My Response To An Angry Sikh
Several days ago I recieved a comment by an angry Sikh who was mad about my article about Sikhism and my temple experience in Los Angeles with a group of them there. The person went by the name “onlypath” and wrote me an angry leter accusing Christianity and my intentions of why I visited a Sikh Gurdwara. His letter is quoted and my response is underneath in italics. Here it is:
*Yes he wrote that to me, and I have no clue what the heck he was trying to do.
How “Christian” of you to go to a Sikh Gurdwara accept their hospitality, accept their love and friendship, accept their trust in you, spend the night there, eat their food and make polite chat with them but all the time your mind was false, you intensions we dishonorable and your actions were deceitful. So you believe we are in a “Satanic” grasp and we are a false religion, I say that a religion is false that has to use underhand tactics and deceitful acts to try to draw in people.”
First of all, nothing we did in my class was dishonorable or deceitful. My professor arranged a meeting with the open minded Sikhs who enjoyed having us over. Everyone knew we were evangelical Christians and were not going to convert to Sikhism. The point was for us to learn about a culture and religion that was different from our own. The Sikhs also got to learn from us as well, and they enjoyed giving us hospitality! Isn’t it part of your religion that you MUST give a traveler or anyone who passes through a Gurdwara hospitality? From my understanding no matter what, Sikhs are to give food and shelter to people. In this case we were not just passing by but were INVITED by the chief of the temple to sleep over night in their Hollywood Gurdwara and share meals and have great discussions. They used this for an opportunity to teach us their religion and witness their god to us. They had every chance to convert us if we would believe. When we showed up all we did was ask questions in a non-judgmental way and the leaders of the temple answered them to the best of their ability. None us of presented the gospel of Christ or even tried to convert anyone. All we did was listen. Nothing was deceitful and you should be ashamed for saying such a thing because it will only keep open minded individuals from experiencing your religion. In no way did we draw any Sikh into our religion at all. If anything the students in my class could have been drawn to yours.
The Sikhs at both temple locations gave us all kinds of respect and were extremely nice to us. I have nothing but the utmost respect for these Sikhs and enjoyed our conversations.
“Tell me, you believe in the bible, yet this form was created by politicians at the council Nicea two hundred years after the death of Jesus. There is theNew Worldedition, the King James edition, there is a feminine edition, it has been manipulated to much where is the truth ? Where is the original? You read a translated version anyway what about lost-in-translation? Why was the gospels of Mary, Judas and others left out ? You do not even follow the faith of Jesus, for Jesus said that the soul comes from God and will ultimately return to God. You follow the religion as set out bySt Paulwhich is wholly different to what Jesus preached, so my friend who is following a false religion?”
Sorry, but God’s Word was not created 200 years after Jesus. Maybe there was the council of Nicea that RE-AFFIRMED the Bible as complete which already existed before that council, but I assure you nothing was left out of the Bible. The gospels of Judas and Mary were never even allowed in the Bible to begin with. They teach wholly contradictory things that the Bible does not. For more information please see my page called “Doctrinal Statement on Scripture” so you can better understand what constitutes as the Bible and why. Also, the Bible first began milleniums ago and was written down and more books were added as God revealed His teachings up until it was completed near 70AD. The latest biblical Scripture was written about 650 years before Islam, which was written hundreds of years before the Sikh collection of books you worship.
Do Sikhs read a translated version of the Guru Granth Sahib Ji? How many times has it been translated into other languages, especially English so Americans can understand it? Is that a sin? Also, from my understanding Sikhs burn old copies of the Guru that are damaged, old and unusable, and more. So where are your ancient manuscripts to prove that your Guru has been translated correctly without any mistakes? How old is the oldest manuscript you have transcribed into your book? How does it differ from other religions that possibly used some of the same texts? The truth is, there is not enough archeological evidence to suggest your book was transcribed corretly without any mistakes. On the other hand, there is a multitude of archeological evidence that suggests the Bible has been written perfectly without any mistakes. We have thousands of New Testament copies from ancient times not more than 100 years after Christ’s death. How old is the oldest Guru Granth Sahib Ji? Oh wait, you probably burnt it. There is no evidence. Also, we have found the Dead Sea Scrolls that prove the Old Testament has been transcribed correctly. Research this. So your claim that the Bible has mistakes in its translation is rediculus.
On the topic of different translations of the Bible, some are heretical and wrong, but most are not. Even so, we still have ancient texts to look back on to know the truth. We can tell the difference between the newly recent heretical bibles and the true Bibles. Most English translations are just different modern language translations from the Old English language we don’t speak anymore. But all of the English translations (minus a select few heretical versions: feminine translation, the Message, New World Translation, Lamsa etc.) say the same thing! It’s just different ways to say the same thing in English.
What part of the Bible are you referring to where Jesus said, “The soul comes from God and will ultimately return to God?” I am not sure what Bible you were reading. The soul was CREATED by God and when we die we will return to God and be judged (Hebrews 9:27). But that is not to say our souls join with God. That is not in the Bible, but comes from Sikhism.
