Rules of Holy Living

Adoniram Judson

Adoniram Judson

American Baptist missionary, lexicographer, and Bible translator to Burma. Born in Massachusetts in 1788. Helped form the American Baptist Missionary Union. In 1834 completed a translation of the whole Bible into the Burmese language. During the Anglo-Burmese War, he spent twenty-one months in prison. From 1845-1847, after thirty-four years in Burma, he took his only furlough to his native land. Returning to Burma, he spent his remaining years working on his English-Burmese dictionary. He died in 1850 and was buried at sea.

The rules of living which follow are copied from a paper in the handwriting of Dr. Judson. These rules illustrate the earnestness with which he strove after personal holiness, whilst engrossed with the labors of his missionary calling. He well knew that no external services could purify the heart; that his work could be done in no other way than by practically subjecting the whole soul to the commandments of Christ.

Rules of Holy Living

These rules were adopted on Sunday April 4, 1819, the era of commencing public ministrations among the Burmans; revised and readopted on Saturday, December 9, 1820, and on Wednesday, April 25, 1821,

1. Be diligent in secret prayer, every morning and evening.

2. Never spend a moment in idleness.

3. Restrain natural appetites within the bounds of¬†temperance and purity. “Keep thyself pure.”

4. Suppress every emotion of anger and ill will.

5. Undertake nothing from motives of ambiton, or love of fame.

6. Never do that which, at the moment, appears to be displeasing to God.

7. Seek opportunities of making some sacrifice for the good of others, especially of believers, provided the sacrifice is not inconsistent with some duty.

8. Endeavor to rejoice in every loss and suffering incurred for Christ’s sake and the gospel’s, remembering that though, like death, they are not to be willfully incurred, yet like death, they are great gain.

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