Parables and Insights of Sadhu Sundar Singh
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When he was fourteen years old, in , his mother and older brother died. In , C. He was exposed to Christianity for a year in a local school provided by American Presbyterian missionaries, but the more he heard of the New Testament, the more he resented it. He quit the school. He finally burned a New Testament in public to express his outrage. Later, Sundar Singh saw that his fanatical opposition to Christianity had disguised a secret attraction to it.
His father disapproved of his Bible burning as much as his obsession with proper Indian religions and wondered if his son was losing his sanity. Indeed, on December 17, , fifteen-year-old Sundar Singh told his father goodbye and announced that he would commit suicide before breakfast. He fully planned to lie down on the railroad tracks near his house and be run over by the 5 a. He begged and begged God to reveal Himself before the train came.
Suddenly such a great light appeared in his small room that he looked to make sure the house was not on fire. Remember that I gave My life for you upon the Cross. Up to that moment I hated Jesus Christ and did not worship Him. If I were talking of Buddha I might have imagined it, for I was in the habit of worshipping him. It was no dream. It was reality, the Living Christ!
Sundar Singh fell down before Jesus and worshipped him. Peace and joy finally flooded his soul. The family pressured him to abandon his new faith, then finally drove him away. It is said that his last meal at home was poisoned. His friend Gardit Singh, who became a Christian at the same time, actually died from poisoned food.
SADHU SUNDAR SINGH AND THE NON‐CHRISTIAN RELIGIONS
In the local uproar, the mission station had to be closed down and village Christians moved away for safety. Sundar Singh went to study the Bible at a medical mission station. Because it was unlawful to be baptized until he turned sixteen, he was baptized an Anglican Christian on his birthday, Sunday, September 3, His teacher advised him to get theological training, but he felt called to preach the gospel as a traditional Indian holy man instead. Thirty-three days after his baptism, Sundar Singh put on the yellow linen robe of a celibate sadhu and set out with only a Hindustani New Testament and a blanket which he often wrapped around his head as a turban.
He used no money, and he never begged; when no one offered him food and shelter, he did without. He also did without the protective dagger that Sikh men always carry. When someone asked him if stones did not cut his bare feet, he answered that his feet were so hard they cut the stones. As a typical Sikh, Sundar Singh was just over six feet tall, with a full beard and luminous dark eyes.
His eyes showed deep inner peace and drew people to him. He stood erect, his body poised. Animals and children were always attracted to him.
The Story of Sadhu Sundar Singh | Hell | Jesus
He loved to play with children, and he had a sense of humor. When Jesus was mentioned, his whole face lit up with a joyful radiance. After his vision on December 18, , he had just one passionate interest-loving and serving Jesus. Thus he wandered around India and to Afghanistan and Kashmir preaching Christ.
He joined Samuel Stokes, an American missionary who had left his wealthy family in order to try to live like Saint Francis of Assisi in India; together the two friends worked in a leper colony and then in the Plague Hospital in Lahore. He remained an Anglican all his life and preached often in Anglican churches, but as a preacher he refused to be bound to one denomination.
To him all Christianity was one. Sundar Singh also respected the religions that had nurtured him as a child, and he saw them fulfilled in Christ. He believed in giving people the living water of God in the cup of their own culture, not in a foreign cup.
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He felt a special calling to preach to the dangerous, inaccessible land of Tibet, and he made many almost impossible trips there on foot. Wherever he went in India, both Christians and nonChristians thronged to see and hear him. In Penang, Malaysia, he was invited to preach the message of Jesus in a Sikh temple. They were reconciled at the very time when C. Lewis and his father became estranged after World War I.
At this time C. Lewis was a student at Oxford. Sundar Singh was told by God to preach in England, and his father offered to pay for the journey. In February he arrived in England and stayed first at a Quaker center. It is highly likely that C. Lewis heard that Sundar Singh was speaking in Oxford at the time, but it is unlikely that Lewis went to hear him. In the first place, Lewis was especially busy that month. At the age of twentyone Lewis found Christianity distasteful.
From Oxford the Sadhu went to London, where he preached to great crowds in a variety of major churches, including the Baptist Metropolitan Tabernacle. At Church House, Westminster, he addressed a meeting of seven hundred Anglican clergymen, including several bishops and the Archbishop of Canterbury. He also spoke at Trinity College, Cambridge, and crossed to Paris to preach. Then he went to Ireland and on to Scotland, where he preached in leading Presbyterian churches in Glasgow and Edinburgh. Sundar Singh was not puffed up by international popularity. His beggar-like existence, his intense devotion, his mystical encounters with Jesus, and his simple yet profound parables became the stuff of legends.
No one who met him - including the thousands who flocked to hear him during his visits to Europe, the Far East, and the United States - remained unaffected. Known in his lifetime as India's most famous convert to Christianity, Sundar Singh would not approve of that characterization. He loved Jesus and devoted his life to knowing and following him, but he never accepted Christianity's cultural conventions, even as he embraced its stark original teachings. Wisdom of the Sadhu, a collection of anecdotes, sayings, parables, and meditations, brings together the best of Sundar Singh's teachings.
Therefore, He has given the state of sin a new aspect so that even from it He has brought forth the noblest results. ONE -- It is because of the state of sin that God's boundless love was made manifest to man through the incarnation and redemption accomplished by Jesus. Except for 'the state of sin' we would never have known the depths God's love would go to save us. TWO--Because man has tasted the bitterness of sin , he will more richly enjoy the happiness of heaven.
How easily we take take things for granted until we experience the lack of them. Jesus said to Sadhu, "In heaven they sin no more, but in meekness and obedient love they serve their Father God and abide with Him in joy for evermore. While some people are so sensitive to quickly turn from or repent from a committed sin, others appear to be completely unfeeling and callous to the fact that sin is present in their lives.
Jesus used the example of a leper, whose disease has made him completely insensitive to the things that are destroying his body. So also the heart and mind of man, by reason of unconfessed sin, become dull and unconscious of the disgust and pain sin awareness should bring him. Jesus expressed a warning to Sandu. He pointed out that it is not necessary that every part of the body become weak or useless before death occurs.
A blow on the head can suffice to cause death even though the rest of the body is in perfect health. So also one sin can have such a poisonous effect on the mind and heart of man that it can ruin his spiritual life.
The Allure of Sin Why is it that we struggle so hard against the temptation of sin? Jesus used the example of a moth.
We have all watched a moth, fascinated by the brilliancy of a flame fly straight into it and die. It did not think or consider the burning and destructive power of the flame.
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So man is like the moth. He too disregards the destructive poison of sin and feeling only its alluring power rushes in to his eternal destruction. In contrast, Jesus, the Light of this world, desires to rescue the sinner who comes to His Light and to bestow upon him life and enduring happiness.