The Church in Asia Post-1582

The Catholic and Orthodox Christians martyred in China in the Boxer Rebellion (1899-1901).  Photo credit:  Holy Transfiguration Monastery in Brookline, Massachusetts.  The year 1582 AD is significant because Jesuit missionary Matteo Ricci arrived in the Portuguese colony of Macau to begin Catholic missionary work in China.  Meanwhile, the Mongol kingdoms were in decline.


the church in asia post-1582

The selection of perspectives on church history in this section has been guided by three factors: (1) to demonstrate that Christianity has not been a “white man’s religion”; (2) the study of empire as a recurring motif in Scripture by recent biblical studies scholars; and (3) explorations of biblical Christian ethics on issues of power and polity, to understand how Christians were faithful to Christ or not.  Christian relational ethics continues a Christian theological anthropology that began with reflection on the human nature of Jesus, and the human experience of biblical Israel.

Messages and Essays on the Church in Asia Post-1582

The Role of Jesus in Revolution and the Pursuit of Justice this is an evangelistic message that highlights the Christian-led and Christian-influenced non-violent resistance movements throughout the world in the 20th century.  They show the connections and spiritual vitality of Christian faith under empire or empire-like oppression.  Highlights the Korean Independence Movement against Imperial Japan, the Indian Independence Movement against Imperial Britain, and the Filipino People Power Movement against the U.S.-backed dictator Ferdinand Marcos.

Jesus in the Chinese & Chinese-American Experience (ppt)

Jesus in the Filipino & Filipino-American Experience (ppt)

Jesus in the Indian & Indian-American Experience (tbd)

Jesus in the Japanese & Japanese-American Experience

Jesus in the Korean & Korean-American Experience

Jesus in the Vietnamese & Vietnamese-American Experience

The Impact of Jesus in Asia:  Monologues of Asian Christians

Jesus in Asian-America: A Call to Mission

Christian Faith in Asia and Asian-America: Filipino, Korean, Chinese

Reflections on the Japanese Theology of Jesus' Suffering (TBD)

How Jesus Atones for My Shame (Honor-Shame blog, Nov 11, 2015) a short summary of the presentation below

Why Penal Substitution Damages Asian-Americans a presentation contrasting guilt-oriented and shame-oriented persons, and how they tend to interact with two different atonement theories:  penal substitution and medical substitution. See the Atonement section for more resources and explanations.

Medical Substitutionary Atonement, Personal Healing, and Social Justice a presentation given at the Honor-Shame Conference 2017, a gathering of missionaries, scholars, and ministry practitioners, and short Youtube video (4.5 min)

Stories and Spirituality: How the God Engages Human Evil

Stories and Spirituality: About How the God Relates to Us

Other Books and Articles on the Church in Asia Post-1582

The Church of the East 431 AD resources exploring the Syriac-speaking church that is sometimes seen through the lens of Nestorius, a characterization which has been recently challenged

The Oriental Orthodox Church 451 AD resources exploring the churches which upheld the Miaphysite language of Jesus’ one “physis” while the pro-Chalcedonian Churches (Constantinople and Rome) upheld two “physeis.” The selections below are guided by the attempt to understand the schism that occurred at the Council of Chalcedon in 451 AD. This includes the Egyptian Coptic, Armenian, Syrian, Ethiopian, Eritrean, and Indian Malankaran Churches.

Singapore National Heritage Board, Christianity in Asia: Sacred Art and Visual Splendour (Google Arts and Culture) a beautiful collection of Christian art from Asia; see also Christianity in Asia: Sacred Art and Visual Splendour (Asian Civilisations Museum, Singapore) now a series of YouTube videos presented by the Museum

HonorShame (website) resources for Majority World ministry

Inheritance: The Intersection of Faith and Culture (website)

Samuel Hugh Moffett, A History of Christianity in Asia, Volume 1 (Amazon book, Apr 1998) and Volume 2 (Amazon book, Mar 2005) (Amazon book, Apr 1998) and volume 2 (Amazon book, Mar 2005)

