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"Success" Under the Cross:

The Example of the Persecuted Church in China

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Despite consistent state persecution-and maybe partly because of the persecution-the number of believers in China has grown from about one million fifty years ago to probably more than eighty million today.

Every Christian would like to see the Church of Jesus Christ grow. Church growth is the norm. Nongrowth is abnormal and needs reassessment on the part of the leaders. But how does the Church grow? Churches grow as the believers share the Gospel of Jesus Christ by word of mouth and attract opportunities for this by their transformed lives. Sometimes the ordinary role of the Spirit is especially observable in times of massive growth. In some places, like in China, the Protestant church has grown a hundred times during the last fifty years (1950-2000) under adverse circumstances and a hostile environment. That environment has been one of persecution by an atheistic state.

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Issue: "The Malling of Mission: How Suburban Values Control the Church Growth Movement" May/June 2000 Vol. 9 No. 3 Page number(s): 38-43

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