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Wurmbrand Archive #1

The Holy Spirit Who Lives in Us

Richard Wurmbrand – 1948 ID Photographs


‘In prison we were terribly hungry. When I think back about the fourteen years of prison, I have this one great impression – ‘I am hungry.’ And even now this hunger has become a psychological fact. I am never really sated. Now I eat well, but during the night I would arise and say to my wife, ‘I am hungry.’ And she is hungry. She has eaten grass like cattle. She has worked at slave labours. Snakes were eaten there, cats, rats, whatever they could find.

In prison the hunger has been terrible. We have had times when we had one single slice of bread a week. Every Tuesday morning, we got a slice of bread. The rest of the week we had soup of dirty potato peels, cabbage with unwashed intestines, and other such dainties.

But when Christians with us had one slice of bread a week, they had one slice of bread plus the Holy Spirit. And when you have one slice of bread plus the Holy Spirit, then you are so rich that you can give away. And Christians with us at that time gave regularly tithes. Every tenth week they would renounce this one piece of bread and give it to some other prisoner who was weaker and who was sick – this was the rule.

But many gave every fifth week, every third week, every second week. They would give their piece of bread and they would show what it means really to have the Holy Spirit living in your heart. This divine love which unites the eternal Father with the eternal Son, this divine love shed in the heart of a mortal man.

In prison I was very sick. I was in the room for dying. I was abandoned by the doctors. There was no hope. And there was such a room in which you were put when you were near to agony. There you were kept two or three days until you died. You were taken out and other prisoners were put in there. I lived in this room for dying two-and-a-half years between life and death. I did not live; I did not die. After two-and-a-half years I came out living on my feet from this room.

In this room for dying, at a certain moment, we were twelve Christians. And a guard who was sympathetic to us smuggled in two pieces of sugar. That was such a wealth for us. So much time had passed since we had seen sugar. And now we had two pieces of sugar. And as often as somebody felt very, very bad, we offered him these two pieces of sugar. He never took them. He thought, ‘Perhaps my brother will feel worse than I tomorrow. Let me spare these two pieces of sugar for him.’

And these two pieces of sugar circulated around the room again and again. A long time they circulated. I also had them in my hands twice. Men died and they did not take this piece of sugar, leaving it for another one, for a brother. This means to have the Holy Spirit.

Whit Sunday is not an empty word. The descent of the Holy Spirit is not some legend of two thousand years ago – that some tongues of fire descended. The Holy Spirit is a real person. The third person in the Holy Trinity. It is the outpouring of eternal love between the eternal Father and the eternal Son. And it operates within the hearts of Christians today.’

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