China Pushes for New Hong Kong Security Law

China Pushes for New Hong Kong Security Law.  Sure, it sounds like it’s got nothing to do with religion in general – or Christianity specifically.  And yet, this is China.  An atheist country trying to redo Christianity into something in the image of the atheist Communist Party.  That should be cause for concern.  Let’s see why.

China Pushes for New Hong Kong Security LawConsider the letter to the church in Thyatira.  We’re not going to discuss the entire letter.  That’s happening over on my other site.  It will be there, as part of a series called, aptly enough, Seven Letters to Seven Churches.  I’ll a link here when the letter to Thyatira is added, but you can check out what’s been written so far.  In general, I’m adding one church each week.

To the Church in Thyatira

Rev 2:18 “To the angel of the church in Thyatira write:

These are the words of the Son of God, whose eyes are like blazing fire and whose feet are like burnished bronze. 19 I know your deeds, your love and faith, your service and perseverance, and that you are now doing more than you did at first.

Rev 2:20 Nevertheless, I have this against you: You tolerate that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess. By her teaching she misleads my servants into sexual immorality and the eating of food sacrificed to idols.

New Hong Kong security law and the church in Thyatira

How does a new Honk Kong security law fit in with the letter to the church in Thyatira?  Let’s get a bit of history to see that.

So far, Hong Kong really does have freedom of religion.  Its citizens are free to openly worship the religion of their choice.  For Christians, obviously that Christianity.  They’re also able to use the same Scriptures that are available across the world.  Given their status as a former British colony, that means they can use the same Bibles we use in every other country where people speak English. 

What’s happening in China now

They can also use direct Chinese translations from those same Bibles.  Generally, that’s a Cantonese translation of the NIV.  With more mainland Chinese people living in Hong Kong now, the use of Mandarin translations is probably increasing as well.  The point is though, they read the same thing we do – just in a different language.

That’s in contrast to what happens in Mainland China.  Communist China, controlled by the atheist Communist Party.  They’ve recently instituted new religious regulations, aimed at making Christianity more like the Communist Party, and less like Christianity as the rest of us know it.  Please see Chinese Religious Regulations for more on that.   

But even that’s not enough.  They are also in the process of rewriting the Bible.  Seriously.  Rewriting it to be in the image of the Communist Party.  Please see Does China want to rewrite the Bible?  for more on that.

What could happen in Hong Kong

Before we get into why this new Hong Kong security law that China’s pushing for has to do with the letter to Thyatira. let’s look at its potential impact on Christianity.  In fact, I dare say, it’s likely impact on Christianity.

When the Hong Kong handover took place from Great Britain to Communist China, there was supposed to be something called “One Country, Two Systems”.  That would unite Hong Kong and Mainland China, but would have two systems of government.  Not surprisingly, China’s goal is to change that. 

That promise was only temporary, even from the beginning.  It was set to expire in 2047.  But now, even a country as patient as China is to achieve its objectives, that’s not good enough.  They want change now.  Remember the riots in Hong Kong before the Coronavirus started.  The Communist Government agreed to back off on the main sticking point that caused the riots, but not everything else.

Now that things over there are settling down, somewhat, it seems the push is on again.  Here’s the background on msnnews.com – from a New York Times article.

BEIJING — China is moving to impose new national security laws that would give the Communist Party more control over Hong Kong, threatening to erode the freedoms that distinguish the global, commercial city from the rest of the country.

The proposal, announced on Thursday, could reignite the fear, anger and protests over the creeping influence of China’s authoritarian government in the semiautonomous region. It could also inflame worries that Beijing is trying to dismantle the distinct political and cultural identity that has defined the former British colony since it was reclaimed by China in 1997.

The lines after that, while seemingly unrelated, is why this is a big deal for Christianity.

In China’s view, such rules are necessary to protect the sovereignty of the Communist Party from external forces determined to undermine its rule. The legislation would allow Beijing to take aim at the large, often violent anti-government protests that roiled Hong Kong for much of last year — unrest that has posed a direct challenge to the party and its top leader, Xi Jinping.

Unless you read about the Religious Regulations I mentioned above – you probably don’t see what I’m talking about.  Here it is:

In China’s view, such rules are necessary to protect the sovereignty of the Communist Party from external forces determined to undermine its rule.

One of the many things that the Communist Party sees as undermining its sovereignty is Christianity.  There are at least two reasons for that.  First – God is above everything.  That’s not good for an atheist party that wants total control over everything and everyone.

The second issue has to do with missionaries.  Whether they come to Mainland China from someplace like the U.S. (any foreign country, really) or Hong Kong, they are a problem.  They bring the Biblical version of Christianity into the country.  It’s not Communist China’s Three Self Church that’s being forced on the people by those new religious regulations.

Now that they’re trying to unite Hong Kong and the Mainland, travel between the two places is much more open.  The last time I was there, even years ago, I went from Hong Kong to Shenzhen in Mainland China with a group of people.  They all had Hong Kong ID cards or were Mainland residents.  I had my passport and a one-day visa.  They sailed through customs.  And then they had to wait while I went through the foreigners’ line by myself.

