Well, well, well, the fascists are at it again. The Chinese government has put a band on the selling of Bibles. China, a state supposedly in favor of the freedom of religion, is regressing back to its old Maoist ways. The body of Christ in China is under attack.
According to CNN and The New York Times earlier in April, the Chinese government blocked online sales of Bibles outside of certain Bible Studies and illustrated books.
Before the block, it was difficult for Chinese Christians to obtain Bibles in brick and mortar stores, but Christians found a “loophole” by purchasing Bibles online. Interestingly enough, this new law does not pertain to the Quran, Buddhist texts nor Taoist texts. It is a law especially against the Christian Holy Bible, according to the Baptist Press.
China has always had a tight grip on the distribution of Bibles. Only state-run churches can print and distribute Bibles. According to CNN, “China is preparing for a ‘major shift’ in how it governs society and sanctions religion.”
What’s in play? Well, religions must now “adapt themselves to the socialist society.” The expectation is that “religious believers and non-believers respect each other, and live in harmony, committing themselves to reform and opening up and the socialist modernization and contribution to the realization of the Chinese dream of rejuvenation.” That is an official statement made by the Communist party in China.
Part of the implementation of this new Communist policy is to create a Chinese version of the Bible. The new version will be more “Sinicized”, meaning “to make Chinese or bring under Chinese Influence.”
What does this mean for the church in China? This is more than likely the first of many laws that will directly impact the church in a negative way. Freedom of religion means that you have the right to your religious practices so long as it is not harming others or infringing upon other citizen’s individual rights. Freedom of religion to the Chinese government seems to be defined quite oppositely.
One must question why the Bible, specifically, is being banned. Is it because only with Christ do human beings truly find freedom? Or, maybe it’s because the Bible does not make the state the god of the people. If that seems extreme, watch this to get an idea of what living under Maoist China was like.
That video is just one reason the Bible and real Christianity doesn’t work in socialist societies. A Christian’s loyalty and devotion is to God first, not himself, not his family and certainly not the government that rules him. The Chinese government cannot have Christians reading the Living Word and living what it teaches, that would be counterproductive to its plan.
One thing that makes the Bible so wonderful is that it transcends culture, the law of the land, and race. Jesus Christ preached the Kingdom of God more than he preached about getting into Heaven; a clue to the Kingdom’s importance. Jesus did not preach the that the government or state was at hand. He preached that ‘the Kingdom of God is at hand.” Christians are to have a healthy fear of the Lord and are to worship only God. Due to what they teach and preach socialists cannot and will not sign off on that kind of thinking going on amongst the people.
The words in the Bible are the life and the way of every Christian. The Bible is not meant to be made to fit into a culture, the culture is to align with the Word of God.
Pray for the Church in China.