Human Rights Violations in China Religious Persecution in China

Rejoicing in the Holy Spirit at a Pentecostal Rally

“When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place.”

I recently participated in a Pentecostal rally held by several local churches to celebrate Pentecost Sunday. This was my first time at a Pentecostal rally. As Acts 2:1 tells us, “When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place.” Young teenagers and their parents and grandparents stayed together, praying, singing, enthusiastically worshiping and feeling the Holy Spirit. Six pastors stood face-to-face forming a path for people to go through. People immersed themselves in prayers with all the pastors. “All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.” (Acts 2:4)

We praised God and enjoyed His Amazing Grace. I also prayed for the Holy Spirit to guide and protect Christians in China. Pentecostal churches are illegal in China, but in recent years they have been growing fast, and so has persecution. In 2013, four women and three men were sentenced from three to seven-and-a-half years in prison, because they preached at illegal Pentecostal congregations in Henan Province. This year, 10 worshippers were put in jail for seven days, because during their worship services, they cried and shouted for God. The police believed that they were members of a cult and the church was an illegal organization.

In China, Pentecostal worshippers are marginalized. Overt manifestations of being moved by the Holy Spirit (such as speaking in tongues, praying loudly en masse, healing practices) are frowned upon by the government-sanctioned church (TSPM). TSPM churches view the Pentecostal movement much like a superstition rather than a true religion. More persecution came from the government, because Pentecostals stress God’s miraculous and supernatural power, healing and prophecy. These beliefs that truly come from the gospel of Jesus Christ seriously run antagonistic to the Communist ideology.

China’s new President, Xi Jinghping, has re-asserted the Communist Party’s absolute rule and is actively promoting Chinese cultural traditions that contribute to ensure the Communist Party’s supremacy.

As a Christian who firmly believes in the Bible as God’s word, I believe in Pentecost and worship the supremacy of Jesus Christ, an all-powerful deity who is one with God and the Holy Spirit and answers our prayers when we ask Him with faith.

“In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams.” (Acts 2:17)

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