Docstoc

Shen Zhou

Document Sample
Shen Zhou Powered By Docstoc
					Shen Zhou – The Land Of God
        by Joshua Ong
Introduction
For five thousand years, the Chinese people had called their
native land "Shen Zhou" - the Land of God.
Strong traditional and archeological evidence suggested the early
Chinese were once devoted to one heavenly God.
The history of Israel began with Abraham, while China's history
commenced with Emperors Yan and Huang.
Could the two ancient cultures of Israel and China be linked?
Could the wondrous tales of God and man told along Jordan River
and Yellow River be flowing from the same source?
If not, how could the Chinese ancient language and history be
explained?
The Beginnings of Recorded History

   According to The World Almanac and Book
    of Facts (1998, pp 551), recorded history
    began approximately 4004 BC.

          Biblical History

    4000 BC      3000 BC     2000 BC    1000 BC



                             Chinese History
Creation
   Of    The Fall
Universe Of Man



             4000 BC
Recorded              Tower Of
 History               Babel
 begins
                 Global
            Noah Flood



  4000 BC   3000 BC


                            Chinese
                            History
                            begins
                             Israel in
                              Egypt

           Abraham Jacob
                  (Israel)                 7 years
                                          famine in
                                         Middle East


2400 BC              2000 BC 1766 BC
                                          7 years
                                         famine in
           King YuXia/Hsia                 China
King Yao
               禹     夏                        Shang商
  尧                                           Dynasty
      King Shun    Dynasty
           舜
            Moses



1800 BC      1400 BC

                    King Wu Yi
                      武乙
          Shang商            First record of
          Dynasty            idol worship
                               in China
                           Plato

                  Buddha           Aristotle



1000 BC           600 BC

          Laozi   Confucius Mencius
          老子        孔子       孟子
          Zhou周                    Chin秦
          Dynasty                  Dynasty
     Jesus
     Christ                   Mohammed
                               Began Islam




200 BC 0 AD       200 AD
 Buddhism
  entered
   China      Three Kingdom
  西游记             三国            Sui 随
                         Six
                      Dynasties
   Han汉                 六期
                      2005 AD



600 AD 1000   1400    1800


    Song宋     Ming明          China
                             Today

Tang唐    Yuan元    Qing清
                The Origin Of The Chinese
      Adam (4004-3074 BC)                                                               Chinese History Begins

      4000     3800     3600        3400   3200     3000     2800     2600        2400      2200      2000       1800
             Seth (3874-2962 BC)
                   Enosh (3769-2864 BC)
                     Kenan (3679-2769 BC)
                                                                                  2348 BC                    1766 BC
                        Mahalalel (3609-2714 BC)                                                             7 years’
                                                                                  The Flood
                            Jared (3544-2582 BC)                                                             famine
                                      Enoch (3382-3017 BC)
                                        Methuselah (3317-2348 BC)
                                                Lamech (3130-2353 BC)
                                                    Noah (2948-1998 BC)
                                                                                Shem (2446-1846 BC)
                                     Japheth
                                                                                     Arphaxad (2346-1943 BC)
                                   (European)
                                                                            Shem      Shelah          (2311-1908 BC)
                                                                          (Chinese)    Eber       (2281-1851 BC)

                                                                                           Peleg      (2247-2038 BC)

                                                  Ham (African)                               Reu    (2217-2010 BC)

                                                                                               Serug (2185-1985 BC)
                                                                                               Nahor (2155-2036 BC)
                                                                                                 Teruh (2126-1921 BC)
Source: http://www.earth-history.com/Pseudepigrapha/Jas/jasher-intro.htm
                                                                                                    Abram (2056-1881 BC)
                                 Flood
                                 2348 BC                                      This gives
                                                                              approximately 40
                                                                              years for a
                                       Dispersion                             migration of the
                                            2247 BC                           Chinese family
Noah                                             First                        from the Tower of
2948 BC
                                                                              Babel in
                                                Chinese                       Mesopotamia to
                                                Dynasty                       resettlement in
                                                   2205 BC                    China.

