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The Heavenly Man: The Remarkable True Story of Chinese Christian Brother Yun

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The dramatic autobiography of one of China's dedicated, courageous, and intensely persecuted house church leaders. This is the gripping story of how God took a young, half-starved boy from a poor village in Henan province and placed him on the front line for Jesus, in the face of impossible odds. Instead of focusing on the many miracles or experiences of suffering, however The dramatic autobiography of one of China's dedicated, courageous, and intensely persecuted house church leaders. This is the gripping story of how God took a young, half-starved boy from a poor village in Henan province and placed him on the front line for Jesus, in the face of impossible odds. Instead of focusing on the many miracles or experiences of suffering, however, Yun prefers to focus on the character and beauty of Jesus. Interspersed with his personal account are contributions from his wife, Deling, made mostly during her husband's frequent periods of imprisonment. You will remember where you were the first time you read this life story. It's a watershed book that will turn the reader to prayer and praise. It deserves comparison with past classics such as Tortured for Christ by Richard Wurmbrand, or the Life of Watchman Nee.


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The dramatic autobiography of one of China's dedicated, courageous, and intensely persecuted house church leaders. This is the gripping story of how God took a young, half-starved boy from a poor village in Henan province and placed him on the front line for Jesus, in the face of impossible odds. Instead of focusing on the many miracles or experiences of suffering, however The dramatic autobiography of one of China's dedicated, courageous, and intensely persecuted house church leaders. This is the gripping story of how God took a young, half-starved boy from a poor village in Henan province and placed him on the front line for Jesus, in the face of impossible odds. Instead of focusing on the many miracles or experiences of suffering, however, Yun prefers to focus on the character and beauty of Jesus. Interspersed with his personal account are contributions from his wife, Deling, made mostly during her husband's frequent periods of imprisonment. You will remember where you were the first time you read this life story. It's a watershed book that will turn the reader to prayer and praise. It deserves comparison with past classics such as Tortured for Christ by Richard Wurmbrand, or the Life of Watchman Nee.

30 review for The Heavenly Man: The Remarkable True Story of Chinese Christian Brother Yun

  1. 5 out of 5

    Mikha ϟ

    i only read this book 'cause my mom kept on telling i kept on reading books about vampires, witches and such and that I'm turning one myself. so, what i did is, I took one of the books in my sister's shelf and it was this one. To tell you the truth, i just read this to impress my mom but i actually realized a lot of things. Let just say its a lot, ok?

  2. 4 out of 5

    Betsy

    An incredibly challenging view of commitment to the Lord. As horrific as his experiences were, Yun and his coauthor Paul Hattaway share the story with amazing joy and vision. I did lay awake at night thinking about some of the abuses Yun suffered, but this is not a depressing book; it is both tremendously humbling and extremely visionary.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Vincent Chough

    How far are you willing to go for your convictions? How much are you willing to risk? This book received five stars because it challenged me on many levels. On the surface it is the autobiography of a Christian in China, named Brother Yun, born in 1958. His family was very poor, and early in adolescence Yun had a spiritual conversion. The early chapters read almost like a parable. During his life practicing and preaching the faith, Yun faced tremendous religious persecution including years of im How far are you willing to go for your convictions? How much are you willing to risk? This book received five stars because it challenged me on many levels. On the surface it is the autobiography of a Christian in China, named Brother Yun, born in 1958. His family was very poor, and early in adolescence Yun had a spiritual conversion. The early chapters read almost like a parable. During his life practicing and preaching the faith, Yun faced tremendous religious persecution including years of imprisonment and torture. The inserts by his wife, Deling, give an even deeper perspective of how she cared for their children alone. Yun’s courage and dedication inspire western Christians to examine their own commitment and to truly value the religious freedom we possess. Here ends the secular discussion on fighting for religious freedom. There was a deeper process going on for me. How much do I believe? The story relates the occurrence of miracles in the life of Yun – almost like a modern day Acts of the Apostles. Do I believe these? Or do I root around for rational explanations? In places where practicing your faith means life or death, doesn’t it make sense that the astonishing can occur? When this man shares his excruciating tales of physical and emotional desolation, where do I see myself in my commitment, or better, in my comfort? Miracles don’t come cheap and the most wondrous miracle is a life transformed. How far am I willing to let the Spirit take me? Yun doesn’t pray for the fall of communism in China. He prays for a stronger spiritual back to face oppression in order to bring more glory to God. This courageous man speaks calmly about the real possibility that he will die in the mission field. This is the vision of the Kingdom of God, and it humbles my small faith.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Natalie Vellacott

    I felt uncomfortable when reading this book firstly due to the title. Should anyone really name themselves "The Heavenly Man?" I found the many miracles almost unbelievable and would like to have seen other sources that supported his version of events. I'm just not sure I can accept that these things really happened and as another reviewer has pointed out, several of the stories mirror things that happened in scripture down to the last detail (Yun's escape from prison) I wouldn't recommend this I felt uncomfortable when reading this book firstly due to the title. Should anyone really name themselves "The Heavenly Man?" I found the many miracles almost unbelievable and would like to have seen other sources that supported his version of events. I'm just not sure I can accept that these things really happened and as another reviewer has pointed out, several of the stories mirror things that happened in scripture down to the last detail (Yun's escape from prison) I wouldn't recommend this as it may confuse a non-believer or a not so discerning believer...

