Friday, September 24, 2010

Tortured For Christ by Richard Wurmbrand

Free copies of Tortured For Christ by Richard Wurmbrand can be obtained by clicking here. The book is an autobiography and tells the story of the tortures that the founder of the Voice of the Martyrs received for the faith while spending 15 years in a Romanian prison. I had a couple problems with the book. Wurmbrand was a Lutheran minister but seemed to be a supporter of decision theology and at times throughout the book regards theological disputes as irrelevant. Still, the book is extraordinarily valuable.

The book gives us a glimpse into the lives of Christians suffering real persecution. The Bible presents us with a picture of persecution as being part of the ordinary Christian's life but we don't feel it as much in America. In America people think they are being persecuted if the lady at the check-out doesn't with them a Merry Christmas. But throughout much of the world, Christians still suffer persecution. We should support them both in our prayers and in other ways.

The book reminds us of the real evils of communism. In a more general way the book shows the danger of civil religion. As the book shows, communism was helped along by the church. For various reasons, they saw communism as beneficial. So leaders within the Baptist, Lutheran, Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, and other churches supported communism. American civil religion seems to be on the rise. American civil religion seems to center around free market capitalism rather than communism but exchanging Christ for either is still idolatrous and dangerous. We could be headed for a dangerous "revival" where churches that support American civil religion will grow and grow and the Bible will be quoted more and more in the public square but historic Christianity will not be tolerated.

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