Also, where did you get the idea that Paul teaches something else from Jesus? Can you explain where in the letters of Paul he contradicted Jesus and was teaching another way? Because if you actually read the Bible you would see that Paul actually teaches the same thing as Jesus Christ.
Another issue about the translation of the Guru Granth is that the hymns inside the book are written in several different languages. Or they originally were. The languages are Persian, Marathi, Medieval Prakrit, Hindi, Marathi, Multani, Old Punjab, and a lot of other local dialects. Also there are Sanskrit and Arabic portions. This causes your holy book to be extremely difficult to translate. If anyone has translation errors it must be your book and not the Bible. The Christian Bible was written simply in 3 languages: Hebrew (practically the entire Old testament), Aramaic (in very small portions), and Koine Greek (Entire New Testament). Plus you burned your old copies.
“God is all loving, all forgiving and all embracing, He created everything and nothing opposes Him. We are separated from Him due to our own actions, that is what has put a distance between us and Him. To get to Him we need to love Him as a father , and Him alone, not a three way tie of father, son and ghost, but HIM alone for there is no one else. He resides in us all and out of us all, He is unfathomable and we will merge into Him with His grace. There is no spirituality in Christianity, you eat everything, drink everything and make merry and then expect to be saved by Jesus. Well, Jesus is looking down on you and he does not like what he sees as a cult built up around him, he had tried to show you the way to God but instead you have made him your God.”
I agree that God is all loving, all forgiving and all embracing. God loves and gives grace to His people. But on the other hand God is full of justice and punishes evil. Do you believe that God brings justice? Do you believe in justice? Didn’t Sikhs constantly fight the Muslims in India with mortal combat to free the land from Islamic persecution? Sikhs even have their own martial arts as a part of their religion. Sikhs carry a knife everywhere they go as part of their faith. It is a necessity to carry it. The symbol of your religion is a weapon (the Gatka). To me, that screams, “JUSTICE SHOULD BE SERVED! AND WE WILL FIGHT FOR IT!” Sikhs believe in justice and even killing enemies to protect their people. Sikhs are some of the greatest soldiers and fought in many wars, even the British hired them as military units in their colonies. Well, you can be assured that God is full of justice and brings wrath on evil. The problem is that Sikh’s don’t believe in evil but believe in simply “bad things” which are not evil just different. Sikhs contradict their own teachings that God is all loving and evil does not exist when they believe in fighting to kill enemies who oppose them.
When you say we are separated from God due to our own actions, that is true. The problem is that you have a misunderstanding and don’t call the actions sin. You just call them “not the best” behavior. Evil is the reason humans are rejected by God and separated. If Sikh’s don’t believe in evil and actually think if it does exist (which you don’t call sin or evil but “bad things”) then God created it; so then there is a problem with your logic. The Sikh God tolerates evil or “bad behavior” and even creates it. The Christian God is 100% holy and pure without evil. The God of the Bible does not create evil and also distinguishes between sin and righteousness. Along with God’s justice this sin WILL be punished. This is why Hell exists. Such horrible evil which is against God who is eternal deserves an equally holy and eternal punishment. When you commit a crime a human judge will judge you according to the law. Well likewise, God will judge you according to His Eternal Law. Sin must be punished with bloodshed. The great news that gives us hope is that Jesus Christ died on a cross 2,000 years ago and took the punishment for our sins in death, and killed sin for Christians in the flesh of His own body. Now that is true love! Now we have a way to be given righteousness. It is a gift and not something that can be earned.
Sikh’s on the other hand believe that you must EARN righteousness and be good, that humans can be good. Well the Bible in Romans 3 says, “NO ONE IS GOOD! NOT EVEN ONE!” Yet, Sikhs try tirelessly with no gain trying to be righteous. They have so many rules and laws: can’t cut your hair, must eat certain foods, cannot judge, must go to Gurdwara and worship Guru, put the book to bed and wake it up each morning, wear a turban, carry a knife, practice meditation, cover your hair with a turban or cloth when reading the Guru, must not eat meat or drink alcohol, and many others! What is interesting about this is that Sikhism was created in the 15th century to the fight legalism of Hindu rituals and Islam fundamentalism. Yet they just took out a lot legalism and replaced them with their own.
You have said that we can only get to God by His grace, yet everything Sikhs believe is not grace, but simply something earned. Grace is not something you earn, grace is grace, not earnable and is a free gift. For that is what the word grace means! Paying and working hard to earn favor is nothing even close to grace. And as a human you have to be honest with yourself that you are not a perfect person and are full of sins. How many times have you lied? Lusted after a woman? Hated someone? Stolen something? You cannot possibly earn holiness. Also, you believe in reincarnation and karma. How can you do enough good for thousands of lifetimes of sin and pay for them to earn heaven? It is impossible! How many people have obtained god? 11 Gurus? Out of the entire history? Also, every other race is not a Sikh nor are they Punjabi and did not spend their life following Sikhism so what hope do they have? They must wait and HOPE to be reincarnated as an Indian Sikh so they can get to God? This is racism my friend.