  5. 4 out of 5

    Stacia

    I didn't really enjoy this book. I knew there was a lot of controversy surrounding the book right about the time I started reading it. I asked some missionaries that we know in China what they thought of him. Unfortunately, they know him through an American speaking engagement rather than the house church movement in China. Anyhow, while I want to keep my mind open to the possibility that God can/does work in miraculous ways I found this book over the top. I've read a couple other missionary bio I didn't really enjoy this book. I knew there was a lot of controversy surrounding the book right about the time I started reading it. I asked some missionaries that we know in China what they thought of him. Unfortunately, they know him through an American speaking engagement rather than the house church movement in China. Anyhow, while I want to keep my mind open to the possibility that God can/does work in miraculous ways I found this book over the top. I've read a couple other missionary biographies and those seem more realistic, God works miracles but its not on every page. I also found that he continuously took verses out of context and never once in the entire book did he fully explain the gospel. I think that to give at least one presentation of what he told others would be helpful... otherwise I'm lead to believe he simple told people to repent of their sins, which isn't sufficient, I believe. There were also several times in which his story paralleled stories in the Bible a little TOO closely. For example, he escapes from prison passing 2 or 3 guards, and then the iron gates are from some reason open. He goes to a friends house, where they are praying, and the daughter is so excited to hear his voice that she forgets to open the door. Read Acts 12:6-19... minus the angel and change the servant to a daughter and its basically the same story. And that's not the only one. While I'm not ready to call him a fake, a fraud, or a liar, I'm ready to put the brakes on and not accept whole heartedly what he has said. I'm going to assume that for the most part his story is true, however, he maybe the events are exaggerated in his mind or something. I could continue with my opinion, but I'll spare you.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Dana Roberts

    This story is not likely true. I have attempted to contact Brother Yun about some of the issues I raise here. But his staff member says he will only answer questions at one of his programs. Does that make sense? Can you imagine Billy Graham requiring this, surrounded by an adoring crowd, with a few hundred people wanting to thank him? Of course the offer was disingenuous. Yun is much more popular among Christians outside his own Henan Province. Here are the problems. 1) The larger fellowship of This story is not likely true. I have attempted to contact Brother Yun about some of the issues I raise here. But his staff member says he will only answer questions at one of his programs. Does that make sense? Can you imagine Billy Graham requiring this, surrounded by an adoring crowd, with a few hundred people wanting to thank him? Of course the offer was disingenuous. Yun is much more popular among Christians outside his own Henan Province. Here are the problems. 1) The larger fellowship of Christian leaders in Henan Province have distance themselves from Yun and his claims. Many of the independent churches in Henan first learn about Yun from Yun HIMSELF, during their testimony time. They just assumed that Christians do not lie (And just how many people has Benny Hinn healed through his anointed ministry?). 2)This is the second Chinese autobiographer that claimed a miraculous life akin to Paul in the Book of Acts. The first Chinese pop author to do so was Nora Lam. Her miraculous escape was made into a movie, "China Cry." Alas she was exposed and admitted her lies. 3)Those more familiar with the present situation in China say the Chinese tend to exaggerate to make for a better story. Claims about Watchman Nee made outside of China do not accord with the testimony of those attending the Shanghai Christian Assembly in the 1940'a and 50's. One I spoke to attended his trail in 1956. There are indeed great stories from China about faith in the midst of suffering. Yet they are without mighty power miracles. They read more like "The Hiding Place," than "The Heavenly Man." They are published by small Chinese presses. A further caveat: Christians need to remember the Bible requirement of witnesses. The greater the claims, the greater the need for evidence. Two witnesses for some things; 500 for the more wondrous. In 2001, I visited a Christian church in Xiaolin, Henan. That's the small city famed for "Gungfu." There were no seats in the sanctuary. Many stood before its walls praying. One of the Deacons told me that they wish I could stay and teach them Greek. They are concerned about false doctrine and misinterpretations of Scripture. They desire good seminary/ Bible school instruction more than short-term missionary/evangelists. [Reviewers note: Just checked a new book, "China's Opening Door." Author Dennis Balcombe details some of the mighty events of the Christian church in Bro. Yun's own Henan Province. Nothing about Yun's miracle exploits. Why not? The author did meet him in China just before he left for America. Yun is shown in a picture looking healthy, even athletic. Balcombe details the faith of other Christians there, but not Yun. Why?]

