Sunday, July 02, 2006

The higher allegiance (Ivan Moiseyev)

The son of Protestant peasant farmers, Ivan “Vanya” Moiseyev entered the army at eighteen to perform two years of required military training and service. Because he spoke openly of God, which was forbidden in the atheistic regime, Vanya was persecuted by his military supervisors.
Many times, he was challenged by his barracks to prove that God exists. The test was that God obtain leave for a certain sergeant. Leaves were hard to get. After asking God if he should accept the challenge, Vanya agreed. All night, he sat up with the sergeant explaining the things that he would need to know when he became a Christian. The next day, an authority from another town called and ordered the leave. The sergeant became a Christian and so did other men.
Once, after a discussion about God, Vanya was made to stand in the street throughout the whole night wearing their summer uniform.. The temperature at that time was thirteen degrees below zero. He obeyed the order and stood at the street the whole night, remaining faithful to God. Miraculously, he could see his officers and move his body despite the terrible cold. All throughout the ordeal, Vanya only prayed for his persecutors. For the next twelve nights, Ivan continued to stand in the street outside his barracks. Miraculously, he did not freeze, nor did he beg for mercy. Ivan continued to speak about his faith to his comrades and officers.
Soldiers around him were converted, impressed by his ardent faith. His commanders continued to interrogate him, trying to get him to deny Jesus. They put him in refrigerated cells. They clothed him in a special rubber suit, into which they pumped air until his chest was so compressed he scarcely could breath.
In his interrogation, Vanya testified, “I have one higher allegfiance, and that is to Jesus Christ. He has given me certain orders, and these I cannot disobey.”
At the age of 20, Ivan knew that the communists would kill him. On July 11, 1972, he wrote his parents, “You will not see me anymore.” He then described a vision of angels and heaven which God had sent to strengthen him for the last trial. A few days later, a coffin arrived at his parents' home, welded shut. Vanya's mother insisted it be opened. A brother, who belonged to the Communist party resisted, but the rest of the family prevailed. Vanya was barely recognizable. Witnesses, Christian and non-Christian alike, signed a statement which declared that his chest had been burned. His face and body were lumped and bruised. Heel marks marred his body. His heart was punctured in six places. Vanya had been beaten and stabbed six times on the chest, and then drowned.
His family did not know about all the things which happened to Vanya, but his letters and the testimonies of the other witnesses completed the puzzle and made the story of Vanya known.
Colonel Malsin, his commander, said, “Moiseyev died with difficulty. He fought with death, but he died as a Christian.”

12 Comments:

Blogger David M Littlechild said...

I have read this testimony of Vanya's life, written after his death by Myrna Grant and would say that my spirit witnesses to the authenticity of the writings. I have no desire to malign the Russian state or its people but I do want to say that I give thanks and glory to God for His grace and mercy, His power and might manifested through this young man's life - the Lord says, "To him who overcomes, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God." - 'I know you will enjoy the celestial fruit Vanya!'

5:41 AM  
Blogger Janae said...

Thanks for this post. I've been looking for Vanya's story for decades. I started singing this song about Vanya to all my kids as soon as they were born.

We're all looking forward to seeing Vanya someday!

4:54 PM  
Blogger moldova said...

I can confirm the veracity of this testimony through personal evidence and family linkage.

After Vanya's death, the word about his torture was spread in the circle of believers throughout the USSR, and the news even reached the U.S. The US president Jimmy Carter asked the general Secretary of the Communist Party, Leonid Brezhnev, to investigate the case and the case was assigned to Moldova, Vanya s birthplace (where I am from.) My grandfather, who was an equivalent of attorney general, was assigned the case.

My grandfather's job was to show the world that a fair investigation could allegedly take place in the Soviet Union, but in fact, his job was to find the tape recording and intimidate the church. He confiscated much of the biblical literature, but he was amazed at how the members of Vanya's church would not repudiate their faith but stood very firm on their belief. My grandfather let my father read the entire case. Two years ago my father also received access to the secret KGB archives, which only confirmed the murder.

