Adoniram Judson lived several years before America’s lucrative export became a lukewarm synthetic form of materialism called prosperity gospel. Adoniram was a selfless Calvinistic Baptist missionary from the United States who labored for almost forty years in Burma. At the age of 25, he was the first Protestant missionary sent from North America to preach in Burma. To summarise his missionary endeavors here is a concise post ….
Anarchic despotism, fierce war with Siam, enemy raids, constant rebellion, and no religious freedom (pg 85). What missionary would decide to go such a place? Although Burma(Myanmar) was essentially what we call a “closed country”, Adoniram Judson went in spite of an admonition from William Carey not to go (pg 85)…at age 24, and with a 23 year old wife! Ahead of Judson was immense loss, which many of us could scarcely imagine. But through it all he could say “If I had not felt certain that every additional trial was ordered by infinite love and mercy, I could not have survived my accumulated sufferings” (pg 87).
Judson experienced the death of many of his children, wives, and fellow missionaries. Judson even heard about the death of his father while Judson was in prison. Yet, by the grace of God, he was able to translate the Bible into the Burmese language and create a dictionary. But greatest of all, were the hundreds of converts. “Today there are about 3,700 congregations of Baptists in Myanmar two trace their origin to this man’s labors of love” (pg 106). This is what Judson gave his life for. Even if it cost him tremendously. One of his last sentences was, “How few there are who…die so hard” (pg 106)!
It was Adoniram Judson who once beckoned, “Let me beg you, not to rest contented with the commonplace religion that is now so prevalent.” And how we really need such a word to ring in our ears again.
“O slow of heart to believe and trust in the constant presence and overruling agency of our almighty Saviour!” ~ Adoniram Judson (1788- 1850)
Excerpt from Filling up the Afflictions of Christ via Against the Current.