  7. 4 out of 5

    Ebookwormy1

    I'm not sure why I am unable to give this outstanding book 5 stars. While many Christian biographies tend to be weighed down by an author's infatuation with their subject and autobiographies the self-importance of the subject, this book falls into neither of those pits. Indeed, I was incredibly impressed with Brother Yun's humility in admitting his mistakes and missteps. He even shares occasions where the LORD supernaturally directed him (through visions and/or prophecies of others) but he disre I'm not sure why I am unable to give this outstanding book 5 stars. While many Christian biographies tend to be weighed down by an author's infatuation with their subject and autobiographies the self-importance of the subject, this book falls into neither of those pits. Indeed, I was incredibly impressed with Brother Yun's humility in admitting his mistakes and missteps. He even shares occasions where the LORD supernaturally directed him (through visions and/or prophecies of others) but he disregarded the leading and went his own way. He talks about making ministry an idol in his life and trying to balance his responsibilities as pastor with the legitimate claims of his wife and children. He shares about challenges, struggles and imperfections of the house church movement in China, as well as his difficulties in understanding the church of the West. These honest, and seemingly fair, assessments give his accounts of the LORD's miraculous interventions a greater weight. He talks about healings, miracles of many kinds, and the joys and sufferings of the Chinese church, including his own imprisonments and torture. He shares his personal struggles with God, his anguish and questioning of the LORD and his experience of finding Him faithful, again and again. This is a powerful book. Wandering through a difficult valley myself, I found strong identification with his struggles and nourishment for my soul through his experiences. This isn't the best writing you'll ever read, but the frank, conversational style may make it the most sincere. And while it is clear Brother Yun is a man of the Bible (much of his phrasing and metaphor is scriptural) his account lacks the sanctimonious tone that is so off-putting. The first 50ish pages were challenging for me... as someone who struggles with a series of chronic maladies, not one, but TWO miraculous healings almost discouraged me from continuing, but I'm glad I did, and I think others will find this read an excellent investment of their time. Highly recommended. 4 stars. For those who would like more information to complement this biography, I would also recommend Randy Alcorn's historical fiction work "Safely Home" and David Aikman's non-fiction exploration of the Church in China, published as "Jesus in Beijing". ____________ Reading this book again in summer of 2015, and interacting on Goodreads. I thought this comment I posted on a detractor's review would add substance to my review: Ebookwormy: "I did a cursory search on the issues you raised. #1) I cannot find anything that Nora Lam was ever completely discredited nor that she repented. I did, however, find a lot of information about her multi-million dollar ministry and concerns about her finances. But nothing that "proved" her story was false. The matter of Brother Yun seems different. First of all, Brother Yun has NOT made a fortune off his story and does not live a lavish lifestyle of an evangelical mega. Furthermore, this Open Letter from the co-author Paul Hattaway addresses many of the concerns you raise. http://asiaharvest.org/bookstore/open... Finally, it seems the main concern you have is with the miraculous accounts in the book. I've read the book before and happen to be taking another turn through it, and I don't see any bad theology being taught, but I do find myself challenged by the miraculous, as you seem to be. Is it possible that the God of the universe would CHOSE to intervene in countries in which the gospel is oppressed through methods he is not regularly using in open countries? After all, don't most generals bring their most powerful weapons to the front lines of the battle? " _______________________ Finally, there is one other thing I see occurring in the (admittedly few) Goodreads reviews I read. Some people write that 'every Christian' should read this book, or that Brother Yun is so incredible. I think, from the tone of the book, that Brother Yun would agree that he is not the hero. Jesus is the hero. Every Christian, and non-believer too, should read the Bible. This book is helpful and inspiring testimony of a person following Jesus, but Jesus' story in the Bible is the one that saves. Let's stop looking for heroes in Evangelicalism to make us feel superficially good about ourselves and hold tightly to the hero of Jesus Christ who is the only one who can satisfy our souls both here and in for eternity. Update 2018.... I recently completed Jennifer Lin's marvelous Shanghai Faithful. I would commend it to readers of The Heavenly Man. Lin's work is a narrative non-fiction memoir of her Protestant family in China, beginning with the first convert of her lineage in the mid-nineteeth century and continuing to today. Highly recommended. https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

  8. 4 out of 5

    Derek

    We read this as a family a few years back, but the story has never faded. It is definitely one of a kind. Brother Yun went through some of the most extreme torture, both physically and mentally, while he was in China, but he experienced the most important thing in life too, God mercy and grace. He fasted for more the 40 days, I don't remember exactly, but definitely experienced a life empowered by the Holy Spirit. It is intense, but it definitely is a life changing book.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Talia DeBenedictis

    Praise God for the Chinese house church movement! This book is an auto-biography of Brother Yun, a leader of the Chinese house church movement in the midst of the Communist government. A few thoughts/responses: -God has been and IS powerful and miraculous -God doesn’t require our ministry to be in relationship with Him -The opposite of life is not suffering it is the absence of God. In suffering we experience and know Jesus the only means to true joy and peace A quote from the book that captures a Praise God for the Chinese house church movement! This book is an auto-biography of Brother Yun, a leader of the Chinese house church movement in the midst of the Communist government. A few thoughts/responses: -God has been and IS powerful and miraculous -God doesn’t require our ministry to be in relationship with Him -The opposite of life is not suffering it is the absence of God. In suffering we experience and know Jesus the only means to true joy and peace A quote from the book that captures a lot and challenges my faith: “When people hear my testimony they often say, “You must have had a terrible time when you were in prison.” I respond, “What are you talking about? I was with Jesus and had overwhelming joy and peace in his intimate presence.” “ 4 not 5 stars because, I don’t think he would take offense, Brother Yun is not a writer and sometimes the book can feel like a diary.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Mac

    this book is powerful. it's probably the most single, powerful story i've ever come across. it has challenged me more than any other book i've ever read. yun's story (which is completely true) shows what surrendering our lives to Christ looks like. it's a clear picture of what living selflessly looks like, what being willing to go where your sent by God looks like and what trusting Him in unbearable circumstances looks like. and it's a clear picture of what it looks like when God delivers us from this book is powerful. it's probably the most single, powerful story i've ever come across. it has challenged me more than any other book i've ever read. yun's story (which is completely true) shows what surrendering our lives to Christ looks like. it's a clear picture of what living selflessly looks like, what being willing to go where your sent by God looks like and what trusting Him in unbearable circumstances looks like. and it's a clear picture of what it looks like when God delivers us from evil and harm and impossible situations. seriously...this book is ridiculously amazing. i would encourage every believer to read it in order to be encouraged that: a) God is still doing miracles just like He did through Christ and through the early church. He is moving in powerful, practical and real ways. b) God is not limited by anything, including our situations or our limited abilities. c) God is the one true God and He is forgiving, merciful, full of grace and HE LOVES US! just go read the book.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Lindsey (Books for Christian Girls)

