China’s ‘Chairman of Everything’: the New Emperor

The WAToday runs an interesting article about the latest developments in China. The chairman of the communist party in China recently had himself anointed ’emperor’ by the party’s convention. He was endorsed for a second five-year term, and the fact that he seems to be able to set himself up for a third, indicates his enormous power.

This article shows us the hypocrisy of the western world in how they react to this event. While the President of the USA condemned such a move by Venezuela’s president Nicolas Maduro, he congratulated Xi Jinping, the ‘new emperor of China’, with this ‘extraordinary elevation’ and described him as a ‘very good person’.

One more interesting line in this article I want to share with you: “Trump helpfully added in a TV interview: “Now some people might call him the king of China. But he’s called president.”

It is clear that this ‘new emperor’ likes to have a tight grip on whatever is happening in his country. An Australian sinologist, Geremie Barme, called him last year the ‘chairman of everything’. We can only guess what this is going to mean for the Christian churches in China. The first signs don’t bode well. Nevertheless, we acknowledge that every authority is ordained by God and we must submit to the governments. God has a purpose with this as well.

It looks like history is repeating itself. Wasn’t it a Roman ruler, about two thousand years ago, who elevated himself to emperor (Caesar)? And wasn’t it again a Roman emperor who later elevated himself to divine emperor (‘Dominus et Deus’, emperor Domitian)? Also then the Christian church was persecuted. But we see that God is in control. Despite persecution, the Church grew and spread all over the Roman Empire and beyond. We know that God is able to do the same, also now, also in China. Let us pray for the churches in China, let us also pray if God will again work with power and glorify Himself in these events.