Renowned House Church Evangelist, "To The Unknown Evangelist" Author Bian Yunbo Dies at 93
By Ruth Wang, March 07, 2018 08:03 AM
Bian Yunbo, the famous Chinese house church evangelist who wrote the poem To Unknown Evangelists and assisted Wang Mingdao in writing ministry, died on February 14, 2018, aged 93. Many pastors and church workers in China paid tribute to his faith and lifelong ministry.
Born in China's northern Hebei Province in 1925, Bian became a Christian in 1944 after graduation from high school. In 1945 he joined in a Christian fellowship while he majored in education at National Central University (formerly Nanjing University) and then became a preacher during college. He rejected the offer to study further in Edinburgh twice and went to Southwest China to evangelize and establish churches after graduation from university.
He served God for over seven decades. He wrote the famous narrative poem To Unknown Evangelists in 1948, shortly after his graduation. The poem was to inspire Christians to serve the Lord and stick to the way of the cross.
When Bian left the borderland for Shanghai, he worked alongside Wang Mingdao, one of the Chinese church fathers. Later he was imprisoned and gave testimonies after being discharged from prison. Afterwards, he went to the United States and worked with Chinese churches there. In his later years, he returned to China according to his will.
He recalled the difficult period for Chinese house churches in the 1950s and 1960s in his book Recalling History in My Declining Years. The book includes his experience in jail for starting a fellowship in his house in Tianjin in 1954, the origin of house churches in mainland China, and the Christian Tabernacle founded by Wang Mingdao and him in Beijing.
It also tells the story of how Chinese Christians gathered under harsh conditions: Wenzhou Christians held prayer meetings in caves in the 1960s and this contributed to the subsequent revival of the church in Wenzhou; a Henan Christian dug a hole under his house for worship; other Christians conducted services and gatherings in tunnels, on board, islands, mountains, in forests and wilderness.
The elderly evangelist shared the stories of the last century in Chinese churches across the world, hoping his witnesses inspired believers not to "overlook Sunday worship services or forget that we should attend services".
"The church are saints rather than a chapel or a building. We, the children of God, are the church. A shabby chapel with a fervent congregation who love one another, exalt Christ, and preach the gospel is better than a magnificent one with a cold congregation," he said.
- Translated by Karen Luo
More from CCD
A year had passed, but the ghost of rumors is still wandering around in the Chinese Christian world.
The Newly Renovated Dalian Harvest Road Church and Their Congregation Welcome the New Year’s First Sunday Worship.
If it had not been the Word of God which gave Rev Chen Yiping strength to endure manual corrective labour for twenty years, he would not have been alive today.
After the departure of five of approximately eight total bishops during the past 20 months, Moscow's "Evangelical-Lutheran Church of the Augsburg Confession" appears to be on its last legs.
The year 2018 signifies a phase's rapid change and development of Christianity in China, also marks a turning point for a tremendous transitional period.
73 couples celebrated their decades' marriage in the church.
Ningbo Centennial Church held a testimony and prayer meeting to greet the new year.
Does the Christmas story have a special Chinese connection?
During a meeting with Moscow Baptist pastor Vitaly Vlasenko on 14 December, Lugansk Metropolitan Mitrofan stressed that "Evangelical-Christians, Baptists and Pentecostals belong to the traditional confessions within our region".
A close-up at the Christmas evening party of a migrant workers’ church in Suzhou city: commemorating the birth of the Lord Jesus – passing on love with warm actions.