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Thursday, March 04, 2021
church & ministry
Bible Day: Symposium on “Reading the Bible from a Chinese Perspective” Held in Guangzhou
The exhibition of Chinese Bibles conducted in Guangzhou, Guangdong on December 12, 2020The exhibition of Chinese Bibles conducted in Guangzhou, Guangdong on December 12, 2020

A symposium on “Reading the Bible from the Perspective of Chinese People” was held in Guangzhou On December 14, as one of a series of activities of the Chinese Church Bible Day. 

In the early 1990s, the second Sunday (including Saturday) in December was designated as Bible Day in the Chinese Church.

According to Guangzhou CC&TSPM, the symposium was conducted by using both live and video presentations. More than ten representatives from academic and church circles had in-depth exchanges on the theme of “Reading the Bible from the Perspective of Chinese people”.

On behalf of experts, Tang Xiaofeng, researcher of the Institute of World Religions and director of the Christian Research Office of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences,  delivered a speech at the opening ceremony. Tang stated that as the basis of Christian belief, the Bible was of great theoretical significance to religious teaching and interdisciplinary research, and of great academic significance to the study of the communication history of Christianity. So it was of great practical significance to study how to read, explain, and interpret the Scriptures from the perspective of Chinese people in the new era.

Rev. Shan Weixiang, vice president and director-general of the China Christian Council, Prof. Tang Xiaofeng, researcher of the Institute of World Religions under the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Rev. Yue Qinghua, president of Fujian Theological Seminary and other experts and scholars from Beijing, Shanghai, Fujian, Zhejiang, Jiangsu, Guangdong, and other places made key speeches.

In his keynote speech, Rev. Shan expounded on the importance of reading the Bible from a Chinese perspective by analyzing the influence of early Christian theological thought. He shared on the interaction between the way of reading the Bible and the construction of theological thought, and the way of reading and interpreting the Bible in the new era. Pastor Shan pointed out that “a perspective based on the Sinicization of the Scriptures” is an important basis for the Sinicization of Christianity.

In the early period of Christianity’s entry into China, theological thought was inevitably influenced by western thought and culture, so it was difficult to realize “Sinicization”. In order to realize the Sinicization of Christianity, we must explain and interpret the Scriptures with Chinese thinking, traditional Chinese culture, Confucian classics, and Oriental Humanistic Thoughts, so as to construct the theological thought with Chinese characteristics.

Based on the conclusions of history and external textual research, Tang discussed the history of the formation and dissemination of the Bible in the emergence and development of Christianity, reflecting on the revelation brought by the holy book and its dissemination.

- Translated by Nicolas Cao

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