- Religion and Philosophy
Pray for an Awakening to the True Religion after the Earthquake in Sichuan, China
Epicenter of the Earthquake in Sichuan, China
Brief Description of the Earthquake in Sichuan, China
Sichuan Province, located in southwest China, is one of the largest and most inaccessible provinces in the nation. This province covers an area of 485,000 kilometers (187,000 miles) and boasts the largest population in China, with 87 million people
In Sichuan province of China an earthquake at a magnitude 7.9 Mw occurred at 14:28 CST on May 12, 2008. In China, it was named the Wenchuan earthquake after the earthquake's epicenter in Wenchuan County in Sichuan province. The epicenter was 90 kilometres (56 mi) west-northwest of Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan, with a depth of 19 kilometres (12 mi).
The earthquake was felt as far away as Beijing (1,500km away) and Shanghai (1,700km away), where office buildings swayed with the tremor. The earthquake was also felt in nearby countries. Skyscrapers swayed in Shanghai and in the Taiwanese capital of Taipei, 100 miles off the southeastern Chinese coast. There were no immediate reports of injuries or damage.
The quake was felt as far away as the Vietnamese capital of Hanoi, where some people hurried out of swaying office buildings and into the streets downtown. A building in the Thai capital of Bangkok also was evacuated after the quake was felt there.
A magnitude 7.9 earthquake is considered a major event, capable of causing widespread damage and injuries in populated areas.
Official figures (as of 16 May) state that 22,069 are confirmed dead, including 21,577 in Sichuan province.The Chinese government warned that the death toll could soar to 50,000. Tens of thousands are missing, many of them buried, and eight provinces were affected.It was the deadliest and strongest earthquake to hit China since the 1976 Tangshan earthquake, which killed over 250,000 people.
Destruction from the Earthquake in Sichuan, China
Rescue Workers search for Earthquake Survivors
Rescuers search for survivors at the debris of collapsed buildings in the earthquake-hit Shifang, Sichuan province, May 16, 2008. China struggled to bury its dead and help tens of thousands of injured and homeless on Friday when a powerful aftershock brought new havoc four days after an earthquake thought to have killed more than 50,000. - REUTERS/Stringer (CHINA)
What Christians are doing for the People in Sichuan after the Earthquake
Sichuan province has over 250,000 baptized Christians, 150 churches, one seminary, and 700 meeting points where Christians gather to pray together, sing hymns and study God's word.
The Rev. Yuan Shiguo, general secretary of the Sichuan Christian Council reported that many churches have been destroyed and members of the Christian community, hurt in the earthquake. Because of the remoteness of some of the most affected areas, it may be weeks, even months, before the Sichuan Christian Council can assess the real damage done to churches and meeting points in the province. At that time the China Christian Council, the national umbrella of Protestant church in China, will most likely put out an international appeal.
Meanwhile says Rev. Yuan, "I would like to invite all of you to keep praying for our churches, Christians, and our people."
Christian Relief Organizations sent Help to Sichuan within Hours of the Earthquake
Within five hours of the May 12 earthquake near Chengdu, China, the Amity Foundation, a Chinese social service organization and Global Ministries' partner, had sent staff to the city to initiate relief efforts. By 7:00 that evening, Yue Yaomeng, Amity's project officer for disaster programs, began to assess crisis relief.
Amity released an immediate one million yuan (approx. US$145,000) to be available for relief aid. This was used in part to purchase 144,000 bottles of drinking water, nearly 29,000 packs of dried instant noodles, and 1,700 plastic tarps for temporary shelters. This life-giving cargo went from Chengdu to bring supplies to surrounding areas.
Within hours of a 7.9 magnitude earthquake that crumbled buildings and killed thousands of people in the Sichuan Province of western China on Monday, international Christian relief organization Samaritan's Purse responded to the crisis.
According to a news release, Franklin Graham, president and CEO of Samaritan's Purse and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, is currently on a 10-day visit to China where he is meeting with government and church leaders in Beijing, Hangzhou, Nanjing and Shanghai.
When he learned about the devastating earthquake, Graham committed $150,000 to assist with the immediate disaster response. The relief organization is continuing to look for additional ways it can contribute to earthquake relief efforts.
