I was a Sikh. Now I follow Christ”

 I grew up in a Sikh family and was baptised into the Khalsa as a young boy. I was very proud to be Sikh. As I got older, I tried very hard to be a good Sikh, but I never felt that I was good enough…  Then one of my former teachers told me, ‘You can never be good enough to earn salvation. But Jesus was perfect, and he gave his life as a sacrifice to pay the penalty for all your bad deeds. All you have to do is trust in him.’

 I was angry after hearing this, but it stuck in my mind. I sought out a Christian pastor and began debating with him. One day he had me read Revelation 3:20: ‘Listen, I stand at the door and knock!’ That night I felt like Jesus was knocking on the door of my heart. I asked him to come in, and he changed my life. I hope many more Sikhs will come to know Jesus as their Saviour.[1]

 

Background

Christianity is the largest religion in the world with over 2 billion adherents, while Sikhism is the fifth largest with 30 million believers. Sikhism is based on the teachings of the ten Gurus contained in ‘Guru Granth Sahib’. Sikhs are required to follow a very strict code regarding the five necessary items to be worn at all times. Their pursuit is forever to strive for salvation through balancing work, worship and charity, [2] while Christians attain salvation by faith in Jesus. Punjab in India is the home state of the Sikhs and the only state where they are in the majority. Their famed Golden Temple is in Amritsar.[3]

 

Central beliefs compared to Christianity

Focus of the religion

Christianity: God the Father, Jesus Christ His Son, the Holy Spirit.

Sikhism: Their primary focus is Buddha.

 

Salvation

Christianity: Through the Cross, death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Sikhism: They have to worship God, do good deeds in the name of God and perform service to the community. Fight 5 evils (5 sins) – greed, ego, attachment, anger and lust.

 

View of Jesus

Christianity: The Son Of God.

Sikhism: Jesus is seen as a “saint”. Sikhs do not believe that Jesus is God, because Sikhism teaches that God is neither born, nor dead. Jesus was born and lived a human life; therefore, he cannot be God.

 

Life after death

Christianity: Eternity in Heaven or Hell.
Sikhism: A constant cycle of reincarnation until enlightenment is reached. Sikhs believe that there are 8,4 million forms of life and that many souls have to travel though a number of these before they can reach Waheguru (God). The goal is to merge with God.

 

Concept of heaven and hell

Christianity: Christians believe that God created human beings to live with Him eternally. The resurrection of all people; the judgment, then eternal life in heaven or hell. Heaven is God’s abode and Jesus Christ is the only way to heaven. People who reject God will be judged and be separated from Him forever.

Sikhism: It is a Sikh’s goal to end his own suffering and join God. Mainstream Sikhism believes that Hell is the cycle of rebirth over and over again (8.4 million lives – different life forms).

 

Five Symbols important to Sikhs
  1. Uncut hair that signifies devotion. Sikh men cover their uncut hair with a turban.
  2. A wooden comb that symbolises cleanliness.
  3. An iron or steel band worn on the wrist, symbolising that there is no beginning or end to reality and that the Sikh is linked to the Guru.
  4. A sword that symbolises the Sikh’s fight for justice.
  5. Short pants symbolise chastity and a self-disciplined lifestyle.

 

How to pray for Sikhs[4]
  1. Baptism for Sikhs is a way to “put on” their new role in the Khalsa (Sikh community). Pray for them to be baptised into Christ and put on Christ like a garment (Galatians 3:27). Christ desires to clothe Sikhs in his righteousness, not their own.
  2. Pray that Sikhs will understand the truth that no person can ever earn God’s grace (Ephesians 2:8–9).
  3. Pray for Sikhs living in the West to encounter Christian friends willing to share Christ with them.
  4. Pray for the families of Sikh background believers who still do not know Jesus, that they will see the difference he makes in the life of their family member and also come to follow Christ.
  5. Pray that God would give you an opportunity to meet a Sikh and boldly share the testimony behind your own salvation and baptism.

Sources:
[1] http://www.globalprn.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Sikh-5-Day-Prayer-Guide-V2.pdf
[2] http://www.differencebetween.net/miscellaneous/difference-between-sikhism-and-christianity/
[3] https://operationworld.org/prayer-calendar/07-02/
[4] http://www.globalprn.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Sikh-5-Day-Prayer-Guide-V2.pdf
https://www.prayercast.com/sikhism.html

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