 3000        2800        2600      2400         2200         2000          1800    1600 BC
   Noah (2948-1998 BC)
                                1. Shem (2446-1846 BC)                             Before the first
 Could these five                       2. Arphaxad (2346-1943 BC)                 Chinese dynasty in
                                                                                   2205 BC, the
      men be the                           3. Shelah (2311-1908 BC)
                                                                                   Chinese recorded
                                               4. Eber (2281-1851 BC)
     legendary 5                                                                   a mysterious
                                                 5. Peleg (2247-2038 BC)
          rulers?                                                                  ―Legendary Period
                                                                                   of Five Rulers.‖
  Noah

             Are the Chinese also Hebrews?
  Shem


Arphaxad
                     GENESIS 11 ACCOUNT

  Salah     Peleg     Reu    Serug Nahor     Terah   Abram

   Eber                 GENESIS 10 ACCOUNT
                        Possibly the people of East Asia
            Joktan
Origin of                    including the Chinese
Hebrews
    The Chinese Classics (四书五经)
   Consisted of 9 books by a few authors.
   The sole purpose of these classics was to convey Truth,
    or the Dao 道(Tao, The Way and the Word.)
   Many of the authors pointed to Heaven天.
The Confucian Analects 论语       The Book Of Changes 易经
The Great Learning 大学           The Book Of Documents    书经
The Doctrine Of The Mean 中庸     The Book Of Songs   诗经
The Works of Mencius 孟子         The Book Of Rites   礼记
                                Autumn And Spring   春秋

      四书                                                 五经
    Confucius‘ Definition of Dao 道
   ―Yin 阴 (the visible) and Yang 阳 (the invisible)
    are called the Dao道. The loving one discovered
    it and calls it love; the wise man discovers it and
    calls it wisdom.‖
   ―That which cannot be fathoned in terms of Yin
    阴 (the visible) and Yang 阳 (the invisible) is
    called God 神.‖
   ―Let the will be set on the Dao道. Let every
    action be based on morality and be firmly
    grasped. Let every work be motivated by love.‖
           孟子Mencius‘ 2000 Year Prophecy
                          Of A Coming King
                                          From King         The King
                                          Wen to            would arise in
                       From Tang to       Confucius         the course of
                       King Wen           were 500          500 years
                       were 500           years and
       From Yao &
                       years and          more                       Begin
       Shun down to
                       more                                              To
       Tang were
       500 years and                                                Expect
                                 King          Confucius’               The
       more
                                Wen’s               Birth           Arrival
                                 Birth                              Of The
   Yao &               King               King                         King
   Shun’s              Tang’s             Wen’s             Confucius’
   Rule                Death              Death             Death
2253               1753           1229 1132           551   479               22 AD

        2000 BC         1500 BC          1000 BC      500 BC          0 BC/AD
                                                            Birth Of Jesus Christ
    Jiaguwen甲骨文