Buddhism is the Dominant Religion in Sichuan Province and the Leshan Giant Buddha is one of the Main Objects of Worship and Pilgrimage in that Area.
Over the centuries, the cultural treasures in the fertile Sichuan Basin region have grown in number. Among them, the most remarkable is Leshan Giant Buddha.
Leshan Giant Buddha is an enormous statue carved into the side of Lingyun Mountain. The Buddha is over 71 meters (230 feet) tall and is wide enough for more than 100 people to sit between its feet.
The Giant Buddha lies to the east of the city of Leshan in Sichuan Province at the confluence of the Minjiang, Dadu and Qingyi rivers. The statue faces the sacred Mount Emei with the rivers flowing below its feet.
The Leshan Giant Buddha in Sichuan is not only an Object of Worship but also a Popular Pilgim and Tourist Attraction
The True Religion of the One True God forbids the Worshiping of Images and Statues
Exodus 20: 1-6
- And God spoke all these words, saying:
- "I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
- "You shall have no other gods before Me.
- "You shall not make for yourself a carved image--any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth;
- you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me,
- but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
The Lord Jesus Christ said: "But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth." (John 4:23-24)
Giant Buddha of Maitreya, the Buddhist Version of the Messiah (Christ) who comes to the World in the End Time
The Buddha Maitreya is considered by some to be the Antichrist
The statue depicts a seated Maitreya Buddha. Maitreya is the Buddha of the future, who will appear to preach dharma when the teachings of Gautama Buddha have faded away from public consciousness.
Worshiping Maitreya was especially popular between the 4th and 7th centuries, and Maitreya's images are found throughout Buddhist temples in China, conveying his characteristic air of expectancy and promise. The Leshan statue is the most spectacular of them all.
Maitreya Buddha is the New Age Movement's False Christ in the End Time. http://www.satansrapture.com/maitreya.htm
Remember the Lord Jesus Christ's warning: "Then if anyone says to you, 'Look, here is Christ!' or 'There!' do not believe it. For false Christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. See, I have told you beforehand." (Mt. 24:23-25)
Aggressive Persecution of Christians in Southwest China Province Sichuan
Some cities in China persecute Christians more aggressively than others. Langzhong, in southwestern Sichuan Province, is such a city.
May, 2006. Church leaders and co-workers met together for fellowship. When the meeting ended, six police vehicles arrived, disgorging 15 police officers. Thirty leaders were arrested. Fourteen received criminal detention.
Sunday, June 27, 2006. A group of Christians walked home after a regular church service in the home of Wang Shixiu. Suddenly, a small Chang' an microbus and three motorcycles stopped in front of them. Fifteen plainclothes police officers, showing no ID, forced eight of the believers into the van.
When they heard of the arrests, four house church leaders- Li Min (52), one of the top seven national leaders of the 300,000-member Chinese House Church Alliance (CHCA) and considered to be the founder of the house church in Langzhong; Jin Jirong (66); Wang Yuan (38), also a CHCA leader; and Li Mingbo (37)- went to the Public Security Office to find out why.
They did not return.
Later, several more house church Christians- Li Chengxi, Sun Zhifen and Ke Yufang- went to visit their brothers and sisters. All three were subsequently arrested, abused and subjected to detentions. Ke Yufang, Jin Jirong's aunt, observed that her nephew had been seriously injured. For her inquiry, she was thrown into a police van, beaten unconscious and given seven days detention for "assaulting a policeman and interfering with the performance of his duty."
As the believers were held in a large room, more police cars arrived.
"Who is Li Ming?" someone shouted.
"I am," Li Ming said.
Three police officers attacked him, beating and kicking him. They dragged him outside, threw him to the ground and six policemen continued beating his head and stomach.
"You are killing me!" Li Ming cried. The police choked him into silence, pushed him into a police car and took him to detention.
When Jin Jirong tried to stop the police from abusing Li Ming, he too was beaten severely, his ankle injured. The other two leaders were beaten as well. Afterward, Wang Yuan could not stop vomiting. He asked to be taken to a hospital; instead, he was taken to detention.
On July 25, each of the four house church leaders was sentenced to two years "re-education through labor," where they are denied bibles and forbidden to even mention the name of Jesus.