How Do Chinese Christians Think? Diane Poythress on the Church in Asia

East and West aren’t just locations—they represent completely different worldviews, which affect the culture of the church in places like Asia.

“Eastern” and “Western” aren’t just geographic labels—they’re terms that signify a massive worldview chasm. How do Chinese culture, the Confucian system of thought, and Eastern patterns of thought impact the church in Asia? What questions to Chinese Christians tend to bring to the Bible, and what questions should they—and we—be asking instead? Dr. Diane Poythress provides answers, drawing upon her theological expertise and her time as a missionary in Asia.

Diane M. Poythress earned her Ph.D. in Reformation history and theology from Westminster Theological Seminary. She studied under Francis Schaeffer at L’Abri, was a missionary in Europe and Taiwan, and served as staff for InterVarsity Christian Fellowship in Washington, D.C. She is a speaker, writer, and housewife married to Vern Poythress, and mother of two grown sons.

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Alex Kocman & Scott Dunford

Alex Kocman is the Director of Communications and Engagement for ABWE. He serves as general editor for Message Magazine and co-hosts The Missions Podcast. After earning his M.A. in Communication and B.S. in Biblical Studies, he served as an online apologetics instructor with Liberty University and a youth pastor in Pennsylvania, where he now resides with his wife and three children. Read his blog or follow him on X/Twitter.

Scott Dunford is the pastor of Western Hills Church in San Mateo, Calif. Previously, Scott served as Vice President of Mobilization and Communications for ABWE and as a missionary in East Asia. Scott graduated from Northland International University (B.A. in Pastoral Studies), earned his M.A. in biblical studies from Central Baptist Theological Seminary, his M.B.A. from Cornerstone University, and is currently enrolled in Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary’s D.Min. program with an emphasis on missions.