This is the amazing story of a woman in China who was the leader of an assembly of more than seven hundred thousand believers, and the price she and her family paid for following God.
China's 'Enemy Number One'
The one who paid a high price as leader of an assembly of more than 700,000 believers.
The voice of the Chinese communist officer sounded out across the yard, before the large crowd which had gathered. "These people have sinned against the State", his voice shook with anger. "Now they will pay the price... the ultimate price."
The believers were arrested for an example, to warn the whole population about the futility and criminality of faith in God, or any other different belief. In the arrested group was Mrs. 'Moma' Kwang, a fervent evangelist. She watched as the guards cocked their guns. "Father, forgive them," she prayed, quoting the words of Jesus when he was confronted with death on the cross, "for they know not what they do."
"Ready, Aim... fire!"
The crack of the gunshots rang out across the yard as the soldiers responded to their orders and fired on the men and women before them. Immediately, several fell to the ground like nine-pins, while others were left, still standing beside the dead. Mrs. Kwang was one of the survivors. The communist leader turned to those who had not yet been shot, together with the many spectators. "If you want to believe in Jesus Christ, you will suffer the same death," he warned in an arrogant tone, completely untouched by the sight of the dead bodies at his feet. After that, he called his men and marched proudly off the yard. Mrs. Kwang and the other survivors went slowly back to the relieved crowd.
Far from losing her courage from this incident five years previous, Mrs. Kwang and other fearless believers like her, went on to preach the WORD OF GOD shortly afterwards. Eventually, Mrs. Kwang led more than 300 assemblies in her province, with over 700,000 believers praying in them.
This led to her being named China's 'Enemy number one'.
But the price for Mrs. Kwang was high, as I discovered when I met her and her family, after their inexplicable escape from China. The first tragedy occured when her father died after a prison warden smashed a bottle over his head. He had been arrested with many other Christians from the surrounding area.
Later on, another tragedy occured. This was described by Mrs. Kwang's son, Daniel: "One evening the Red Guards came into our house and took everything we had.
They did not even leave one piece of furniture. When they stopped, the house was empty. The guards forced us all to stand on a bench and deny Jesus Christ. When we refused, they became really angry and hit us with sticks. Afterwards, they brought us to an open square and assembled a large crowd of people around us. The Red Guards took my father and my mother and beat them up. Then they bound them with a thick rope on a bracket at 45° and beat them on the back with heavy shoes with sharp spikes." Daniel paused for a moment before continuing.
"The worst moment was when one of the officers took a pair of scissors and ran towards my parents. My oldest brother was terrified. He thought they would stab my father's and mother's eyes out. He was so shocked that he began to scream, but he stopped when he saw what the guards wanted to do. They wanted to cut my mother's and my father's hair to embarrass them in front of the whole city."
Even after this, Mr. and Mrs. Kwang refused to say the words the fanatical Red Guards demanded to hear - "We deny Jesus Christ." They preferred to die rather than to do this. "OK Kwang, you go into a labour camp and then we will see how long you can withstand." This was said to my father by an elderly officer. "Even if I die, I will not deny Jesus Christ," said my father. He was roughly transported to an infamous camp where people died daily due to ill treatment.
Peter Kwang, Daniel's older brother, was still in shock when he saw the sorrow on his mother's face, as she was forced to watch her husband being taken away. At the same time, however, he realised that something strange was happening in his own body. By the time they arrived home he knew it was dangerous. A number of veins had burst and he was beginning to bleed to death. Nevertheless, the 12 year old boy walked bravely on to support his mother in her agony. As he did not want to worry her any further, he withdrew into a dark corner of the house and did not tell anybody of his haemorrhage. After several hours he knew that it would be too dangerous to hide any longer from his mother. He called for her and when she grasped the situation she was close to despair.
Bent over the boy, she prayed to God to stop the bleeding and it stopped immediately. Knowing that his condition was critical, she bathed him lovingly and put him to bed for the night. Then she went into another room and began to pray: "Father, you know that I can't take any more. My husband has been taken from me. Please do not allow my son to die. It would break me."
But nevertheless, she added with great effort, "If it is your will God, I will obey." While she was crying and praying she felt the sure presence of the Lord beside her, comforting her. But then came His answer: "Your son has endured too much suffering already. Now it's time to take him home. He has suffered enough. He is pure." Peter Kwang died within 24 hours. But that was not the end. Three times Mrs. Kwang was put into prison because of her faith. The last sentence was life. But now she is free. That is yet another story. The Kwang family know the price of being a believer in China. It costs everything!!
Translated from the German: "'Moma' Kwang"
Source: 'Redemption Tidings'