The Public Security Bureau in Sichuan Province’s Gulin County arrested Wenzhou Christian Lin Xuesui and charged him with "organizing and financing illegal gatherings" for attending a Sunday church gathering on June 14 and sharing his testimony in the remote mountainous region, according to Voice of the Martyrs Korea.
Voice of the Martyrs Korea notes that two other Christians who were arrested at the same time as Lin Xuesui were temporarily detained on the same charges but were released on bail pending trial. Lin Xuesui remains in custody at the Gulin Detention Center, according to the report.
According to Voice of the Martyrs Korea Representative Dr. Hyun Sook Foley, Lin Xuesui’s wife, Li Chunqing, issued a public letter August 20, calling on Christians around the world to pray for God to lead and strengthen her husband during his imprisonment, and to fill him with peace and joy.
“Li Chunqing says that authorities have portrayed her husband as a ‘socially dangerous’ criminal, which she says is ‘simply nonsense’,” according to Representative Foley. “She describes her husband as an ordinary Christian who was carrying out his ‘fundamental Christian responsibility’ by responding to an invitation from other Christians to visit Gulin county and then share his testimony there when he saw how few local residents had heard the Gospel.”
According to Representative Foley, Christians around the world should give special attention to the arrest of Lin Xuesui. “Most of the time, Christians and media around the world pay attention when the Chinese government raids or removes a cross from the building of a famous Chinese megachurch, or when Chinese police arrest a high-profile pastor in one of the large Chinese cities,” says Representative Foley. “But the arrest and imprisonment of Lin Xuesui shows that the Chinese government is afraid of even one ordinary Christian doing ordinary Christian activities in a remote, unpopulated area of China.”
Representative Foley says that Chinese authorities erroneously quote scriptures like Romans 13:1 and 1 Peter 2:13-15 to claim that the Bible requires Christians to obey all of the Communist Party’s restrictions and regulations governing religious activities. “Christians should expose this as unbiblical teaching,” she says. “God has not delegated the oversight of his church to any government. He continues to lead and guide his church directly. We should remember that Paul, who wrote Romans 13, was beheaded by the government, and Peter was crucified upside down. Both were executed as criminals because they taught people to follow Jesus, who was also executed as a common criminal. So as Christians we should not turn to the government to guide and direct our religious life. We should turn only to God.”
Representative Foley adds, “When authorities punish us for our obedience to God, yes, we are required to submit to that punishment—not because we have done wrong, but because we Christians are commanded to leave all judgment and vengeance to the Lord. The Bible shows that whoever judges or persecutes Jesus’ faithful witnesses only ends up judging themselves, and they will face eternal consequences for their actions.”
Gulin County, Sichuan Province, China
Representative Foley quotes from the prayer letter of Li Chunqing, the wife of Lin Xuesui:
“We believe, ‘It is mine to avenge; I will repay, says the Lord.’ We pray for God to guard us and show His mercy to us. ‘The eyes of the Lord are everywhere, keeping watch on the wicked and the good.’ We hope God raises up more people who love Him through such tribulation.”
Individuals interested in learning more about Voice of the Martyrs Korea’s work in partnership with underground Chinese Christians wherever they are found can visit www.vomkorea.com/en/china.