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Jesus in Beijing: How Christianity Is Transforming China And Changing the Global Balance of Power

3.84  ·  Rating Details  ·  187 Ratings  ·  33 Reviews
Politics are being transformed by religion, namely in China—within the next thirty years, one-third of this potential superpower could be Christian.

If this religious transformation occurs, China would be one of the largest Christian nations in the world.

David Aikman, former Beijing bureau chief for Time, unveils this spiritual revolution, detailing the impending political-
Paperback, 418 pages
Published November 1st 2006 by Regnery Publishing (first published 2003)
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Wild Swans by Jung ChangLife and Death in Shanghai by Nien ChengMao by Jung ChangRed Azalea by Anchee MinCandy by Mian Mian
Banned CHINA Books
46th out of 55 books — 47 voters
The Last Days of Old Beijing by Michael MeyerMidnight in Peking by Paul FrenchUnsavory Elements by Tom  CarterThe Dragon's Tail by Adam WilliamsThe Last Empress by Anchee Min
Books set in BEIJING
49th out of 100 books — 10 voters

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Community Reviews

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Eustacia Tan
Jun 08, 2015 Eustacia Tan rated it really liked it
I remember reading John Sung's biography (or was it autobiography?) a few years ago. Back then, I immediately questioned the accuracy of the stories, because it seemed like miracles were being performed left, right and centre. I remember one being an unsaved woman who died, was brought back to life to accept God, before dying again. My skepticism levels went right through the roof (especially since you don't get this sort of things in Singapore).

Reading Jesus in Beijing didn't get me to believe
The other John
Mar 13, 2009 The other John rated it really liked it
This one's a look at the state of Christianity in China today (okay, six years ago), looking at how the religion has sprung back from earlier persecution and is now thriving to a greater degree than at any point in China's history. Mr. Aikman pretty much traces the history of the Chinese church through the 20th Century, highlighting the individuals who have had an impact on its development. It's an interesting tale that's easy to read. It made me feel somewhat foolish. I've lived in China, gone ...more
Feb 20, 2013 Todd rated it really liked it
Enjoyable, enlightening read.
Martin Mostek
Apr 09, 2016 Martin Mostek rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There is one boom in China which goes curiously under-reported. So David Aikman went and reported about it. In this book he presented his finding. There are millions of Christians in China, many of them in loose network of evangelical house churches. They live both in rural areas and biggest cities. Despite continuing oppression and bouts of persecution Christianity in China keeps impressive rate of growth. There may be anything between 70 and 100 millions of Christians in China - majority of th ...more
Apr 24, 2012 Brad rated it really liked it
A well-reasearched, eye-opening, sobering, and encouraging read for anyone interested in gaining a greater cultural understanding of one of the the world's greatest cultures.

David Aikman, a former *Time* magazine bureau chief in Beijing, provides a journalist's overview of China's religious (Christian) history for the purpose of asking what role might Christianity play from within China as China evolves into a major economic and world super-power.

In a talk delivered in Beijing in the summer of
Jul 19, 2012 Davis rated it it was amazing
An amazing book on the history of Christianity in China. It details the very first missionaries to arrive in the Tang Dynasty to modern state of the church. He covers China's growth of native Christianity and its resurgent lapses into extreme xenophobia. Most of the book though is spent on current leaders and movements within the underground church, both Protestant and Catholic. The book is very revealing about the state of Christianity within China's borders, and for me, many of the facts came ...more
Nov 23, 2014 James rated it it was amazing
Noted journalist and bureau chief in Beijing for Time, David Aikman has compiled an excellent portrait of Christianity in China today, ranging from its ancient roots as the destination for Nestorian Christians to the pioneering work of the Jesuits and the China Inland Mission, right to the present day where Christianity is booming across the whole country.

At the heart of this book are the stories of individual men and women who have risked everything and braved brutal torture and all manner of
Jun 03, 2009 Tom rated it liked it
I was actually surprised at this book's journalistic tone. For the most part, it attempted and maintained a disinterested outlook, merely providing the facts of the growth of Christianity (alongside other major religions) in China.

Bias crept in a few times, however, as he'd describe charismatic Christianity with much more powerful terms than he would, say, Catholicism. He also let the gloves completely come off when he tore into Bishop Ding, China's most prominent theologian (who's officially sa
Apr 12, 2016 Johns rated it it was amazing
Well-written story of the current status of Christianity in China. The author, formerly the Time magazine bureau chief in Beijing, lays out a thought-provoking thesis that the Chinese church is perfectly positioned to evangelize the Muslim world from the East and complete the geographic sweep of the Gospel around the globe to the Holy Land from which our Lord started His ministry. A compelling read that will give you insight into the church in China.
Dec 25, 2010 Pamela rated it it was amazing
This is the best Missionary book I have read so far besides Fire from Heaven. It is amazing how it is so much better for the people to develop their own governed churches without foreign interference mainly for their own protection of staying out of jail for over 20 years. I always thought it would be best to help others help themselves and then leave those people alone.