    About this book: “It is the intensely dramatic story of how God took a young, half-starved boy from a poor village in Henan province and used him mightily to preach the gospel despite horrific opposition. Brother Yun is one of China’s house church leaders. Instead of focusing on the many miracles or experiences of suffering, however, Yun prefers to focus on the character and beauty of Jesus. Interspersed with his personal account are contributions from his wife, Deling, made mostly during her hu About this book: “It is the intensely dramatic story of how God took a young, half-starved boy from a poor village in Henan province and used him mightily to preach the gospel despite horrific opposition. Brother Yun is one of China’s house church leaders. Instead of focusing on the many miracles or experiences of suffering, however, Yun prefers to focus on the character and beauty of Jesus. Interspersed with his personal account are contributions from his wife, Deling, made mostly during her husband's frequent periods of imprisonment. You will remember where you were the first time you read this life story. It's a watershed book that will turn the reader to prayer and praise.” Series: Non-fiction Spiritual Content- Over 250 Scriptures from title page to back-cover are quoted, mentioned or referenced; An huge, amazing amount of Faith, witnessing and praying; ‘H’s are not capital until the Repentance part at the end; The Lord speaks to Brother Yun many times and sends him visions as well; Many mentions of those in the Bible and book of the Bible; Many songs are sung and written out; Martyrs for the Cross and how they were killed; At very low times, the enemy would tempt Brother Yun. *Note: Many mentions of other religions and demons; “Food was the god of the criminals in that prison.”. Negative Content- Minor cussing including: three forms of ‘stupid’ and four ‘shut up’s (though one I would overlook, see Here! ); Curses are said but not written; Blood & wounds (semi-detailed to can be detailed); Prison, Beatings, and Torture are all afflicted; Mentions and stories of those who were beaten and/or killed for their Christian Faith (it’s heartbreaking, and bluntly put); Mentions of murder; a couple mentions of drowning; Mentions of committing (or thinking about) suicide; Mentions of drinking; Mentions of brain out of it’s skull and feeling like your brain will explode; Mentions of human waste & prisoners urinating on Brother Yun; Pus and oozing sores; Sexual Content- Brother Yun calls the Three-Self Church a ‘harlot’ (it’s repeated and said a total of four times); A few mentions of prostitutes and seduction; A couple cell mates say they raped women (no details); A mention of two women who were kidnapped and used as s*x slaves; A few mentions of abortion and being force not to have any more babies; When talking about his wife, Brother Yun says “After our marriage Deling and I had thought about having a baby, but at the time my name and photo was plastered everywhere by the police so we didn’t get the chance to spend much time together. On one occasion before I was arrested I secretly sneaked home and during that visit my wife conceived.”. *Note: A mention of a mother’s chest (“In those days I was just like a baby sleeping in the arms of his mother, peacefully suckling at his mother’s bosom.”); A couple mentions of private body parts (“The next morning the guards took me out from the cell and practiced martial arts on my body. They killed and pouched me to the ground and ordered several other prisoners to stomp on my chest and private parts.” And “As a result a horrible plague struck, causing many prisoners to die. Infection entered men’s bodies through their backsides and private parts.”) -Brother Yun P.O.V. told by Brother Yun and sometimes his wife, Deling. 372 pages ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~* Pre Teens- One Star New Teens- One Star (and a half) Early High School Teens- Three Stars Older High School Teens- Five Stars My personal Rating- Five Stars Wow. I could start off this review about five different ways. I’m not sure which one to pick. Maybe the one where I start off saying how my heart is in China. Or how I was so excited to read this book. Or that I shockingly didn’t cry at all while reading this novel. Or that I never write or underline in a book, but in this book I did. Or that I’ve never read a book with so many Scriptures in it—or beautiful songs. Or that if I ever meet Brother Yun (who I would probably slip up and call him “Mr. Brother Yun” and pump his hand like a well. And give him a hug. For inspiring me, for opening my eyes even more, for his worshiping through the awful prisons he was in. He says on page 187, “I didn’t suffer for Jesus in prison. No! I was with Jesus and I experienced His very real presence, joy, and peace every day. It’s not those in prison for the sake of the gospel who suffer. The person who suffers is he who never experiences God’s intimate presence.” (capital H mine). I love his look on this. He was beaten horribly every time he was arrested. But yet, he rejoiced become he knew that The Lord had put him there to be a witness. (Which reminds me of Ester 4:14 “And who knows? Perhaps you have been made...for such a time as this.” (VOICE)) And he was. I loved when Brother Yun pointed out this Scripture “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good...” (Genesis 50:20 NASB). That is...perfect for what Brother Yun went through. He was tortured, beaten, attacked spiritually and physically but he stood firm in the Lord, trust and waiting on Him. I want that kind of Faith. I want to share one song Brother Yun sings that I truly love: “First comes blood, then anointing oil First we must be clean then we receive blessing from the Lord First we must experience Calvary, then will come Pentecost. Cross, cross, forever my glory His blood has washed my sins away Only through the blood of Jesus.” I actually did some research and found the music online; you can listen to it for free HERE. Isn’t it beautiful? (Link to sheet musics, words and different versions). I could go on and on about this book. It’s definitely a keeper for me. It was a harsh eye-opening book, but it showed me how the Lord works and that Christ is being shared in a country near to my heart. Link to review: http://booksforchristiangirls.blogspo... *BFCG may (Read the review to see) recommend this book by this author. It does not mean I recommend all the books by this author. *I received this book for free from the Publisher (Monarch Books) for this review.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Joshua