Paul Freston, Evangelicals and Politics in Asia, Africa, and Latin America (Amazon book, 2001, 2003) and pdf book

Philip Jenkins, The Lost History of Christianity: The Thousand-Year Golden Age of the Church in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia-and How It Died (Amazon book, Nov 3, 2009)

David Halloran Lumsdaine, Evangelical Christianity and Democracy in Asia (Amazon book, 2009) and pdf book

Aziz Atiya, History of Eastern Christianity (Amazon book, Jan 1, 2010) written by a Coptic Christian, surveys Copts and Ethiopians, along with other Oriental Orthodox Churches in Asia:  Syrians, Nestorians, Armenians, and Indians

Peter C. Phan, Christianities in Asia (Amazon book, 2011)

Scott W. Sunquist, Explorations in Asian Christianity: History, Theology, and Mission (Amazon book, May 23, 2017)

Helpful Resources: China

Daniel H. Bays, Christianity in China: From the Eighteenth Century to the Present (Amazon book, 1999)

Wikipedia, Li Tim-Oi (1907 - 1999) the first woman to be ordained an Anglican priest, in Macau in 194

Hieromonk Damascene, Christ the Eternal Tao (Amazon book, 2004)

Liao Yiwu, God Is Red: The Secret Story of How Christianity Survived and Flourished in Communist China (Amazon book, 2011)

Daniel H. Bays, A New History of Christianity in China (Amazon book, 2012)

Ian Johnson, The Brave Catholics of China (The New York Review of Books, Mar 6, 2014)

Timothy C. Morgan, China Frees Gao Zhisheng: Top 10 Lawyer Now Country's Persecuted Conscience (Christianity Today, Aug 7, 2014)

Justin Tse, It Has Always Been Students and Clergy and Catholic Social Teaching - Hong Kong Protests (blog, Sep 29, 2014)

Jack Jenkins, Why Christians Are Helping Lead Hong Kong's Pro-Democracy Movement (Think Progress, Oct 12, 2014) and Matthew Bell, Christian Take a Prominent Role in Hong Kong Protests (PRI, Oct 12, 2014)

Ian Johnson, China’s Unstoppable Lawyers: An Interview with Teng Biao (New York Review of Books, Oct 19, 2014)

Wenzhou, Religion in China: Cracks in the Atheist Edifice (Economist, Nov 1, 2014)

Melanie Kirkpatrick, Chen Guangcheng, the Voice of China's Voiceless The 'Blind Lawyer' recounts his fight against Communism's corruptions (Christianity Today, Mar 20, 2015)

Initium Media, The Work of Lawyer Zhang Kai: ‘I Have God as My Backer’ (China Change, Aug 31, 2015)

Justin Tse, By Participating in the Umbrella Movement, the Eastern Catholic Church’s Gutsyness Inspired Vancouver’s Younger Chinese Evangelicals (Patheos, Dec 16, 2016) 

Li Ma and Jin Li, Surviving the State, Remaking the Church: A Sociological Portrait of Christians in Mainland China (Studies in Chinese Christianity) (Amazon book, Dec 11, 2017) and book review by Wang Jun and Richard Cook, The Shaping of Christianity in China Today (China Source, Jun 11, 2018)  

Helpful Resources: India

Vinod Shah, What Motivated the Early Christian Health Missions? Anatomy of Transformation in India (presentation, May 29, 2005)

Susan Billington Harper, In the Shadow of the Mahatma: Bishop V. S. Azariah and the Travails of Christianity in British India (Studies in the History of Christian Missions (Amazon book, Feb 11, 2009) and Wikipedia, Vedanayagam Samuel Azariah (Wikipedia article) about the Anglican bishop in India who was called "enemy number one" by Gandhi 

Chandran Nair, There’s a Place in India Where Religions Coexist Beautifully and Gender Equality Is Unmatched (Huffington Post, Apr 6, 2016) re: Kerala, India

