Arthur J. Villasanta – Fourth Estate Contributor
Midland, TX, United States (4E) – China is escalating its “War on Christianity” or its “War on Christ” as part of a rampant campaign to “Sinicize” all religions, thereby making them subservient to the atheistic communist government that rules this officially atheistic country.
Experts predict China will have the world’s largest Christian population in a few decades.
China’s communists continue to relentlessly persecute the country’s 67 million Christians; raze Christian churches; burn Bibles; destroy crosses while forcing Christians to sign papers renouncing their faith, according to pastors and a group that monitors religion in China.
This reign of terror is part and parcel of a long-running effort by China to “Sinicize” Christianity and other religions by demanding loyalty to the atheist Communist Party of China (CPC) and eliminating any challenge to its power.
There are some 200 million religious believers in China’s population of 1.4 billion. Of this total, 38 million are Protestants.
The closure of churches in central Henan province and a prominent house church in Beijing in recent weeks represents a “significant escalation” of the crackdown, said Bob Fu of the U.S.-based group China Aid.
“The international community should be alarmed and outraged for this blatant violation of freedom of religion and belief,” he said.
Fu also provided video of piles of burning Bibles, as well as forms stating the signatories had renounced their Christian faith. He said this is the first time since Mao Zedong’s murderous 1966-1976 Cultural Revolution that Christians had been compelled to make such declarations under pain of expulsion from school and the loss of welfare benefits.
Xi Jinping, who had the CPC appoint him president for life, is waging the most ruthless systematic suppression of Christianity since religious freedom was written into the Chinese constitution in 1982.
He sees Christianity as a Western threat. “We must resolutely guard against overseas infiltrations via religious means,” said Xi in 2016. Xi also said any community that places any entity above himself is not putting the Party first.
“Chinese leaders have always been suspicious of the political challenge or threat that Christianity poses to the Communist regime,” said Xi Lian, a scholar of Christianity in China at Duke University.
“Under Xi, this fear of Western infiltration has intensified and gained a prominence that we haven’t seen for a long time.”
Chinese law requires religious believers to worship only in congregations registered with the CPC, but many millions belong to underground or house churches that defy government restrictions.
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