    Lots of controversy surrounds this book regarding whether many of the miracles Brother Yun talks about experiencing in this book really happened or not, since they resemble miracles found in the Bible. I went into reading this book with an open mind because I love a good biography showing God accomplishing His purpose by working through man. To start with, this book is pretty intense. The things that Brother Yun went through are incredibly horrifying that no man should ever have to go through. T Lots of controversy surrounds this book regarding whether many of the miracles Brother Yun talks about experiencing in this book really happened or not, since they resemble miracles found in the Bible. I went into reading this book with an open mind because I love a good biography showing God accomplishing His purpose by working through man. To start with, this book is pretty intense. The things that Brother Yun went through are incredibly horrifying that no man should ever have to go through. The miracles that happen to Yun are pretty incredible as well and I can see why they are met with skepticism. The writing style is quite unique and simplistic and it's obvious at once that Yun has a heart for the Lord. His personality is obvious throughout and centers on being hopeful and joyful in dire circumstances. I understand why people can be quite skeptical as to whether everything really happened or if Yun is just a really great storyteller. But in the end, what I kept on coming back to was the heart of the author and the message. Not only is it encouraging, but Yun's heart for God and evangelism is very contagious. It's not up to me to decide if what Yun experienced was real or not, I'll leave that up to God, but I can't help but think of how many skeptics Jesus had when he performed miracles. It isn't the believability that necessarily makes a miracle a miracle, but the fact that it's so unbelievable. It points to only One who can make the impossible, possible, and that is Christ. While this is a biography about Yun, the story isn't about Yun, it's about Christ working through Yun. And that's the way a good biography should be.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Chris

    This was a fantastic book. It tells the story of Brother Yun, a Chinese Christian who played a significant role in the house church movement of China. His autobiography tells the story of his inspiring devotion to Christ, his multiple imprisonments (and experiences of abuse and torture), and the amazing miraculous ways he has seen God work in his life. It took me a few chapters to get into the book, but then I was hooked. Some parts are especially gripping, including the account of Yun’s miracul This was a fantastic book. It tells the story of Brother Yun, a Chinese Christian who played a significant role in the house church movement of China. His autobiography tells the story of his inspiring devotion to Christ, his multiple imprisonments (and experiences of abuse and torture), and the amazing miraculous ways he has seen God work in his life. It took me a few chapters to get into the book, but then I was hooked. Some parts are especially gripping, including the account of Yun’s miraculous escape from a high security prison. This book was full of wisdom and very encouraging. It has challenged how I see the Christian walk and what I want my life to look like. This is now one of my favorite biographies, which puts it in some great company!

  14. 4 out of 5

    Maureen Russell

    Wow, so good. Unbelievable (yet true!) stories of miracles and persecution. And a faith that proves genuine through it all. So inspiring! Definitely for mature audiences. But highly recommend.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Brian

    We in the West have such cushy lives. Even when things go badly for us, especially as Christians, we cry out to God and say "why are you letting this happen to me?" We think we deserve the good stuff--you know, as though it's our birthright to not have to suffer. This book will forever nag me when I complain. What I endure as "hardship," no matter how severe it may be will pale to what this man, and literally millions of others around the world endure daily in the form of persecution for what the We in the West have such cushy lives. Even when things go badly for us, especially as Christians, we cry out to God and say "why are you letting this happen to me?" We think we deserve the good stuff--you know, as though it's our birthright to not have to suffer. This book will forever nag me when I complain. What I endure as "hardship," no matter how severe it may be will pale to what this man, and literally millions of others around the world endure daily in the form of persecution for what they believe. Martyrdom and persecution may seem a quaint relic of ancient history, people who burned or thrown before lions. The reality is that Christians all over the world are imprisoned, tortured, and discriminated against in real deleterious ways right now. In our life time. This book will challenge you because it will confront you with questions we don't want to think about. Do you really believe God can reveal himself to those who only have a vague idea of who he is? Do you believe God can miraculously provide his word for people who long to receive it but don't know how to find it? Do you believe physical and emotional suffering for the cause of Christ can yield a greater intimacy with him? Can you imagine choosing the suffering over enticement of relief that recanting would bring? Do you think that miracles have ceased, and God no longer works as he did in biblical times? For believers, the stories in this book will challenge you with things you've been taught about how God works. It will challenge you with your own personal beliefs, and may make you wonder what you will someday do when faced with similar challenges. For unbelievers, this book will force you to confront one question: Is it true? We can call Yun stubborn, extremist, even insane. We can try to explain away the miracles, the dreams, the healings, and his endurance. What Yun knew however, is that even his suffering, as brutal and inhumane as it was, was a drop in the bucket compared to the suffering of Christ for us as he bore our sin.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Mary Garcia

    Two years ago, I tried to read this very same book, but not even halfway through I stopped because of lack of interest. Now I see that it's required reading for our Values Ed class in school so I decided to finish it in advance. The same problem went up again. The writing style just failed to captivate me and bring me "inside" the story and so I was eager to finish it just to get it done with. But as I progressed, I got used to the blunt writing style and really got sucked into the story which, i Two years ago, I tried to read this very same book, but not even halfway through I stopped because of lack of interest. Now I see that it's required reading for our Values Ed class in school so I decided to finish it in advance. The same problem went up again. The writing style just failed to captivate me and bring me "inside" the story and so I was eager to finish it just to get it done with. But as I progressed, I got used to the blunt writing style and really got sucked into the story which, in itself, is really captivating. I presume this book would be even better if the writing style was improved, but because of the story that really blesses the reader, I'm sure you'll find it worth reading, too. There were in some cases I wished there were more descriptive sentences because I'd really want to feel the emotions that move me and the basic sentences felt fast-paced and run-on to me. Still, while reading the book, I found myself rethinking so many things and by the end, I actually wanted more. I really recommend this to Christians looking to improve their faith and loyalty to the Lord. I promise it will not disappoint.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Judi

