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Featured Are Christians superstitious?

Discussion in 'General Theology' started by bling, Sep 6, 2019.

  1. bling

    bling Regular Member Supporter

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    I teach Chinese Students in Dallas Universities and they say: one of the criticisms they hear in China about Christians is “Christians are superstitious”, so what would be a good come back answer to that comment?

    Some Christians Chinese seem to make the cross they wear or the Bible they constantly hold into a “good luck charm” which turns off nonbelieving Chinese seeing them as being superstitious, so what should the spiritually strong say to these and/or the nonbelievers if anything?

    I know we have to define “superstition”, but we also have to live with the definition others have and the significance they attach to the word.
     
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  2. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    "Christians aren't superstitious" perhaps?

    That probably isn't the answer you need, but really, most Christians are not superstitious in the way that the "good luck charm" claim makes out.

    I am almost inclined to put the burden back on the Chinese government or natives from where these students picked up their notions and ask them why, exactly, they believe those people and what evidence was produced at that time.
     
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  3. ~Zao~

    ~Zao~ Great is Thy Faithfulness Supporter

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    Strictly speaking it could be classified with an image. I once belonged to a very strict Pentecostal church and that subject came up. I stopped wearing my cross and decided that if anyone was going to think I’m a Christian it would be because of Him shining thru not because of wearing a sign that says Christian. The cross was a shadow emblem of what the substance should speak for itself.
     
  4. devin553344

    devin553344 Enlighten our lives dear Lord

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    A lot of Christians in fact are superstitious. But they would be superstitious even if they weren't Christian. Superstition is a type of thinking that a lot of people hold onto. They carry that type of thinking into their Christianity. Perhaps one day they will let go of it, but at least they believe in Jesus the Christ.

    In fact I've noticed a lot of superstition on this forum. People that don't believe in baptism are superstitious. People that don't believe in the spiritual gifts are superstitious. People claiming mentally ill people are possessed are superstitious. Etc, etc, etc... perhaps the definition is sufficient:

    Superstition: "excessively credulous belief in and reverence for supernatural beings."
     
  5. Tolworth John

    Tolworth John Well-Known Member

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    May I suggest rather than seeking to answer the charge that 'Christians are supersitious' that you question the source. After all Christians are not free to meet and worship or talk about what they believe.
    So how many of your students have met and talked with Christians in China?

    Question your students about their supersitions? What do they do to ensure 'good luck' ?

    If you can turn the conversation to Jesus, what do they know about him? What historical facts about him?
     
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  6. Maria Billingsley

    Maria Billingsley Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I believe it is a cultural phenomenon that can not be easily shaken but has been traded for other forms of superstitions. One by one these will fall away as they walk in the Holy Spirit.
    Blessings
     
  7. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    Here's a dictionary definition that puts the matter into perspective much better--

    superstition,

    an irrational belief or practice resulting from ignorance or fear of the unknown. The validity of superstitions is based on belief in the power of magic and witchcraft and in such invisible forces as spirits and demons.

    ___________________________________________

    Obviously, such things as not believing there is any benefit to be derived from baptism or thinking that the claims people make about having received the gifts of the Holy Spirit are suspect...do NOT constitute "superstition."
     
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  8. bling

    bling Regular Member Supporter

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    The students I am teaching are looking for the truth and know little of Christianity. Most Chinese just write Christianity off as being a superstition, so followers are just superstitious people, not logical, fearful and ignorant.
     
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  9. bling

    bling Regular Member Supporter

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    I am not speaking out against wearing a cross or holding a Bible. I held my Bible with whit knuckles when I did intercity work. Lots of people in china have good luck charms and so people look upon the Christian Cross as another good luck charm and nothing more and might have one and not be a Christian.
     
  10. bling

    bling Regular Member Supporter

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    That is not addressing my question.
    What do you say to express the idea: "Christianity is not a superstition"?
     
  11. ~Zao~

    ~Zao~ Great is Thy Faithfulness Supporter

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    My answer would be, again from the same perspective, to ask if their understanding of Christianity is from a Catholic or Protestant standpoint. :sorry:
     
  12. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    That was my understanding from reading your message. But if that is the case, and they have no first-hand knowledge of Christianity, why would a person like yourself think that he has to explain WHY a falsehood conveyed by other people who also do not know Christianity first-hand are wrong about what they have told these students?

    The burden is entirely upon all of them to give you something concrete in response to you saying, in effect, "That's not true. What would make you think it is?"

    Or to put it another way, it's a mistake to immediately go on the defensive over a claim that has arisen from either government propaganda or plain ignorance by saying something like "Some Christians are superstitious but not the majority" or else trying to explain how some beliefs that involve spiritual things may be superstitious but other ones are not.
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2019
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  13. devin553344

    devin553344 Enlighten our lives dear Lord

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    By definition Christianity is superstitious. My advice is this: I would not try to reason it out and defend it. It's evil to call Christians superstitious. It's mocking Christianity. I would just let them believe what they want to believe and move onto to someone that is open to Jesus the Christ and faith in him.
     
  14. devin553344

    devin553344 Enlighten our lives dear Lord

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    You could defend being the Christians extreme reverence for God. State that he died for us and delivered us to the resurrection of the dead. Etc etc etc.
     
  15. ~Zao~

    ~Zao~ Great is Thy Faithfulness Supporter

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    Jeremiah 10:2 Thus says the LORD: “Learn not the way of the nations, nor be dismayed at the signs of the heavens because the nations are dismayed at them,

    Romans 12:2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

    Romans 8:31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?

    Colossians 2:8-10 See to it that no one enslaves you through philosophy and empty deceit according to human tradition, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to the Messiah, because all the essence of deity inhabits Him in bodily form. And you have been filled by Him, who is the head of every ruler and authority.

    1 Timothy 4:6-7 If you put these instructions before the brothers and sisters, you will be a good servant of Christ Jesus, nourished on the words of the faith and of the sound teaching that you have followed. Have nothing to do with profane myths and old wives’ tales. Train yourself in godliness

    .
     
  16. bling

    bling Regular Member Supporter

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    The Communist Government is cracking down on the Christians right now. These students are all very smart and part of the upper class in a two class society (rich and poor), but they are curious about Christianity. All they might have heard is "Christianity is a superstition", but are questioning that conclusion. About half of my students have never knowingly spoken to a Chinese Christian. They sympathizes with the Chinese in Hong Kong fighting for freedom, but would not openly support them for fear of being considered a traitor (that can get them killed). They had no Bible unless they bought it in Hong Kong or outside mainland China.
    The problem is not the superstitions of my students, but providing them with knowledge to explain why Christianity is not a superstition in a short conversation.
     
  17. bling

    bling Regular Member Supporter

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    My students are not the issue, but the Criticism is an issue. What do you say when a person tells you: "Christianity is just a superstition"?
     
  18. bling

    bling Regular Member Supporter

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    What do you say to explain to someone who believes Christianity is just another superstition?
     
  19. bling

    bling Regular Member Supporter

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    That still just sounds like a superstition?
     
  20. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    So you feel that demonstrating to them that they have merely picked up a claim about Christianity that is not accurate is insufficient?

    OK, I can see that, but I would still start there because it seems to me that the first order of business is to get the conversation to neutral ground upon which you can build a positive response.

    If you resort to trying to explain why the claim of superstitiousness may not be entirely accurate but, well, in some cases, it might be, but don't think of that as genuine Christianity, etc. etc....you have lost control of the discussion.

    That's how I see it, anyway.
     
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