Support First Things by turning your adblocker off or by making a  donation. Thanks!

Struggle Against the Gods

Because of my legal work on behalf of groups persecuted by the Chinese government, I have been tortured three times since September 21, 2007. I have been subject to long periods of secret detention or formal imprisonment. At present, I can move freely within the bounds of a village in northern . . . . Continue Reading »

Chinese History Lessons

For most of the past three years, I have helped run a program for high school students in Hunan Province, China, who wish to study in American universities. During this time, the China Dream propaganda campaign has been in full swing. It touts virtues such as “harmony,” “democracy,” and . . . . Continue Reading »

The Vatican, China, and Evangelical Prudence

Recent remarks by the Vatican’s Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, have fueled speculation about a possible exchange of diplomatic representation between the Holy See and the People’s Republic of China. Unfortunately, the cardinal’s remarks did not address any of the serious questions that have been raised about the evangelical and prudential wisdom of such an agreement at this moment in history. Continue Reading »

China's Christian Future

( English Version | Simplified Chinese | Traditional Chinese ) At the end of the Chinese Civil War in 1949, when the Communist party defeated the Nationalists and founded the People’s Republic of China, Christians in China numbered half a million. Yet almost seventy years later, under the Chinese . . . . Continue Reading »

Civil Obedience

The Barefoot Lawyer: A Blind Man’s Fight for Justice and Freedom in China by chen guangcheng henry holt, 352 pages, $30 A nnihilating a civilization that has withstood more famines, invasions, peasant revolts, civil wars, and tyrants than historians can keep straight takes work. It can’t be done . . . . Continue Reading »

China's New Consumerism

On a chilly afternoon last October, as my son and I walked through a bustling shopping district in Xi’an, China, we passed a group of teenage girls who were chattering loudly in Mandarin. Obviously they had been shopping in a nearby mall, as several of them were carrying bags labeled with familiar names, including “Gap.” What struck me especially, though, was that one of the young women wore a t-shirt featuring a picture of Justin Bieber.Earlier that day I had given a lecture to 120 pastors from midwestern and western China, who had been brought together by the Three-Self church leadership for continuing education. In our conversations, several pastors expressed concern about a growing penchant for consumerism in the younger generation, a reality that was confirmed for me by my brief encounter with the teenagers. Continue Reading »

Filter Tag Articles