   These oracle bones revealed the
    creation account through the
    inscriptions and character
    formations.
  How Shun 舜got the throne by the gift of Heaven.
1. Wan Chang said, 'Was it the case that Yao gave the throne to
   Shun?' Mencius said, 'No. The sovereign cannot give the throne to
   another.'
2. 'Yes;-- but Shun had the throne. Who gave it to him?' 'Heaven gave
   it to him,' was the answer.
3. '" Heaven gave it to him:"-- did Heaven confer its appointment on
   him with specific injunctions?'
4. Mencius replied, 'No. Heaven does not speak. It simply showed its
   will by his personal conduct and his conduct of affairs.‗
5. '"It showed its will by his personal conduct and his conduct of
   affairs:"-- how was this?' Mencius's answer was, 'The sovereign can
   present a man to Heaven, but he cannot make Heaven give that
   man the throne. A prince can present a man to the sovereign, but
   he cannot cause the sovereign to make that man a prince. A great
   officer can present a man to his prince, but he cannot cause the
   prince to make that man a great officer. Yao presented Shun to
   Heaven, and Heaven accepted him. He presented him to the people,
   and the people accepted him. Therefore I say, "Heaven does not
   speak. It simply indicated its will by his personal conduct and his
   conduct of affairs."'
   How Shun 舜got the throne by the gift of Heaven.
6. Chang said, 'I presume to ask how it was that Yao presented Shun to
   Heaven, and Heaven accepted him; and that he exhibited him to the
   people, and the people accepted him.' Mencius replied, 'He caused him to
   preside over the sacrifices, and all the spirits were well pleased with them;--
   thus Heaven accepted him. He caused him to preside over the conduct of
   affairs, and affairs were well administered, so that the people reposed
   under him;-- thus the people accepted him. Heaven gave the throne to him.
   The people gave it to him. Therefore I said, "The sovereign cannot give the
   throne to another.―
7. 'Shun assisted Yao in the government for twenty and eight years;-- this was
   more than man could have done, and was from Heaven. After the death of
   Yao, when the three years' mourning was completed, Shun withdrew from
   the son of Yao to the south of South river. The princes of the kingdom,
   however, repairing to court, went not to the son of Yao, but they went to
   Shun. Litigants went not to the son of Yao, but they went to Shun. Singers
   sang not the son of Yao, but they sang Shun. Therefore I said, "Heaven
   gave him the throne." It was after these things that he went to the Middle
   Kingdom, and occupied the seat of the Son of Heaven. If he had, before
   these things, taken up his residence in the palace of Yao, and had applied
   pressure to the son of Yao, it would have been an act of usurpation, and
   not the gift of Heaven.
8. 'This sentiment is expressed in the words of The Great Declaration,--
   "Heaven sees according as my people see; Heaven hears according as my
   people hear."'
           Heaven‘s Decree 天命
   The ancient Chinese were familiar with the nature of
    Heaven‘s Decree.
   ―There is no mistake about the decree of Heaven. The
    purpose of the divine commandments are all to the same
    good effect.‖
   God‘s commandments are based on His love. The
    ancient Chinese believed that ShangDi was a God of love.
   ―Heaven loves the people, and the sovereign should
    reverence this mind of Heaven.‖
   ―There is the great God. Does He hate any one? God
    does not hate any man.‖
                    Who is Confucius
                                孔子?
   Confucius (born Kong Qiu, styled Zhong Ni) lived in 551 B.C. - 479 B.C.,
    China. The Chinese people called him Kong Fuzi or Kong Zi or Master
    Kong.
   To learn Chinese culture, it is good to learn some Confucianism since it
    has been well integrated in Chinese culture, and was the official state
    philosophy for over 2000 years.
   Confucianism was part of the Chinese people's daily life as it was the
    foundation of Chinese family structure, and the guidance for personal
    attitudes and behaviors.
   Confucius' contribution was in his ideas about the government, school,
    family and ethics, and in his teachings.
                         Confucius‘ Heart Desire
                                   孔子心愿

   "At fifteen, I had my mind bent on learning. At
    thirty, I stood firm. At forty, I had no doubts. At
    fifty, I knew the decrees of Heaven. At sixty, my
    ear was an obedient organ for the reception of
    truth. At seventy, I could follow what my heart
    desired, without transgressing what was right."
       Tian Tan天壇




Mystery concerning the 450-year-old
     Temple of Heaven complex
         in Beijing, China.
Why did the emperors sacrifice a
bull on the great white marble Altar
of Heaven at an annual ceremony,
the year's most important and
colourful celebration, the so-called
'Border Sacrifice 郊祀 ' ?
                               Why 郊祀
                           is so Important?

   The great philosopher Confucius 孔子esteemed this
    Border Sacrifice highly that he said a comprehension of
    this ritual would lead to the efficient ruling of the
    Chinese empire:
   ―He who understands the ceremonies of the sacrifices to
    Heaven and Earth…would find the government of a
    kingdom as easy as to look into his palm!‖
    Shu Jing 书经(Book of History)
   One of the earliest accounts of the Border Sacrifice
    was found in the Shu Jing书经, compiled by
    Confucius 孔子 himself.
   Throughout the Chinese Classics (四书五经) and
    especially in the oldest two, the Book of Odes (诗经)
    and the Book of Historical Documents (书经),
    Confucius lifted up Heaven (天) as the Supreme God.
         Confucius‘ Belief In 上帝
   The following texts revealed the original Confucian belief
    in God as the Creator:
   ―How vast is ShangDi, the ruler of men below. How
    arrayed in terrors is ShangDi: His ordinances are full of
    irregularities. Heaven gave birth to the multitudes of
    people.‖
   Recorded also in Shu Jing 书经 was the account of
    Emperor Shun舜 (c. 2230 BC) that he sacrificed to
    ShangDi 上帝.
                 Moral Law