    A difficult book to read, but also a very powerful book that every Christian should read. Now I see why the church in North America is so weak. We are not truly committed to going to all the world and making disciples of all men, as Jesus commanded his disciples before ascending to heaven. From a western point of view it is hard to understand how Brother Yun was willing and able to go through incredible suffering for the sake of Christ. We shrink from suffering, not even willing to risk the disa A difficult book to read, but also a very powerful book that every Christian should read. Now I see why the church in North America is so weak. We are not truly committed to going to all the world and making disciples of all men, as Jesus commanded his disciples before ascending to heaven. From a western point of view it is hard to understand how Brother Yun was willing and able to go through incredible suffering for the sake of Christ. We shrink from suffering, not even willing to risk the disapproval of others, let alone risking our lives. Yet Brother Yun's suffering and perseverance, and that of uncounted Chinese who have given all for Christ, brought the gospel to millions of people in mainland China, incredible fruit born out of severe suffering. Like Jesus' original group of disciples, most of these Chinese men and women were poor and uneducated. In this autobiographical book, Brother Yun recounts not only his excruciating punishment and imprisonments by Chinese authorities, but he also reveals his own inner struggles and suffering. This book has truly touched my life, and I need to read and reread it. So do other Christians.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Loraine

    The true life story of Brother Yun. Liu Zhenying took Christ as his Savior at the age of 16 in 1974. For the following 27 years, he was a leader in the Christian movement in China which led to two imprisonments, many incarcerations, and persecution, torture and life beyond our imagination. This book truly made me realize how easy it is to take our faith for granted in those countries where freedom of religion is truly a freedom. While in more recent times, there has been more and more dispa The true life story of Brother Yun. Liu Zhenying took Christ as his Savior at the age of 16 in 1974. For the following 27 years, he was a leader in the Christian movement in China which led to two imprisonments, many incarcerations, and persecution, torture and life beyond our imagination. This book truly made me realize how easy it is to take our faith for granted in those countries where freedom of religion is truly a freedom. While in more recent times, there has been more and more disparagement of Christians here in the US, we still have no understanding at all of what it truly means to stand up and live for our faith knowing that it may truly cost us our lives. Brother Yun finally escaped to Myanmar and then on to Germany where he is now a German citizen and still fights for the Christians of China. An overpowering and bold testimony by this man.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Greg Bodwell

    This book showed me many things including that I suffer and sacrifice very little for Jesus. It was convicting and also incredibly encouraging to read of God's amazing work in China and Brother Yun's heart for the gospel. The church truly does thrive in times of persecution as Christians must rely on God for everything. I highly recommend this book!

  20. 4 out of 5

    Brandi McPeak

    Must read I legit have no words. I kept thinking the book would end bc of this struggle or that but it didn’t. This man has endured more then his share, for sure.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jimmy

    It is incredible to think that this book is the autobiography of a Christian who began evangelizing and preaching at the age of 16 under the rule and persecution of communist China. It is a heart-wrenching read as Brother Yun describe living the Christian life--from the serious famine of Bibles, illegal Church meetings, and evangelizing different parts of China. The most grueling part of the book is to read of his time imprisoned for the faith. Reading about his imprisonment seems so different t It is incredible to think that this book is the autobiography of a Christian who began evangelizing and preaching at the age of 16 under the rule and persecution of communist China. It is a heart-wrenching read as Brother Yun describe living the Christian life--from the serious famine of Bibles, illegal Church meetings, and evangelizing different parts of China. The most grueling part of the book is to read of his time imprisoned for the faith. Reading about his imprisonment seems so different than reading the account of those who were POWs--Brother Yun's testimony gives hope of one who is living out the Christian life in a situation that most people would survive by being driven by hate. No review of this book would be worth it's salt if one doesn't acknowledge the massive amount of tales of the miraculous and the supernatural. I am not one who is prone to Charistmatic and Penecostal expectation of signs, wonders and miracles, but I got to say that his final escape from the maximum prison in China was probably the greatest climax of the book. I read this book as Chinese American who is born in the US, and I cannot help but to think about my own unbelieving father who grew up under Communist China and suffered greatly during his time there. I know there were Christians my dad has met in China--from the songs he heard people sing that are based upon the Scriptures that have been so powerfully set in his heart, that decades later when he heard it again he is deeply moved. Beyond the Charismatic and Cessasionist debate, this book is a great and encouraging testimony and I would even say a great indictment of the conditions of the Church in the West that is struggling with materialism, fame and even simple obedience. I also found the author's discussion and that of his wife about the type of persecution in the West to be fascinating. The wife wrote a line that I always say to people and was surprise how she said it like I would often say at church: It's not the nonbelievers persecution that bothers me the most, but that which comes from believers and so-called believers in the form of character assassination, gossips and down right lies. That hurts the most. And she sees this form of persecution in the west to be unbelievable. Good work--I read this book thinking of where I was in my life while all these events was going on in the life of Brother Yun and other Chinese Christians persecuted for their faith. Definitely convicting.

