“My dear wife died while I was in prison. I was not allowed to attend her funeral. It was like an arrow of the Almighty until I understood that God allows the pain, the loss, the torture, but we must grow through it.” Samuel Lamb: 1925-2013
“OMF International 9formerly China Inland Mission) reports the number of Christians in China in 1949 was 1 million. Today, the group estimates the number at 70 million.”
Early in his ministry, Chinese pastor Samuel Lamb often kept a small bag with clothes, shoes, and a toothbrush near his front door. The travel case wasn’t for weekend getaways: The leader in China’s underground church movement stayed ready for police to arrest him for his Christian activities.
Lamb didn’t resent it. His life spanned the remarkable surge of Christianity in China over the last half century—and he often said he could summarize his life and ministry in one principle: “more persecution, more growth.”
Lamb, who encountered both persecution and growth in extraordinary ways during his lifetime, died on Aug. 3 at age 88.
Lamb was born in a mountainous region near Macau in 1925. His father was a Baptist pastor, and Lamb began preaching his own sermons when he was 19 years old. By the mid-1950s, Chinese communist leader Mao Zedong began the first waves of persecution against many Chinese citizens, including Christians.
When Lamb refused to register his house church with the government, authorities arrested him in 1958. The sentence: Twenty years of hard labor. Lamb spent most of the next two decades working in brutal coal mines, but he also taught Christianity to others suffering in the camp. Continue reading