   Confucius believed in Heaven as the
    source of all power, the authority of moral
    law, and a personal God who protected
    not only as a Ruler, but also as a Parent:
   ―Oh vast and distant Heaven, [You] who
    are called Father and Mother…‖
                   One God
   For Confucius, there was no other God other
    than ShangDi:
   ―He who offends against Heaven has none to
    whom he can pray.‖
   In fact, between 2400 BC and 1116 BC, there
    was no record of the Chinese ever worshipping
    any idol images.
   King Wu Yi 武乙 was attributed with the making
    of the first idol image in Chinese history.
            Confucius‘ Humility
   The Master 孔子 said:
   "The sage and the man of perfect virtue;—how
    dare I rank myself with them? It may simply be
    said of me, that I strive to become such without
    satiety, and teach others without weariness."
   "When I walk along with two others, they may
    serve me as my teachers. I will select their good
    qualities and follow them, their bad qualities and
    avoid them.―
   "Heaven produced the virtue that is in me.‖
                      How Did Confucius Know
                         About ShangDi?

   In Confucius‘ day, about 500 BC, at least 1700
    years had passed since the history of China
    began.
   These early rulers understood the religious
    principles that had been handed down by word
    of mouth from the time of creation.
   The ancient sage who had invented the written
    language also had the true concepts of the
    history of the world.
   He recorded this knowledge for all time in his
    pictographic characters.
          Who is ShangDi 上帝?

   This name literally means ‗the Heavenly
    Ruler皇天’. By reviewing recitations
    used at the Border Sacrifice, recorded in
    the Statutes of the Ming Dynasty 大明会
    典(AD 1368), one may begin to
    understand the ancient Chinese
    reverence for ShangDi.
                  A Chinese Prayer
   Participating in this rite, the emperor first meditated at the Temple
    of Heaven (the Imperial Vault), while costumed singers,
    accompanied by musicians, intoned:
   'To Thee, O mysteriously-working Maker, I look up in thought.
    ...With the great ceremonies I reverently honor Thee. Thy servant, I
    am but a reed or willow; my heart is but that of an ant; yet have I
    received Thy favouring decree, appointing me to the government of
    the empire. I deeply cherish a sense of my ignorance and blindness,
    and am afraid, lest I prove unworthy of Thy great favours.
    Therefore will I observe all the rules and statutes, striving,
    insignificant as I am, to discharge my loyal duty. Far distant here, I
    look up to Thy heavenly palace. Come in Thy precious chariot to the
    altar. Thy servant, I bow my head to the earth reverently, expecting
    Thine abundant grace. ...O that Thou wouldest vouchsafe to accept
    our offerings, and regard us, while thus we worship Thee, whose
    goodness is inexhaustible!'
               Annual Dedication
   Thus we find the emperor worshipping ShangDi. Can we
    possible trace the original intention of this magnificent
    ceremony of antiquity? As the emperor took part in this
    annual service dedicated to ShangDi, the following
    words were recited, clearly showing that he considered
    ShangDi the Creator of the world:
   'Of old in the beginning, there was the great chaos,
    without form and dark. The five elements [planets] had
    not begun to revolve, nor the sun and moon to shine.
    You, O Spiritual Sovereign, first divided the grosser parts
    from the purer. You made heaven. You made earth. You
    made man. All things with their reproducing power got
    their being.'
                Similar To Genesis
   For the Jews and Christians, the above recitation sounds strangely
    familiar. How closely it reads to the opening chapter of the Biblical
    Genesis! Note the similarity with excerpts from the more detailed
    story as recorded in the Hebrew writings:
   'In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. The earth
    was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the
    deep. ...
   And God said, "Let the waters under the heaven be gathered
    together unto one place, and let the dry land appear"; and it was
    so. And God called the dry land Earth, and the gathering together of
    the waters called He Seas. ...
   And God made two great lights: the greater light to rule the day,
    and the lesser light to rule the night: He made the stars also. ...
   So God created man in His own image; ...' (Genesis 1:1-2, 9-10, 16,
    27-28)
El-Shaddai & ShangDi

