Chinese New Year is the largest holiday of the year in China and if you are praying for China or joining some Chinese friends during the festival, there are two things that every Christian should know.
Though there are many different aspects to the history of the Chinese New Year, the following two things are not often talked about among Chinese Christians, simply because most of them do not know these two things.
First, the Chinese calendar is measured by different animals and this year is the year of the rooster and like the Jewish Passover Festival, Chinese New Year is based on the lunar calendar, not the solar calendar. This is why Easter falls on a different Sunday every year.
During Chinese New Year, almost every home puts banners on their door. No one really knows where this comes from, but everyone knows what it means. The meaning of the banners is to bring blessings on a home and protection against evil spirits.
This is amazingly similar to the passover festival and presents a great open door to share about the Bible with your Chinese friends.
Secondly, the number one character used for Chinese New Year is the word for blessings – phonetically pronounced ‘foo’ (福). This character is probably the most important one in the Chinese language is used more than any other. It is posted on the door of almost every home during Chinese New Year.
Embedded in this word is a special message. This character is made up of several smaller characters that have special meanings. ‘Foo’ or blessing 福is made up the characters of god（礻）+ 1 (－ )+ mouth or measure word for person (口) + field (田).
This character tells the story that a blessing is when God (礻) is together with man (－口 ) in the field (田).
This Chinese Character ‘foo’ has a message that is applicable to us all. When God is with us in our daily job – whether that is in a field, an office, or a factory – we are blessed. If we want to seek blessing in our daily lives, then we can start with bringing the Lord into our every day space.
If you would like to learn more about the history of Chinese characters and how they apply to the revivals in China today, you can purchase our book “Underground Church.” Underground Church is a book that unpacks the history of the Chinese church in a way that is simple and understandable. Much of the information provided in this book has never been shared before and can be a powerful tool to pray for the Chinese church and reach out to the Chinese in your community.