Cultural Christian

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Cultural Christians are individuals who identify themselves with Christian culture while not being religious Christians. This kind of identification may be due to family background, personal experiences, the social and cultural environment in which they grew up, etc.[1]

Contrasting terms are "biblical Christian",[2] "committed Christian",[3] or "believing Christian".[4]

Cultural Christians in China[edit]

Traditionally, Christianity has been considered a 'foreign religion' in China, including all the negative connotations of foreignness common in China. This attitude only started to change at the end of the 20th century. In China, the term "Cultural Christians" (Chinese: 文化基督徒; pinyin: wénhuà jīdūtú) can refer to Chinese intellectuals devoted to the study of Christian theology and ethics. A small number of them are openly religious, some others keep their religiousness secret to protect their academic positions in Communist China, some express sympathy with Christianity but do not associate themselves with it, while the majority are non-believers. Liu Xiaofeng is the best known Chinese cultural Christian of the first type.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ James D. Mallory, Stanley C. Baldwin, The kink and I: a psychiatrist's guide to untwisted living, 1973, p. 64
  2. ^ Patrick Morley, The Man in the Mirror: Solving the 24 Problems Men Face (1997), Biblical Christian or Cultural Christian?
  3. ^ Richard W. Rousseau, Christianity and Judaism: the deepening dialogue (1983), p. 112
  4. ^ Postmodern theology: Christian faith in a pluralist world, Harper & Row, 1989 [1]. Joseph C. Aldrich, Life-style evangelism: crossing traditional boundaries to reach the unbelieving world , 1983 [2]
  5. ^ Fredrik Fallman, "Hermeneutical conflict? Reading the Bible in Contemporary China" in: "Reading Christian Scriptures in China", pp. 49-60