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A Study of T. C. Chao’s Christology in the Social Context of China (1920–1949)

Daniel Hoi Ming Hui

The aim of this book is to show that during the early half of the twentieth century, Chinese society was disillusioned by both internal dissension and external invasion, and the churches experienced many challenges. In response to the traumatic events of 1920–1949, the Chinese theologian Prof. T. C. Chao tried to construct a ‘new religion’ for China, believing that an indigenous Christianity would offer a solution to the national crisis. Chao searched for a new interpretation of Jesus Christ to make him relevant to China’s context and social thought, and tried to develop Christology based on the encounter of Western Christianity, Chinese culture and social change. A personality-focused interpretation of Jesus Christ was developed, and an image of Confucian Jesus was found in his thought. Chao tried to explore his contextual Christology with the purpose of being faithful to Christian faith, and being relevant to Chinese classical culture and the contemporary context in order to enable intellectual Christians to contribute to the national reconstruction of Country.

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Appendix 1: The Contextual Christology of Chao and Chinese Protestant Thinkers (Table 1), see 227

Appendix 2: The Comparison of Christology between Chao and three Protestant Thinkers (Table 2), see 230

Appendix 3: The Author’s Reflection and Prospect after studying Chao’s Christology

As a result of studying the thought of personality-focused Christology, I have learned much about Mr. Chao, who showed himself to be a notable personality. A great deal has been gained from his articles and books. In reading Chao’s writings, the author has gradually come to appreciate the loving heart of Chao. Saving China, reviving the Chinese church and constructing a Chinese theology were priorities for Chao. I see him as a man with a great capacity for love, possessing a brave and creative spirit in the promoting of new ideas, a talent for developing a Chinese theology and a positive attitude to life. All these become valuable treasures for the author during his research.

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