All that presents a problem.  As long as travel between Hong Kong and the mainland is open like that, news about what Christianity is really about will flow free back and forth.  To the Communist government, that’s not acceptable.

To that end, one of the regulations recently put in place in Communist China is:

4a. The State, in accordance with the law, protects normal religious activities,actively guides religion to fit in with socialist society, and safeguards the lawful rights and interests of religious groups, religious schools, religious activity sites and religious citizens.

There’s just no way that Christianity, in its true form, can or ever will fit in with the society that China wants to exist.  Therefore, Christianity is a threat to China’s sovereignty, and must be either stopped or modified.

China Pushes for New Hong Kong Security Law

And that’s why China must have this new security law in Hong Kong.  It will allow them to institute the same “religious freedom” laws in Hong Kong that already are being entrenched in mainland China’s society.  

I see this as something China will do in every area where they claim “ownership”, if and when they take over.  

The other thing is, as China finds success in doing this, other countries will want to do the same thing.  Atheist dictatorships. for sure.  But what about places like here in the U.S.  For all practical purposes, we very nearly have a dictator in control here right now.  He does what he pleases, and others in the government are so afraid of coming under Twitter attack from him that they just bow down and say “yes sir!”

What does China’s new Hong Kong Security Law have to do with the church in Thyatira?

Remember this part of the letter to the church in Thyatira:

You tolerate that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess. By her teaching she misleads my servants into sexual immorality and the eating of food sacrificed to idols.

Sexual immorality and eating food sacrificed to idols were two of the issues facing Christians in the first century AD when this was written.  While those things still exist, the big threat from China is more like China is Jezebel, rewriting the Bible, changing prophecy in the process, and misleading people who are trying to become Christians into following the Three Self Church teachings instead.  As I said, the Three Self Church is far from true Christianity.

That leaves two groups of people, especially as the true message of Christianity moves into the mainland from Hong Kong and other areas of the world.

Let’s read the entire letter now and see what that leaves.

To the Church in Thyatira

Rev 2:18 “To the angel of the church in Thyatira write:

These are the words of the Son of God, whose eyes are like blazing fire and whose feet are like burnished bronze. 19 I know your deeds, your love and faith, your service and perseverance, and that you are now doing more than you did at first.
Rev 2:20 Nevertheless, I have this against you: You tolerate that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess. By her teaching she misleads my servants into sexual immorality and the eating of food sacrificed to idols. 21 I have given her time to repent of her immorality, but she is unwilling. 22 So I will cast her on a bed of suffering, and I will make those who commit adultery with her suffer intensely, unless they repent of her ways. 23 I will strike her children dead. Then all the churches will know that I am he who searches hearts and minds, and I will repay each of you according to your deeds. 24 Now I say to the rest of you in Thyatira, to you who do not hold to her teaching and have not learned Satan’s so-called deep secrets (I will not impose any other burden on you): 25 Only hold on to what you have until I come.
Rev 2:26 To him who overcomes and does my will to the end, I will give authority over the nations—

Rev 2:27 ‘He will rule them with an iron scepter;
he will dash them to pieces like pottery’—

just as I have received authority from my Father. 28 I will also give him the morning star. 29 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.

So we have the true Christians – the ones that can openly worship in Hong Kong, the ones in the underground churches in the mainland, and the ones that attend the Three Self Church – but also know the truth about Christianity.

I know your deeds, your love and faith, your service and perseverance, and that you are now doing more than you did at first.

And we have the ones that are being led astray by the Communist Party’s three self church.

Nevertheless, I have this against you: You tolerate that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess. By her teaching she misleads my servants into sexual immorality and the eating of food sacrificed to idols.

Ultimately, in the End Times, this will not be allowed by God to continue.  But God’s not ready for that yet.

I have given her time to repent of her immorality, but she is unwilling.

But when the time comes, the true prophecy from Jesus in this letter will take place.

So I will cast her on a bed of suffering, and I will make those who commit adultery with her suffer intensely, unless they repent of her ways.  I will strike her children dead. Then all the churches will know that I am he who searches hearts and minds, and I will repay each of you according to your deeds.

Conclusion – China Pushes for New Hong Kong Security Law

In the Seven Letters series I mentioned, I said I believe that while these letters were to churches at that time, they also have other applications.  Today, any given church could, and almost certainly does, fit into the mold of one of those seven churches.  But so do countries.  And so do individuals.

As I write up each of the churches, there’s a lot of questions for the reader to ask themselves,  Questions designed to help us see where we fit into the warnings and the praises that Jesus was giving to them.  And therefore, the things we need to watch out for.  The things that might keep us from overcoming and achieving the rewards.  Rewards like eternal life in Heaven with Jesus.  Something that’s most certainly not going to be in the New Three Self Church “Christian” Bible.

So my final question here – where do you see your state, country, church denomination, or whatever designation that applies to you – where do you see them going?  

God gave us a mind.  He gave us these prophecies.  And whether the end time starts in 32 seconds, 2 years, 2 decades, or longer – it’s something we really should pay attention to.  For ourselves and also for our family, loved one, friends, and even strangers.


Image by Arek Socha from Pixabay


 

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