Under the government’s orders, the official publication of China’s state-sanctioned Protestant church network has begun using artwork depicting biblical characters as ancient Chinese men and women – and even showing Jesus in traditional Han attire, a religious watchdog says.
The Heavenly Wind magazine is published monthly by the National Committee of the Three-Self Patriotic Movement and the China Christian Council.
Since January, its cover art has featured “sinicized” biblical illustrations with Jesus talking to ancient Chinese characters in Chinese landscapes, Bitter Winter reported. For example, Mary was “personified as an ancient Chinese woman,” and the miracle of the five loaves and two fishes shows Jesus feeding characters “portrayed with their hair tied in traditional Chinese buns.”
Bitter Winter believes the artwork “goes well beyond the iconographic ‘inculturation’ traditionally practiced by Catholic and some other missionaries.” The magazine “has always been a good indicator of the state of ‘official’ Christianity in China,” Bitter Winter reported.
I think the man who said this hits the nail on the head:
A 70-year-old Christian from the province of Qinghai told Bitter Winter the Communist government “has always talked about de-Westernization” and “doesn’t allow Chinese people to believe in the God of foreigners.”
“But I never expected that the Lord Jesus and saints through the ages would be transformed into Chinese people,” the elderly Christian said.
Christians in the country are concerned that the government is using traditional Chinese culture to “replace the Bible and distort biblical teachings,” Bitter Winter reported.
China has been terrible in their treatment of Christians. God knows and sees all that goes on. He will repay those responsible for religious persecution. Praying that happens soon.
Psalm 121:1-2 I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.