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Publications [#339332] of Jesse Sun

Papers Published

  1. Sun, Z, Translating the Christian moral message: Reading Liang Fa's Good Words to Admonish the Age in the tradition of morality books, Studies in World Christianity, vol. 24 no. 2 (August, 2018), pp. 98-113 [doi]
    (last updated on 2019/06/24)

    Abstract:
    © Edinburgh University Press. This paper seeks to interpret Good Words to Admonish the Age, the most important writing of the first Chinese Protestant pastor, Liang Fa (1789-1855), in its complex relations with the tradition of morality books (shan shu). By doing so, the paper attempts to show Liang's subversive adoption of an existing social and religious genre that enjoyed widespread acceptance at the time. While Liang affirms the significance of moral values, he also distinguishes those practices held by morality books as meritorious from actual moral uprightness. In contrast, moral good for Liang is a result of divine intervention (that is, salvation) and a Christian duty, thus transcending the conventional purpose of earthly reward or securing one's own fate for blessings. In crafting his Good Words, the morality-book tradition forms an essential point of contact that Liang appropriated and adapted for delivering his Christian message - a message that is also in competition with the conventional moral view of salvation. For Liang, these moral tenets, which he still holds dear after his conversion, now culminate in a theological knowledge of God and his salvation plan.


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