Helpful Resources: Japan

Wikipedia, The Twenty Six Martyrs of Japan (wikipedia article) at Nagasaki, 1622

Uwe Siemon-Netto, J.S. Bach in Japan (First Things, Jun 2000)

John Dougill, In Search of Japan's Hidden Christians: A Story of Suppression, Secrecy and Survival (Amazon book, Apr 2012) 

Galina Besstremyannaya and Saint Herman of Alaska Brotherhood, Saint Nicholas of Japan (Orthodox Christian, 2012) and Paul Sawabe (Orthodox Wiki)

Bo Tao, The Peacemaking Efforts of a Reverse Missionary: Toyohiko Kagawa Before Pearl Harbor (International Bulletin of Missionary Research, Jul 2013)

Angela Ambrogetti, The Story of Japan's Hidden Christians Emerges from the Vatican Archives (Catholic News Agency, Sep 17, 2015)

William J. Farge, A Christian Samurai: The Trials of Baba Bunko (Amazon book, Apr 2016) 

Jonathan Clements, Christ’s Samurai (Amazon book, Apr 2017) See also Wikipedia, The Shimabara Rebellion (wikipedia article) from 1637 - 1638 consisting largely of Catholic peasants, leading to the prohibition against Christian faith. 

Helpful Resources: Korea

Robert E. Buswell Jr., Christianity in Korea (Amazon book, Dec 30, 2005) 

Don Baker, Korean Spirituality (Amazon book, Apr 1, 2008) 

Timothy S. Lee, Born Again: Evangelicalism in Korea (Amazon book, 2010) 

Sung-Deuk Oak, The Making of Korean Christianity: Protestant Encounters with Korean Religions, 1876-1915 (Amazon book, Sep 3, 2013) 

Nicholas Harkness, Songs of Seoul: An Ethnography of Voice and Voicing in Christian South Korea (Amazon book, 2014) 

Paul Chang, Protest Dialectics: State Repression and South Korea's Democracy Movement, 1970-1979 (Amazon book, 2015) highlights the role of Korean churches in the democracy movement of the 1970's

Reera Yoo, Jubilee Project Shines a Light on Seoul's Red-Light Districts (Mar 6, 2015) 

Helpful Resources: Malaysia

Albert Sundararaj Walters, Issues in Christian-Muslim Relations: A Malaysian Christian Perspective (Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations, Jul 2, 2007)

Vincent Bevins, Christian Preachers' Disappearance in Malaysia Stokes Fears of Crackdown on Religious Minorities (The Guardian, Jun 6, 2017)

Southeast Asia Correspondent, Highest Court in Malaysia to Hear Appeal of Christian Converts from Islam (Morning Star News, Feb 23, 2018)

Morning Star News Southeast Asia Correspondent, Christians in Malaysia to Fight for Rights after Court Ruling on Conversion (Christian Headlines, Feb 28, 2018)

Helpful Resources: Philippines

Monica Allarey Mercado, People Power: The Greatest Democracy Ever Told: The Philippine Revolution of 1986 (Amazon book, 1986) contains the famous photograph of Catholic nuns who marched in the streets of Manila during the Philippines' People Power Revolution.  The Catholic Church played a large role in supporting Corazon Aquino, and overturning Ferdinand Marcos, a dictator propped up by the US, and his wife Imelda.  Aquino, devout follower of Jesus, became the first female President of any Asian nation. 

Steven Shirley, Guided By God: The Legacy of the Catholic Church in Philippine Politics (Amazon book, Sep 23, 2004)

Peter C. Phan, Christianities in Asia (Amazon book, 2011) see the chapter by Jose Mario C. Francisco, 'The Philippines'

Leah MarieAnn Klett, Missionaries Share Surprising Way Philippines Drug War Has Spurred Growth of Christianity (Christian Post, Feb 12, 2018)

Helpful Resources: Singapore

Li Ming Dennis Lum, The Practice of Prophecy: An Empirical-Theological Study of Pentecostals in Singapore (Amazon book, 2018)

the church in asia: untold stories of church and empires

church and empire: reflections on faithfulness and compromise: topics