However, God continues to touch people's lives via Vanya's devoted life to Him. My father was saved in the same church Vanya was the member of (in Tiraspol.) Subsequently, my entire family came to Christ.

In May 2007 a group of IWU students came with me to Moldova and heard the testimony from Vanya's brother - Volodyia. We also had the privilege to meet Vanya's parents and see his grave.

One of the American students, Ben Hubbard, has met with Myrna Grant (the author of the book Vanya) and discussed the possibility of creating a movie, telling the world about Vanya's story. Everything is in God's hands. If you would like any pictures of Vanya/his brother/his parents/his house, please let me know. Ben Hubbard, an artist, has also painted some portraits from Vanya's story.

Actually, tomorrow I am going to share Vanya's story with a group of co-workers.

Praise the Lord for his faithful servant!

I encourage you to read Vanya's story. You will certainly be touched deeply!

God bless you,

Yuri

5:57 PM  
Blogger HOR65L said...

Vanya's Story left a deep impression in my soul-sometime near 1988. My heart was one with Soviet believers. It touched me so strongly that I went to Latvia in 2002 and married my wife a believer since the curtain fell. Who of us in our 50s would believe it was possible. Jesus is Lord. Check out-the venus project and zietgeist. Are you rapture ready.
William Kooy

6:59 AM  
Blogger AnArKi said...

This is one book which ripped my heart and inspired to renew my faith in Jesus.Vanya's life is a must read for all Christians.He died as a martyr for Christ.He faced extreme persecution for his faith and belief.

His life proves about God's faithfulness to His own in spite of suffering, persecution and death.

4:38 PM  
Blogger Pamela Schuffert said...

I have worked with persecuted Christians under communism for many years now. I met one of the pastors of Moiseyev while studying Russian at Slavic Gospel Association in 1979-1980.This is typical of what Christians can expect under communism or the NEW WORLD ORDER in America someday. Go to my blog to read more about this.www.AmericanHolocaustcoming.blogspot.com
-Pamela Schuffert

12:09 PM  
Blogger ServantOfChrist said...

Oh LORD, my GOD - will you please help me stand as such a testimony, glorifying your name, even through my mortal body.

1:11 PM  
Blogger ServantOfChrist said...

Oh LORD, my GOD - will you please help me stand as such a testimony, glorifying your name, even through my mortal body.

1:15 PM  
Blogger jeni said...

i am amazed hearing about vanya . i have never heard of any youngster like vanya . God has made him a great example for young people like me to stand firmly for God . let us dedicate ourselves totally to do God's will ,whatever be the trials and circumstances .
I WOULD WISH TO GET THE PICTURES OF VANYA AND HIS FAMILY . I WISH SOMEONE COULD SEND ME .
My mail id is JEvangeline.7@gmail.com

4:28 AM  
Blogger jeni said...

i am amazed hearing about vanya . i have never heard of any youngster like vanya . God has made him a great example for young people like me to stand firmly for God . let us dedicate ourselves totally to do God's will ,whatever be the trials and circumstances .
I WOULD WISH TO GET THE PICTURES OF VANYA AND HIS FAMILY . I WISH SOMEONE COULD SEND ME .
My mail id is JEvangeline.7@gmail.com

4:28 AM  
Blogger Kimberly Justice said...

I have recently read Ivan's (Vanya's) story in the book "Live like a Jesus Freak" by dc talk. It really inspired me....I have never heard a story so powerful and amazing like this that occured so close to my lifetime. Ivan stood his ground in a way I could never imagine doing myself,he even sacrificed his own life for the glory of God. This young man is truly a wonderful role model for all believers in Christ! Can't wait to worship with you in heaven Ivan!

8:19 AM  
Blogger Kimberly Justice said...

I have recently read Ivan's (Vanya's) story in the book "Live like a Jesus Freak" by dc talk. It really inspired me....I have never heard a story so powerful and amazing like this that occured so close to my lifetime. Ivan stood his ground in a way I could never imagine doing myself,he even sacrificed his own life for the glory of God. This young man is truly a wonderful role model for all believers in Christ! Can't wait to worship with you in heaven Ivan!

8:20 AM  

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