Explorations in Asian Christianity
Asia is the birthplace of Christianity. If Christianity is not usually seen as an Asian religion, that is because the history of Christianity in Asia has long been a difficult one. Whereas Christianity in the West received royal support, Asian Christianity has led a more nomadic and exilic existence. Today it is the least Christianized region of the world.
Scott W. Sunquist is a recognized expert on the history of the Christian faith in Asia. Over the years he has published and spoken frequently on this theme. Explorations in Asian Christianity gathers his key writings on the topic and organizes them into four main categories: surveys that look at Asian Christianity in broad perspective, historical investigations that look at how Christianity shapes our understanding of history and historiography, missiological studies that look closely at issues of place, and finally essays on theological education.
Topics explored in this volume include
"In these wide-ranging essays on the history, theory, and practice of Christian mission in Asia, Scott Sunquist challenges historians to take more seriously the normative theological commitments of the individuals, institutions, and movements they seek to represent. Attending to the cruciform shape of the apostolic witness, Sunquist combines a close reading of sources with careful reflection and insightful commentary. A must-read for all students of mission and world Christianity."
"For those unfamiliar with Asian Christianity, this collection of essays serves as an excellent introduction. It covers a range of topics, from an overview of the history of Christianity in Asia to specific contextual issues such as ecumenism and migration. The essays are judiciously chosen; some offer a bird's-eye view while others give us a real feel of life on the ground. Overall, Sunquist makes the reader acutely aware of the complexity of Asian Christianity and the challenges it poses. It's a must-read for Christians aspiring to enter the borderlands of mission in Asia."
"In this scholarly contribution to studies of church history, professor Sunquist provides rich intellectual fare. He is a mature scholar with a comprehensive scope of vision that is evident all the way through this book. He has become one of the giants in the transition from a focus on Western missionaries to world Christianity."
"Explorations in Asian Christianity cements Scott Sunquist's reputation as one of the most reliable and insightful storytellers of the many dimensions of Christianity in Asia. From first page to last, he brings into relief the reality that Christian history cannot be divorced from the study of mission, and that both the study of Scripture and Christian history as a whole are the story of Jesus-followers finding their identity in mission. Writing history in Sunquist's hands becomes profoundly theological. There is nothing like it to reveal to readers the depth and breadth of Asian Christianity and the way in which Asians have made it a vital Asian religion with many faces, not a remnant of Western colonialism. Of special value is the nuanced way in which Sunquist takes account of Catholic, classic Protestant, Evangelical, and Pentecostal strands, and the ways in which they develop differently in different contexts."
Part I: Asia
1. Christianity in Asia
2. Ancient Christianity in Asia
3. Ecumenism in Asia
4. Evangelicalism in Asia
Part II: History
5. Missio Dei: Christian History Envisioned as Cruciform Apostolicity
6. The Century That Changed the Religious Map: 1910–2010
7. Time, Lectures, Redemption: Princeton Student Mission Lectures
8. World Christianity: Transforming Church History and Theology
Part III: Missiology
9. Liberation and Theological Conservatism: Making Sense of Korean Resistance to Japan
10. The Importance of Shandong: A Missiology Evaluation of Place
11. Four Theorists, Three Selfs, Two Countries, One Goal: Missionary Practice in China and Korea
12. Mission and Migration: An Introductory Theology
Part IV: Education
13. Moffett, Mateer, and McClure: Three Models, Two Continents, One Mission
14. American Theological Education and Mission: Henry W. Luce, William R. Harper, and the Secularization of Christian Higher Education
15. Asian Theological Education: Earliest Trajectories, Contemporary Concerns