  22. 5 out of 5

    James Seawel

    My rating of books is far more about how much I enjoy them, the impact they have, and how they make me feel than the actual quality or merit. Perhaps due to translation from the Chinese or for whatever other possible factor, Heavenly Man isn't very well written. It reads sort of like a collection of journal entries and letters kind of flung together. However, Brother Yun's story/testimony, as well as his wife's and various other co-workers and friends, is nothing short of miraculous. What a beau My rating of books is far more about how much I enjoy them, the impact they have, and how they make me feel than the actual quality or merit. Perhaps due to translation from the Chinese or for whatever other possible factor, Heavenly Man isn't very well written. It reads sort of like a collection of journal entries and letters kind of flung together. However, Brother Yun's story/testimony, as well as his wife's and various other co-workers and friends, is nothing short of miraculous. What a beautiful story of love and devotion to God! This book is so deeply touching on a spiritual level. Yun is beaten, tortured, abused, imprisoned, and separated from his family over the course of several decades because he refuses to renounce Christ in Communist China. The more they beat him, the more he relies on God . . . and in the process leads hundreds of fellow prisoners and even guards to Jesus. This is not a name it and claim it, Christianity is fun kind of book, it's like the life of Paul in contemporary China. I think mainstream American Christians would struggle with this one as a life of suffering and struggle, albeit many victories as well, is emphasized. The supernatural is also a focus, but not in terms of pay-raises and Lexuses for your faith... I think this one might be a struggle for a non-believer as much of it would be hard to prove and hard to grasp. Nevertheless, I've loved every minute of reading it.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Mad Russian the Traveller

    There are two major groups of readers that will benefit from this book. Those who are Christians will benefit by learning what it really means to follow Christ, and you will be challenged to live up to what Jesus Christ has taught. It is also a lesson on how a follower of Christ must cultivate a close relationship with Jesus in order be used by God to extend the mercy of God to those He has chosen to receive it. This is also a warning of what Christians in the West may be soon experiencing as th There are two major groups of readers that will benefit from this book. Those who are Christians will benefit by learning what it really means to follow Christ, and you will be challenged to live up to what Jesus Christ has taught. It is also a lesson on how a follower of Christ must cultivate a close relationship with Jesus in order be used by God to extend the mercy of God to those He has chosen to receive it. This is also a warning of what Christians in the West may be soon experiencing as the US government has repudiated the principles of liberty in exchange for the fleeting materialism of this present age. If you are a Christian, wake up to the realization of your idolatry (especially toward the State), and repent. If you are of the other group of those not Christian who read this book, you can still benefit from the knowledge of the true nature of the State and it's relationship to dissidents of conscience. Learn well these lessons as you watch the flushing of liberty in America and it's embrace of the Police State. Novo Visum Neue Ansicht a post script: In anticipation of objections to my recommendation of this book, I want to point out that even if I don't share the particular theology of Brother Yun, I don't doubt this man's love for Christ. How many of us in the West, have had to be beaten and tortured for our faith in the triune creator God?

  24. 4 out of 5

    Stacey

    An Amazing book, with much to think about after I have finished. I do not want to stay in the same place after reading this book but I am encouraged to become more like Christ and surrender my life again to his call. So many parts stood out, the faithfulness of the church in China, in the midst of persecution.... Brother Yun says, "Don't pray for the persecution to stop! We shouldn't pray for a lighter load to carry, but a stronger back to endure! Then the world will see that God is with us, emp An Amazing book, with much to think about after I have finished. I do not want to stay in the same place after reading this book but I am encouraged to become more like Christ and surrender my life again to his call. So many parts stood out, the faithfulness of the church in China, in the midst of persecution.... Brother Yun says, "Don't pray for the persecution to stop! We shouldn't pray for a lighter load to carry, but a stronger back to endure! Then the world will see that God is with us, empowering us to live in a way that reflects his love and power." He talked about a time when the western church started smuggling other christian materials into China along with the bibles, and the disunity that followed within the home churches, where previously there was none. I was also encouraged by the house churches of China's focus on missions. Yes, they have much to do in their own country, but they are also spreading the gospel to other unreached people groups in "the back to Jerusalem movement. " He also had an entreaty to the church in America to wake up, and had a lot of truth concerning the current state of the church and misplaced priorities. I highly recommend this book--it is the book of Acts at work today...

  25. 4 out of 5

    David

    This is a great testimony type book by Brother Yun, his wife and close friends. Their testimonies are added to the book to bear witnesses to Yun's testimony since the stories are fantastic about what God did for him and what sufferings he endured. It was as if I were reading the book of Acts. I am sure that some who read this book will think his stories have been exaggerated but if half the stories are are true and the way they really happened, the sufferings and experiences are far more than mo This is a great testimony type book by Brother Yun, his wife and close friends. Their testimonies are added to the book to bear witnesses to Yun's testimony since the stories are fantastic about what God did for him and what sufferings he endured. It was as if I were reading the book of Acts. I am sure that some who read this book will think his stories have been exaggerated but if half the stories are are true and the way they really happened, the sufferings and experiences are far more than most Christians in America have seen in a life time. After reading this book, I felt convicted about complaining about anything and became much aware of my spiritual or physical weaknesses and inability to endure any significant suffering. Obviously, we will never be able to endure what Yun and his friends did without God's grace. This book does make one evaluate themselves and pray to remain faithful under pressure as Yun has done and all the saints have in Christian history. It reminds all of us to pray and continually ask God for help and grace less we become like those who fail when we are tested and asked to glorify God in our suffering.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Stu

