SUNDAR SINGH: Most influential Indian Christian ever lived DR JOHN SUNG: Greatest Chinese evangelist of the 20th century.
Dr. Hwa Yung, Director of the Centre for the Study of Christianity in Asia at Trinity Theological College. (who taught me Christian Theology & Asian Theology in seminary and got us to read his Mangoes & Bananas? before it was published!) had some interesting observations in his article Sundar Singh, John Sung and future of Asian Christianity, some excerpts :
… the records revealed that both men placed central importance on the Bible and spent much time meditating on it. Do the Bible and prayer have the same place in our lives?
… both men lived lives of simplicity, holiness and sacrifice. … If the church is to impact Asia significantly today, we need to recover the same spirit of simplicity, holiness and sacrifice.
… Sundar Singh and John Sung read the Bible through Asian eyes, took the supernatural and the Holy Spirit seriously, and the rest followed.
… In their own ways, both John Sung and Sundar Singh worked towards Asian church independence and developing a genuinely indigenous Christian identity. Yet to this day, some 60 to 70 years later, we have yet to fully understand their concern.
… everywhere in Asia people are seeking to recover their indigenous cultural roots. Witness the resurgence of the traditional religions all over Asia today. If a Western Christianity was a hindrance to the advance of the Gospel in early 20th century, it is no less so today. If you think otherwise, you might want to ask why Buddhism has been growing faster than Christianity in the 1990s in Singapore — possibly the most westernised city in Asia.
… certainly we should not be constantly looking over our shoulders to Western Christianity for leadership and direction. Instead, we should look to the Holy Spirit and the Bible. Only this will make possible the emergence of a truly indigenous Christian identity, without which the churches in the non-Western world will never mature!