For detailed information on the Primary and Secondary Cultural Characteristics, go here.
- Stats for China
Confucius made China a Particularist society, saying it is wrong to report a father’s theft. Many Chinese still resentful of cruel treatment by Japan in WWII. Chinese society does not have a dominant religion. Chinese often mix philosophies to justify what they want. Restaurant chains such as KFC have twice the space here because everyone eats as a group.
Top 25 Stats
Total Population- 1.4 Billion (1st); 105 M Christians (4th); Total Evangelicals- 75 M (2nd); 5.0 M (19th); Total Gospel Decisions- 315,000 (21st).
Fastest Growing Religion
Human Development Index
China has 500 indigenous, distinct ethnic groups: East Asians (93.1%, including Chinese, Chinese-Hui, Manchu, Mongolian, Korean, Japanese, Taiwanese); Southeast Asian (3.3%, including Miao/Hmong, Tai, Yao-Mien, Bouyei, and others); Tibetan/Himalayan (2.5%); Turkic (1%, mostly Uyghur); Other (0.1%, including Western, Iranian-Median, Malay, African, Arab, Jews).
Mandarin Chinese, Local languages in 5 autonomous regions
Maoist/Marxist economics from 1948; Since 1978, more practical “Chinese Socialism.” More relaxed policies on agriculture, industry, business; World's 2nd largest economy. Living standards raised in last 3 decades, especially in coastal areas and large cities. Issues: Environment, healthcare, property ownership, urbanization, resource needs, others. Issues: Corruption, drug and human trafficking, unjust businesses, and human rights abuses.
History / Politics
China is world's most populous nation and 3rd largest in area. Communist party gained control in 1949, ousting US-backed Chiang-Kai Shek regime. Cultural Revolution of 1966-76 under Mao resulted in perhaps 20 million deaths. After Mao, major reform occurred; Government still hard on political, ethnic, religious dissent. More extensive reforms since 1990’s eased some restrictions, but state still controls lives. Greater opposition to corruption has occurred in the last 15 years. Ethnic unrest in the more Muslim west, and Tibet. Largest human migration ever after 2000 with 250 million rural people going to cities. China has an enormous issue with air and water pollution due to growth and its many people. One-child policy and cultural value of sons caused millions of girl abortions and infanticides. The result is a dramatic over-abundance of males to females and fewer workers. One-child policy often causes discipline issues; Boys are referred to as “Little Emperors.” Northeast China- Has 120 million people and about 8% Christians. Near Russia and Korea; Origin of Manchu people who ruled China from 1644 to 1911. About 30,000 North Koreans escape to this area each year; Many are exploited by Chinese. About a third of the Koreans in this area are Christians and the church has grown well. North Central China- Has about 173 million people and 8% are Christians. Beijing and the rule of the country is from this region. This is the area of the fastest growth in China; Catholics are also strong here. Because this area is the seat of the government, persecution tends to be stronger here. Northwest China- About 40 million live here and 5% are Christians. Christian compassion in this impoverished area has caused many to convert. Many minorities live here, such as Tibetans, Hui, Dongxiang, and Bonan. East China- More than 400 million live here and about 10% are Christians. Nanjing is here and is a particularly important city and oureach for other areas of China. Shanghai is most populous city in China, has largest port, and is a major financial center. Central China- Has 250 million people and about 10% are Christian. This has been a large area for the growth of the church, particularly house churches. Hunan province was Mao’s birthplace and it has been more resistant to the Gospel. South and Southwest China- About 350 million live here and only 4.5% are Christians. Region has many issues: corruption, crime, immoral sex, and drug and human trafficking. There are many minorities in this region who are unreached or barely reached. Three Outer Autonomous Regions- 48 million live here and only 6.6% are Christians. These includes Inner Mongolia, Tibet, and Xinjiang Uyghur. More unrest and even violence here due to suppression of the minorities in region. More Mongolians live in Inner Mongolia than in Mongolia. Uyghur once had a small church here, but persecution left only a few hundred Christians. Most Uyghur and indigenous people in Xinjiang are Muslim. Tibet has been strongly resistant to the Gospel due to its center of Lamaistic Buddhism.
Government tried to eradicate religion during Cultural Revolution, but churches grew anyway. A lot of this growth occurred through house churches, and continues to this day. Since 1978, government has tried to control the church by requiring them to register. Two churches: Registered, official, weak Gospel; Fervent, unregistered house churches. In 35 years, Evangelicals have grown from about 2.7 million to 75 million! Government is unable to take care of all social needs; Christians often step in to help. Many Catholics are passionate Believers, but are underground due to their refusal to register. Many educated Chinese come to faith while traveling overseas, then share their faith at home. There are not enough Bibles and leadership training for the newly converted. Cults and false religions have gained followers because of lack of Bibles/training materials.
Growth of Chinese church has been the greatest in history; Pray that the growth continues. Pray for growing economic, political, and religious freedom. Persecution of Christians is still severe in some areas. One million Chinese are employed by government to monitor, censor and block Internet sites. Pray that the gospel can get over, around and through the "Great Firewall of China." Pray that persecuted and disenfranchised ethnic minorities may also be reached for Christ. Pray that Christians will continue to help with the disabled, depressed, and minorities. Pray that more access to Bibles and training materials can occur. Pray that as the Chinese people become more prosperous, they will stay strong in their faith.