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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).