In addition, you have a misunderstanding of the nature of the triune God. The Bible explains that God is ONE BEING, but exists in three distinct persons. This is not 3 gods, but ONE GOD. Jesus Christ is fully 100% God so we worship Him just as the Father and Holy Spirit are both 100% God. God is one in Christianity so research this.
Now about how we drink everything and eat everything. What you are describing is self-righteousness. You boast in your accomplishments and the way you follow rules and judge everyone else who does not follow. You act as if you are perfect and good when deep inside you know if reincarnation is true you won’t obtain it. You are imperfect and a sinner. You are not holy or righteous and need a Savior. Jesus Christ taught that He is the Savior and we must repent and admit our guilt and we will be given grace freely and enter heaven. Then we are given a life change that desires to obey God. We are not God and do not merge with God. We simply get to be with God in heaven. God created everything, but everything is not God; it is separate. Your problem is a misunderstanding of who God is and what He is. You cannot become God!
“Guru Granth Sahib Ji is the living word of God, the word has been revealed to the Sikhs and as such we give it the utmost respect. Can you say the same about the bible? I remember at school the kids used to keep the bible in their desks, along with their training shoes and games kit, is this the sort of respect you have for your , allegedly, word of God? There is no Buddha teaching or Baghvand teachings in Guru Granth Sahib Ji only the compositions as revealed to those enlightened souls who God bestowed such blessing. Every shabad/hymn or composition in the Guru Granth Sahib Ji is a revelation about God and how to unite with Him. There is no vengeful God here, no jealous God here, no wrathful God here, just the true God, God of all , God of love , please I implore you, give up your ways, they will not get you anywhere, you follow Jesus but he can only get you to the level which he attained, that of heaven, but heaven is quite a low level and there is a greater journey then that to merge with the Almighty. You heaven is only temporary I am afraid, so please join with me.”
You give your holy book so much respect that you wave a feather over it, put it to bed and wake it up each morning. You worship paper and binding on a fancy large book. How can that be God? Also, if God is everything and we merge with God how is that book special? What kind of god sleeps and has to rest? And can only sleep or rest by humans giving effort to sing it to sleep, carry it and put it in a bed, and cover it with sheets! The Christian God is omniscient, omnipresent, and omnipotent. He does not sleep nor does He need to rest. He knows all things, all the time, eternally. The Christian God of the Bible is more powerful that your god of the Guru Granth.
Christians do not worship pages in a book, or any physical book as God. The Bible is simply a text we use to study about God who is completely separate from material things. He created everything. Your self-righteous protection of a material book, whom you also burn if they get old, keeps you from understanding the true nature of God. You have limited God to pages and script bound together. It is awfully silly. I wonder why you as a Sikh went to a Christian school.
You said there is no Buddha teachings or Bhagavad gita teachings in your book. Well aren’t some of your hymns Sanskrit or Hindi? Don’t you teach reincarnation and karma? Those religions do too. Also, the chief of the temple told me some of the parts of the Guru contain a few Hindu and Buddhist writings as well as some Islamic ones. If he is wrong you should inform him.
Don’t Sikhs believe that the cycle of reincarnation is infinite and that when you do get to God it will eventually start over again anyway? Jesus Christ was God and we cannot become God, or on His level of perfection. Christ gives us the way to God beause He is God and we are forgiven for our sins through repentance and faith. This is the only way. The true God is a God that is just, the Sikh god is not just and allows sinful humans to earn merit and be with him. Also, Sikhs are supposed to be non-judgmental, but all you did was judge me and tell me how bad and nasty I was.
Nothing that happened in the Sikh temple was deceitful or underhanded. It was a great experience and I enjoyed sleeping there and eating the wonderful vegetarian food. The point is, I am true to my faith that says sinners will go to hell. All other religions are not true and keep people dead in their sins and they will go to hell. Satan creates false religions to keep humans in bondage away from God. If you are open minded you should accept my beliefs and let it go. In America we have freedom of religion, not freedom from religious discussions. You should not care that much about criticism of your faith since you believe in reincarnation anyway. There is no hell and we all get billions of chances to be reincarnated and do it right according to you. There is also no evil, correct? So then it should not matter if I say your religion is Satanic. God will just reincarnate me as something low and I can work my way up. The problem is that my original article about my Gurdwara experience convicted you and upset you. This is because the truth is only found through the Bible and the loving God of the universe who gives REAL GRACE, not acceptance of human merit, also is a God of justice because He is holy. So I am sorry, I cannot join with you.
The point is that I hope you will repent of your sins and know the true God who administers justice and also shows infinite love to His children (those who believe) who is found only in the Bible. I have nothing but love for Siks and I hope all Sikhs come to saving grace in Jesus Christ the Lord. Christianity is not about being better than Sikhs, and I cannot force you to believe in my God, but only through the Holy Spirit can you be convicted of your sins and repent.