These people need prayers and I think American's need to learn how to evangelize others to become self-independent and leave.

Sep 12, 2012 Paulieanne rated it really liked it
I had a vague idea of the history of China and the history of the spread of Christianity in China, before reading this book. The author, who never professes his own faith or lack of, takes the reader through the history and the challenges to the spread of Christianity in the Communist country. As a journalist, he takes the reader through the series of events he believes were crucial to the development and spread of the Christianity. Even though it took me a while to read, I would recommend this ...more
Nov 17, 2014 Marta rated it liked it
Shelves: history, nonfiction
I was expecting a sociological analysis of the spread of Christianity in China, but most of this book consists of mini-biographies of various Chinese Christian leaders. Its interesting, but not really what I was looking for.
An excellent work by a journalist with the street credit to write a documentary on Christianity in China and it's impact. Aikman is generally optimistic about the influence of the church over the Chinese dragon, but he doesn't neglect to report details of the underground church and it's persecution. He is also effective at highlighting the unique perspectives (theological and worldview) of Chinese Christians. Highly recommended for those interested in China, global Christianity, missions, and ev ...more
Nick Woodall
Great book! Lots of great stories and statistics on Christians in China.
Tricia Culp
May 04, 2015 Tricia Culp rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book, although it was a bit dry in places. I thought the first half was the best- the history of Christianity in China through the centuries. I also enjoyed the sketches of influential Christians of the last century. The parts that are more current are getting a bit dated. Now I would like to read something really focusing on the sociology of Christianity there in the past 20 years and the state today.
May 30, 2008 Alan rated it really liked it
A very informative look at religion in China throughout its history, with a concentration on the development of Christianity today. It provides a balanced look at the differences and similarities between the official and underground churches there. It also profiles a number of key figures (church officials and leaders) that have made a major impact there.

Very helpful, though a little dry.
Jun 12, 2009 Margaret rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The history of Christianity in China made for fascinating reading. The author went to great lengths, often at risk to himself and the people with whom he was meeting, to study the church and to explain the relationship between the government and the church, especially complex since the communist take-over. I learned a lot and was amazed at much of what I read. I highly recoommend it.
Jun 07, 2008 Alana rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A book documenting the current movement of Christianity in China. I was expecting more on the idea of how it is changing the global balance of power (as stated in the title), but this was really only touched on in the last chapter. An informative read, although I wonder how many believers got in trouble after it was published...
Dec 08, 2007 Jacque rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Those interested in China's brand of Christianity
How there's two main churches in China: the one sanctioned by the Communist government, and the much larger underground church. If you want to know about the history of the Christian church in China, its leaders and martyrs, how some folks are persecuted but remain steadfast in their faith, then this book's for you.
Apr 23, 2007 Jim rated it really liked it
David Aikmen does a fine job of giving us a picture of what has been happening behind the bamboo curtain. This sort of thing reminds us of what our friend Harold Kurtz has been telling us, "The Gospel is Loose in the World." Discouraged about ministry in the postmodern west then get this book.
Apr 25, 2007 ben rated it liked it
Recommends it for: those interested in China
This is a good summary and review of Christianity in China. Sadly he is very free in giving names of people and places, which has led to several arrests of Christians there. It is long but its organization makes reading it in sections easy.
Liz Linssen
Jun 18, 2013 Liz Linssen rated it really liked it
A good introduction to Christianity in china: how it grew, key leaders and the style of christianity existing today. A worthwhile read.
Jeff Noble
Jesus in Beijing: How Christianity Is Transforming China and Changing the Global Balance of Power by David Aikman (?)
Aug 25, 2012 Karlene rated it really liked it
really enjoyed this and it helped inform me regarding sharing the gospel in Beijing a few years back.
Michelle Rader
Interesting history as well current state of the church in China. Inspiring and informative.
Sep 23, 2012 Julia rated it it was amazing
Great book. I deeply respect aikman as a writer and journalist. Truly insightful read.
Jan 12, 2008 Esther rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2007
This book was very helpful in preparing me for my trip to China in the fall of 2007.
May 11, 2009 Ike rated it liked it
Interesting because I knew little about the history of Christianity in China.
Mar 21, 2008 Judi rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bgu-books
One of the books I am reading for my class in China in April.
May 15, 2009 Judi rated it liked it
Shelves: bgu-books
Amazing story about Christianity in China in recent years.
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David Aikman, former Time magazine Beijing bureau chief, is an author, journalist, and foreign policy consultant. After more than two decades with Time magazine - reporting from more than fifty countries and interviewing world figures such as Boris Yeltson, Billy Graham, Magnuel Noriega, and Mother Teresa -- Aikman became a freelance writer and commentat
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