   ShangDi, the Creator-God of the Chinese, surely appears to be one and
    the same as the Creator-God of the Hebrews. In fact, one of the Hebraic
    names for God was El Shaddai, which is phonetically similar to ShangDi.
    Even more similar is the Early Shou pronunciation of ShangDi which is
    'djanh-tigh' [Zhan-dai].
   Another name for their God which the ancient Chinese used
    interchangeable with ShangDi was Heaven (Tian). Zheng Xuan, a
    scholar of the early Han dynasty said, "ShangDi is another name for
    Heaven (Tian天)". The great philosopher Motze (408-382 BC) also
    thought of Heaven (Tian) as the Creator-God:
   'I know Heaven loves men dearly not without reason. Heaven ordered
    the sun, the moon, and the stars to enlighten and guide them. Heaven
    ordained the four seasons, Spring, Autumn, Winter, and Summer, to
    regulate them. Heaven sent down snow, frost, rain, and dew to grow
    the five grains and flax and silk so that the people could use and enjoy
    them. Heaven established the hills and river, ravines and valleys, and
    arranged many things to minister to man's good or bring him evil.'
   How did ShangDi create all things? Here is one further
    recitation from the ancient Border Sacrifice rite:
   'When Te [ShangDi], the Lord, had so decreed, He called
    into existence [originated] heaven, earth, and man.
    Between heaven and earth He separately placed in order
    men and things, all overspread by the heavens.'
   Note that ShangDi 'called into existence', or commanded
    heaven and earth to appear.
   Compare this with the way the Hebrew text described
    the method of creation by El Shaddai, who, we suspect,
    was identical with ShangDi, and the similarity in name
    and role would suggest:
   '...by the word of the LORD were the heavens made;
    and all the host of them by the breath of His mouth. ...
    For He spake, and it was done; He commanded, and it
    stood fast' (Psalm 33:6, 9).
   We have not yet explained the reason for the emperors'
    bull sacrifice to ShangDi. Let us compare this Chinese
    sacrifice with the instruction given by God to the
    Hebrews:
   'Take thee a young calf for a sin offering, and a ram for
    a burnt offering, without blemish, and offer them before
    the LORD' (Leviticus 9:2) - a practice which began in
    earliest times (Genesis 4:3,4; 8:20).
   The most ancient forms of the pictographic Chinese
    writing were found the foundational truths of the Judeo-
    Christian faith.
   In these ideograms, which dated from before the time of
    Moses - we have the entire story of creation, the
    temptation and fall of man into sin, and God's remedy
    for sin in the animal sacrifices, which pointed to the
    coming Savior, Jesus Christ. All the elements of the
    Genesis narrative were found recorded, and still in use,
    in the Chinese character-writing.
   These findings show some startling realities
    about the written Chinese language. All people
    in the world, not just the Chinese, are
    descended from the inhabitants of Babel, the
    first civilization after the Flood.
   God first gave His promise of a coming Saviour,
    the 'Seed of the Woman', in Genesis 3:15. The
    foreshadowed sacrifice of the coming Lamb of
    God, Creator and Saviour, is as old as mankind.
Conclusion:
In the twenty-first century, as Israel is returning back to their Promised
Land, China is returning back to their ShangDi. Shen Zhou is destined
to once again be called the Land of God!
Fifty years ago, there were just over a million Christians in China.
Today their numbers grew beyond hundreds of millions.
Their faith grew not in favorable conditions but under tremendous
persecutions. Not in laughter but in tears. Not by strength but by
meekness. Not in beautiful cathedrals but in smelly dungeons.
Many Chinese people, who are overseas, fill churches, fellowships,
Bible study groups and evangelical meetings. After thousands of
years, modern China is now thirsting for truth, and tasting truth again!

				
DOCUMENT INFO
Shared By:
Categories:
Stats:
views:24
posted:3/11/2010
language:English
pages:40