    To be honest, I was first put off by the title "The Heavenly Man." I just assumed that Brother Yun was lacking in humility. Boy, was I wrong! In reading this book I understood that when Brother Yun was arrested for preaching the good news of Jesus, the communist thugs would torture him for information about the location of other Christians. They drilled him over and over for places where the underground church met. When asked what town he was from, he said "Heaven" in order to protect his Christ To be honest, I was first put off by the title "The Heavenly Man." I just assumed that Brother Yun was lacking in humility. Boy, was I wrong! In reading this book I understood that when Brother Yun was arrested for preaching the good news of Jesus, the communist thugs would torture him for information about the location of other Christians. They drilled him over and over for places where the underground church met. When asked what town he was from, he said "Heaven" in order to protect his Christian friends. This book is filled with amazing and miraculous stories of God's provision. If you are a follower of Jesus, this is an faith-building read. Having said that, even the non-religoius will find Brother Yun's story of standing up for his beliefs in the face of persecution to be inspiring. It is believed that there are more Christians in China than any other country on this planet. This book helps the church in the West catch a glimpse of what God is doing throughout Asia. I will go on to say that went ahead and read the two subsequent books: Back to Jerusalem and Living Waters. Both were excellent.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Carol

    This is the biography of Liu Zhenying. At the age of 16,Lui took Christ as his savior. He began a challenging life of commitment to Christ. Lui, who is better known to all as Brother Yun, suffered torture,abuse and imprisonments but still remained devoted to Christ. This was a very powerful to read. The language in the book was easy to read but the content addressing how the Chinese Christians live in danger because of their faith was hard to digest…..beatings, forced abortions, sterilizations, i This is the biography of Liu Zhenying. At the age of 16,Lui took Christ as his savior. He began a challenging life of commitment to Christ. Lui, who is better known to all as Brother Yun, suffered torture,abuse and imprisonments but still remained devoted to Christ. This was a very powerful to read. The language in the book was easy to read but the content addressing how the Chinese Christians live in danger because of their faith was hard to digest…..beatings, forced abortions, sterilizations, isolation, nakedness, imprisonment without a trial, starvation and any kind of torture and abuse possible. But these souls survive by offering their sufferings to Christ. It is scary how people in our country take religious freedom for granted. Would you be ready to endure the physical punishment to defend your belief in Christ? This book will make you take a closer look and appreciate the freedoms God has provided to us by sending His son to suffer and die for our redemption. You will never forget reading Brother Yun’s story. Thank you to book fun.org for this Book. My opinion is my own.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Phil Morgan

    I had this book on my (real world) bookshelf for several years, but had not gotten around to reading it through. I was inspired to pick it up after reading "Safely Home" by Randy Alcorn. So glad I did. What a challenging and inspiring read. Despite some malicious attempts to discredit his testimony, Brother Yun's story has been vouched for by other well known house church leaders from China. Some of the early chapters left me very convicted about our Western versions of Christianity, but the final I had this book on my (real world) bookshelf for several years, but had not gotten around to reading it through. I was inspired to pick it up after reading "Safely Home" by Randy Alcorn. So glad I did. What a challenging and inspiring read. Despite some malicious attempts to discredit his testimony, Brother Yun's story has been vouched for by other well known house church leaders from China. Some of the early chapters left me very convicted about our Western versions of Christianity, but the final chapters are extraordinarily encouraging. Brother Yun is generous toward non-Chinese Christians and points out that persecution comes in differing forms. He left me with a strong desire to live "sold-out" for Jesus Christ no matter what that will ever mean in my own life. Read the book! Jesus is alive and His kingdom is advancing in the power of the Holy Spirit around the globe today. The gates of hell cannot stand against it.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Andrew

    In stark contrast to a lot of what I like to read, this book is in fact the true story of a real man who, to the best of my knowledge, is still very much alive today. Brother Yun is a Chinese Christian, and this book tells the story of his Christian journey and the horrific treatment he has endured as he lives out his faith. It also brings glory to God through accounts of the amazing things he has done in Brother Yun's life, rescuing him from all manner of torture and imprisonment and sustaining In stark contrast to a lot of what I like to read, this book is in fact the true story of a real man who, to the best of my knowledge, is still very much alive today. Brother Yun is a Chinese Christian, and this book tells the story of his Christian journey and the horrific treatment he has endured as he lives out his faith. It also brings glory to God through accounts of the amazing things he has done in Brother Yun's life, rescuing him from all manner of torture and imprisonment and sustaining him through the trials he faced daily. This is the book that got me reading my Bible again -- I would strongly recommend it to anyone who wants a view of what God is doing right now in the lives of real people alive today.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Kimberly

    I was very excited to read this book as I have heard about Brother Yun but had not read his story. Brother Yun received Christ when he was a young man and from the time of his acceptance he had repeated visions from God. When he faced imprisonment and torture for his belief he would come out of it praising God all the louder. Written from his perspective, with assistance from Paul Hattaway, this book opens the eyes of Christians everywhere of how a journey with God may not always be easy, but it I was very excited to read this book as I have heard about Brother Yun but had not read his story. Brother Yun received Christ when he was a young man and from the time of his acceptance he had repeated visions from God. When he faced imprisonment and torture for his belief he would come out of it praising God all the louder. Written from his perspective, with assistance from Paul Hattaway, this book opens the eyes of Christians everywhere of how a journey with God may not always be easy, but it is always rewarding. Thank you to Brother Yun, Monarch books and bookfun.org for allowing me to read this book in exchange for my honest review.

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