Today in Christian History – May 2 (2020)

1982 – Lin Xiangao (Samuel Lamb) is arrested in Guangzhou for holding house church services. He had already served two sentences in prison for resisting Chinese laws against giving religious instruction to the young and refusal to submit to the government-run Three Self Patriotic Church.

Over the course of Lamb’s life, he was imprisoned a few times because he did not follow Chinese government rules concerning religion. Lamb, along with Wang Ming-Dao, refused to submit to the state-run church, known as the Three-Self Patriotic Movement (TSPM). Like other house church leaders, Lamb refused to join the TSPM because of the limitations placed by government on the member congregations. The restrictions include: no preaching from the Book of Revelation, discouragement from preaching on the Second Coming of Christ, and a prohibition on evangelizing to minors (children’s Sunday School). In all these cases, Lamb believed that obedience to God supersedes the command in Romans 13 which requires Christians to obey their governments, and his belief is thought to conform with the teaching in the Bible (e.g. Acts of the Apostles 5).

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