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Comparing North Korea’s Juche and Christianity

Juche (JOO-chay) is a way of life in North Korea. Juche falsely teaches that humans are the master of everything.

People in North Korea have very few rights and freedoms compared to people in most other countries. But the North Korean government tries to make their people believe they are very blessed and free.

Recently North Korea published a “human rights report” to tell the world about all the “rights” enjoyed by North Korean citizens. The report said:

“In [North Korea] everybody is fully provided with the rights to choose and follow their own religion and thought according to their own free will.”

But the report also says, “Every citizen has chosen to follow the Juche idea.”

North Korea has more than 24 million people. It is unlikely that all of them truly believe in Juche teachings. In truth, the government expects the people to follow Juche and to honor their leaders as gods. People who participate in Christian activities or associate with Christians are threatened or punished. Many Christians are in prison.

The chart below compares Juche teachings with biblical Christianity.

To find out more about North Korea and North Korean Christians:

Juche (JOO-chay)
Christianity
Founder Kim Il Sung, the past leader of North Korea Jesus Christ. Christians follow Jesus as the Son of God.
Followers It is estimated that more than 20 million people are followers of Juche. Almost all of them live in North Korea, where citizens are forced to honor Juche. About 2 billion of the world’s people are Christians.
Calendars The Juche calendar starts with 1912, the birth year of Kim Il Sung, calling it the year 1. The year 2014 is the year 103 on the Juche calendar. The Gregorian calendar, used around the world today, continues a system that marked the years before (B.C.) and after (A.D.) the earthly life of Christ.
Worship North Koreans are required to give all honor and glory to Kim Il Sung and to his son Kim Jong Il (who are now dead), and to the current leader, Kim Jong Un. Citizens bow and offer gifts to statues of the men. Christians believe, “You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve” (Matthew 4:10). They do not serve or bow to images or idols (Exodus 20:4).
Who is the Master? Juche teaches that human beings are the masters of the world and of their own destiny. Jesus said, “Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well, for so I am” (John 13:13, KJV). Jesus said, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth” (Matthew 28:18).
Eternal life Most Juche teachings are only about what happens in this life. However, Juche followers believe they can have a kind of “immortal life” by being a useful part of their “immortal” country. The Bible says, “He who believes in the Son has everlasting life” (John 3:36). Jesus said, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away” (Matthew 24:35).

Comparing God in the Bible and Allah in the Quran

Allah in the Quran
God in the Bible
The Word
Muslims believe Allah revealed his word to a man named Mohammed through an angel. The words were written down in the Muslims’ holy book, the Quran. God’s Word is a person, Jesus Christ, who reveals God to us and provides believers in Him a way to become children of God (John 1:1–14).
The Father
Muslims do not believe Allah is a father to humans (Quran 5:18). The Quran does not say that Allah seeks to redeem those lost in sin, or that he loves sinners (Quran 4:107). God is a loving heavenly Father. We love Him because He first loved us, even while we were sinners. He sent Jesus to save us. (See Romans 5:8, 2 Corinthians 6:18, and I John 4:19)
The Son
The Quran, which is the word of Allah, says only liars say Allah has a son (Quran 37:152). Many verses in the Quran say Jesus is not the son of Allah. Jesus is the Son of God (John 3:16, Matthew 3:17).
Judgment
Muslims believe Allah will judge people and will approve only those who have done enough good deeds (Quran 7:8,9). God is perfect. He can accept nothing less than perfection. But all have sinned and fallen short of God’s standards. Jesus’ death on the cross allows us to be forgiven and accepted by a perfect God (Romans 3:21–26).

Comparing Beliefs about Heaven in the Quran and the Bible

The Quran (the Muslim holy book)
The Bible
Getting to heaven
Muslims believe the good deeds they do in their life will be weighed on Judgment Day. People who have done enough good deeds will go to heaven, or paradise. No one knows how many good deeds are “enough” (Quran Chapter 7, Verse 8; and 23:102, 103). Trying to “be good” is not enough for salvation. No one is righteous enough to deserve to go to heaven. Salvation is by the grace of God for those who believe in Jesus. (See Ephesians 2:8,9 and Romans 3:10.)
Marriage in heaven
Wives will enter heaven with their husbands, according to the Quran (Quran 43:70). Jesus said, “At the resurrection people will neither marry nor be given in marriage” (Matthew 22:30, NIV).
Earthly pleasures
Muslims believe they will enjoy fine food and drink, nice clothes and jewelry, and good companions in heaven (Quran 18:32). The Bible says that people in heaven will no longer be hungry and thirsty. There will be no more crying or pain because “the old order of things has passed away” (Revelation 7:16,17 and 21:4, NIV). Things will not be as they were during their life on earth.
Heavenly joys
Muslims believe they will enjoy the same things in heaven that many people enjoy on earth. Christians believe “no eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love Him” (1 Corinthians 2:9, NIV). They believe that following Jesus brings more than earthly kinds of rewards. Believers in heaven will enjoy fellowship with God forever, serving and praising Him (Revelation 7:15).

Comparing Christianity and Secular Humanism

World Humanism Day is observed on June 21st, the longest day of the year. Read the chart below to learn how humanist beliefs compare with traditional Christian beliefs.

Secular Humanism
Christianity
What are they? Secular humanism  is a “life stance” that does not look to God to solve problems or give guidance. Secular humanists rely on science and education to improve the world. Christianity is the faith of those who follow Jesus. Christians rely on the Holy Spirit to guide them to the truth (John 16:13).
God Secular humanists believe that people are part of nature. They believe humans control their own destiny and that people may choose to believe whether or not God exists, and if there is life after death. But many secular humanists believe in neither. Christians believe God created people in His own image (Genesis 1:27). He controls times, seasons, and even earthly rulers (Daniel 2:21). God’s Word says that after death, there is life and judgment. (See 1 Corinthians 15:22)
Holy Book Secular humanists believe that Jesus was just a human teacher, not the Son of God. The Bible explains how Jesus, the Son of God, gave His life so that humans can have a relationship with God. He said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6, NIV).
The problem for humans Secular humanists believe that many problems are caused by ignorance and a lack of education. “Secular humanists…reject the idea that God…can save or redeem us.” (Source: The Council for Secular Humanism) All people are sinful (Romans 3:23). Wisdom and learning cannot save us from sin apart from Christ. (See Matthew 11:25–27 and 1 Corinthians 1:26–30.)

Comparing Life under Communism and in Free Countries

Life under Communism
Life in Free Countries
Rights The needs of the whole society are more important than the rights of individuals. Individual rights are just as important as the needs of the whole society.
Worship Communist teachings say that God is not necessary. Belief in the God of the Bible is forbidden or strongly discouraged. The government tries to control public worship. People have more freedom to worship God the way they believe is right.
Free Speech
Government officials do not want anyone to say bad things about them, so the government controls newspapers, television stations, and radio stations. People can voice their opinions, even if they want to complain about the government.
Property Communist governments control property. Leaders might decide to let people own some businesses, but they can change their minds, because the government is still in control. People have a right to own homes and businesses.