Watchman Nee was arrested for his faith in Christ in 1952, and he spent the rest of his life in prison. He died in his jail cell on May 30, 1972. When his niece came to collect his few possessions, she was given a scrap of paper that a guard had found by his bed. On it was written his life’s testimony:
“Christ is the Son of God who died for the redemption of sinners and was resurrected after three days. This is the greatest truth in the universe. I die because of my belief in Christ—Watchman Nee.”
Tradition says that the apostle Paul also was martyred for his faith in Christ. In a letter written shortly before his death, Paul exhorted his readers: “Remember that Jesus Christ, of the seed of David, was raised from the dead according to my gospel, for which I suffer trouble . . . ; but the Word of God is not chained” (2 Tim. 2:8-9).
We may not be called upon to be martyred as witnesses to the reality of Christ—as millions of His followers through the centuries have been—but we are all called to be a living testament of Jesus’ work on our behalf. No matter the outcome, from a heart of gratitude for God’s gracious gift we can tell others what Jesus has done for us.
His grace in us to magnify;
His Word of life to all make known—
Be this our work, and this alone. —Whittle