Monday, April 27, 2009

The North Korean Martyr Who Was Killed Twice!

North Korea's church history is rich with accounts of martyrs. We know this is information that the church of Christ treasures, and we pass it on to you.

We're studying Korean Church History and have gotten to the war years, "II" and Korean. It was during this time that young Christian teacher Sung Du died twice.

When the Japanese ruled Korea in the early part of the 20th century, this novice yielded to pressure and began to worship at the shrines set up by the invaders. What a disappointment he became to himself and his peers. Not unlike our own falling away under the pressures of materialism... but that's another story.

Sung Du repented. "I will die before denying the faith again!" he promised. He was given that very opportunity. Twice. He accepted it both times. One canceled out his denial, and the other... We will allow God to offer His own praises on that day, but isn't it wonderful that a man like Peter, who denied 3 times, was permitted to accept 3 times (John 21)?

Sung Du went to seminary to prepare for the ministry. Ordination followed. His first assignment was a church near Suyang-Ch'on. The Japanese were gone. But the Koreans, under Communism, turned out to be worse. He was arrested and sent to a mine as a slave laborer, a practice which continues to this "enlightened" age of our own in dark Chosun.

Brother Sung believed that the first day of the week is the Lord's Day and that work should not be done then. He refused! He was therefore beaten. This is the Communist response to any number of ills. They beat him so badly that it seemed he was dead. Since he was "dead", they threw the "corpse" into the river. Watching church members dived in when the Communists went away, and pulled his body out .

They took him back to the village to prepare him for burial. But - and I know you are way ahead of me- he was not dead! (Sounds like a Dae Joyoung episode, only this one is true!).

Months later he was again preaching, almost as strong a testimony as raised Lazarus. But the Communists arrested him again. This time they shot him. They wanted to be sure.

Of course we know the rest of the story. Sung Du woke up once more, in the arms of His Saviour, and he waits there for the rest of us to die for Jesus and join him there. Are we willing to die, even once?

(Some of preceding ideas from Hefley's By Their Blood.)

Thank God for the Korean believers! is a website I put together a few months back to get the word out to believers that they need to pray for North Korea. Just about every day I'm writing a blog featuring some news, a book, or a story of North Korea. There's a live news feed on the site, lists of resources, picture essays, and ways to respond to the overwhelming need in North Korea. Let's love Chosun together!

And who am I? A man found of God over 50 years ago, called to the ministry, serving the Lord as needed in my world. Married, member of a local church in the Chicago area, with full time work in public education. Who are you? Would love to fellowship with believers who respond on my site.

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