a Changing Society

by G. Wright Doyle

Daniel A. Bell, China's New Confucianism: Politics and Everyday Life in a Changing Society. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2008. ISBN 978-0-691-13690-5; hardcover; 340 pages, including two appendices, notes, and bibliography.

Reviewed by G. Wright Doyle

Oct 11, 2010

Country Driving

A Journey through China from Farm to Factory

by Wayne Martindale

Country Driving: A Journey through China from Farm to Factory by Peter Hessler. Harper (New York: 2010), 438pp. ISBN 978-0-06-180409-0, $27.99.

Reviewed by Wayne Martindale

Apr 16, 2010

The Church in Henan

by Tony Lambert

Henan: The Galilee of China (Volume 2 of the "Fire & Blood" series) by Paul Hattaway

Reviewed by Tony Lambert

Nov 13, 2009

China: Ancient Culture, Modern Society

by Tricia Bølle

China: Ancient Culture, Modern Society by Peter Xiaoming Yu and G. Wright Doyle. 

Reviewed by Tricia Bølle

Jun 19, 2009

True Stewardship

by Kerry Schottelkorb

Stewards in the Kingdom: A Theology of Life in All Its Fullness by R. Scott Rodin. 

Reviewed by Kerry Schottelkorb

Mar 21, 2009

China Road

A Journey into the Future of a Rising Power

by Kay Danielson

China Road: A Journey into the Future of a Rising Power by Rob Gifford. 

Reviewed by Kay Danielson

Dec 6, 2008

Will the Boat Sink the Water?

by Brad Burgess

Will the Boat Sink the Water?: The Life of China's Peasants by Chen Guidi and Wu Chuntao. 

Reviewed by Brad Burgess

Oct 10, 2008

The China beyond Bicycles and Baozi*

by Andrew T. Kaiser

China Vignettes: An Inside Look at China by Dominic Barton with Mei Ye. 

Reviewed by Andrew Kaiser

Jun 17, 2008

Pure Gold

by Wayne Martindale

Eric Liddell: Pure Gold by David McCasland. 

Reviewed by Wayne Martindale

Mar 18, 2008

Team Dysfunction

by Gary Waldron

The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni.  

Reviewed by Gary Waldron

Dec 9, 2007

Kingdom Business for Transformation

by Brian Williams

God is at Work by Ken Eldred.

Reviewed by Brian Williams

Sep 10, 2007

Preparing for the Future

A Tool for Strategic Planning

by Tiger Lily

China 2020: Future Scenarios, A workshop report prepared by The National Bureau of Asian Research; held February, 2007 in Warrenton, Virginia. Forthcoming from ChinaSource.

Reviewed by Tiger Lily

Jul 14, 2007

The Human Side of China's Staggering Transformation

by Chan-Kei Thong

Oracle Bones: A Journey between China's Past and Present by Peter Hessler. 

Reviewed by Chan-Kei Thong

Apr 12, 2007

Spiritual Leadership

by Jess Nelson and Chuanhang Shan

Spiritual Leadership: Moving People on to God's Agenda by Henry T. Blackaby and Richard Blackaby. 

Reviewed by Jess Nelson and Chuanhang Shan

Nov 9, 2006

When East Meets West in the Market Place

by Brent Fulton

One Billion Customers: Lessons from the Front Lines of Doing Business in China by James McGregor. New York: Free Press, 2005, 312 pp., ISBN: 0743258398, US$27.00.

Reviewed by Brent Fulton

Sep 22, 2006

Flourishing in Demanding Environments

by Steve Spinella

Stress and Trauma Handbook: Strategies for Flourishing in Demanding Environments edited by John Fawcett. 

Reviewed by Steve Spinella

Jun 20, 2006

Children: At the Heart of Mission

by Ian A.

Children—the Great Omission? by Dan Brewster and Patrick McDonald. 

Reviewed by Ian A.

Dec 8, 2005

Living as Ambassadors of Christ

by Daniel Eyler

Walking with the Poor: Principles and Practices of Transformational Development by Bryant Myers. Maryknoll, NY, Orbis Books, 1999. 279 pages with index; soft cover; ISBN: 1570752753; $22.00.

A book review by Daniel Eyler

Sep 22, 2005

Into China and Beyond: A Timeless Journey of Faith

by Samuel Chiang

Jesus in Beijing: How Christianity is Transforming China and Changing the Global Balance of Power by David Aikman. 

The Heavenly Man: The Remarkable True Story of Chinese Christian Brother Yun by Paul Hattaway. 

Back To Jerusalem: Three Chinese House Church Leaders Share Their Vision to Complete The Great Commission by Brother Yun, Peter Xu Yongze and Enoch Wang with Paul Hattaway. 

Book reviews by Samuel E. Chiang.

Jun 26, 2005

The Church's Great Asset

by Wayne Martindale

The Rise of Christianity: How the Obscure, Marginal Jesus Movement Became the Dominant Religious Force in the Western World in a Few Centuries by Rodney Stark. 

Reviewed by Wayne Martindale

Mar 26, 2005

Opposing the Unjust

by Scott Becker

"A Letter from Birmingham Jail," by Martin Luther King Jr., The Christian Century, June 12, 1963, p. 767.

Reviewed by Scott Becker