(This is the biography of a great servant of God who was mightily used in India for sharing gospel and doing Missionary work)
Dr.Theodore Williams was born on 24th February 1935 in the town of Nazareth in Tutucorin District of TamilNadu,India.His grandfather was a Anglican Priest and His father was a School teacher.He was the eldest of his four siblings.Being born in a strict christian family He attended church services,Sunday school in time and was made to memorize short-prayers,Bible verses and Confessing the Sermon points in Home..
He finished his SSLC honours at the age of 14..since his age was too premature for college,He started learning type-writing,book-keeping and Hindi too..All these things helped him in the later stage of His ministry.Then he pursued his Inter-mediate in Loyola college .During his college he had a deep affinity towards Dravidian politics and also wrote stories in a Tamil monthly magazine .After completing his Inter-mediate ,He earned a Degree in Statistics from Madras University.Though he had the chance and talent to write Civil Service examinations ,yet he started to lose interest in it..Slowly disorderness started creeping in his life and his craze over his Political Heroes started diminishing when he came to know more secrets about their Personal lives..
In 1953,He went to a Revival meeting in Immanuel Methodist Church ,Chennai for the sake of listening and relishing Music and Songs..But,God touched him through that meeting and He surrendered himself to LORD…Inspite of his surrender,He wasn’t completely transformed yet..Through the teachings of Bro.Bhaktha Singh,LORD started speaking with him more and He was feeling a transformation in his life..Slowly ,He was getting interest in Worship and he went on to participate in Methodist Choir.
The climax came when He saw his pastor,Rev.Albert Shaneck(who believed in Liberal theology) surrendered himself completely at a Alter-call given in a Baptist Missionary meeting..When ,Theodore williams saw how his pastor,inspite of being a Reverend din’t shy or hesitate to go towards the altar in surrendering himself completely for Christ,He was Completely Shaken…After a serious of events and experiences,on April 28,1954 He completely surrenderd his Heart and life for Jesus Christ..From then His life was totally changed and new desires for Christ started growing in Him..He then started to serve as a sunday school teacher in Immanuel methodist Church..
After realizing his call of ministry,He decided to pursue Theological education against the Will of His parents..He left his home for studying Theology in South India Bible Institude(SIBI),Bangarpet,Karnataka..The belongings he had was only 3 sets of dress,1 suitcase box and 1 Bedsheet..His parents threatened that the principal of the college will be sued to Court if they admit their son(Theodore Williams)..But,He never gave in to those threats,rather was Strong in his vision and calling..However oppositions he faced ,He remembered the promise verse God gave to him,”for them that honour me I will honour,“(1 Samuel 2:30)…
To manage the expenses of his studies,He worked part time by cleaning wash-rooms,getting groceries for Hostel..Knowing all these sufferings still His parents never came forward to help him.But God was wonderfully helping him.There came a time when a quarrel arose in the seminary.The domination of malayalees was much in the college and Theodore was unhappy with their norms and habits.At that time God spoke to him in a different way,”If you cannot love and be in harmony with them in this Earth,How can you live with them in Heaven?”.. At that time the Holy spirit filled him with his love to understand and love others…He learnt to trust completely in God,Be prepared to do anything for God and be in harmony with every one during his Bible college days.
After completing his 2 year diploma,he then finished his Bachelors of Doctorate in Serampore university..God then gave him a job to serve as a preacher in the Immanuel Methodist Church.Out of the income he earned,he sent half to his parents(who never came forward to help him in his difficult times) This showed the love and respect he had for his parents..After serving the gospel of God in numerous occasions ,he gained many spiritual friends. In 1959,He and his other friends (Sam kamalesan,P.Samuel,Fred David) formed “Friends Missionary Prayer Band“(FMPB) which is one of the leading Missionary organization in India today..He served as the first president of the organization .He then became a part of Evangelical Fellowship of India(EFI) and finally in 1965 He started Indian Evangelical Mission(IEM) .After receiving the guidance of holy spirit,He then started to concentrate on the mission work of IEM alone from then and spent most of his remaining life time for IEM..He set the visions of his IEM ministry as 1.Spreading Gospel 2.Church planting 3.Medical ministry 4.Literacy mission..It was interesting to know that the most of the sponsor money which came to the organization was completely from India ..
Rev. Theodore Williams was an excellent Bible expositor and preacher. His Knowledge of the Word and his preaching skills were well known worldwide. He had an English Broadcast of back to the bible and “Satyavasanam” a Tamil programme through which he influenced many people to turn away from their lukewarm faith. He has further authored many books which were published and translated into many languages…He was the chief speaker of the world famous Maramon convention which is still held annually..
He married a canadian women Miss.Esther in 1971 after knowing that she was the God destined woman for her and with whom his aspirations and visions matched..They both decided to continue their ministry and life without begetting a child..Maybe,that lead to his downfall in moral life which hit his life and ministry to a great extent..But,still he boldly confessed his sin in the open ,repented for it and set a good example like David,Apostle Paul.He infact gave back his ordination and Doctorate which he earned by writing a thesis on “Holiness”..The reason he quoted was ,”When I myself has lost the holiness,i don’ve any qualification to hold this doctorate” .A world renowned preacher at one stage was reduced to a lonely house in chennai devoid of any ministry oppurtunities.To worsen the situaiton His wife sustained a hip fracture .Still,God was gracious to provide financial support to him..
At one stage when his friends met him in order to persuade him to return into ministry since they were worried about his deep theological knowledge which might be useful for many ,getting wasted..That time he replied “I know God has forgiven me,but still my body is fighting with all those feelings of temptations..Till i feel confirmed that I’ll not repeat the same sin ,I’ll not return back to ministry” .And he even added that He is happy to take care of his wife ,doing house hold things without the help of any maid and infact he was glad that He is able to spend more tiime in Meditating Bible and praying.What an amazing humility it was..In a Christian world where there are bogus doctorates and people who still project the “Holy image” even after falling in sin and leading a sinful,luxurious life,Theodore williams sets a example of how to Completely obey to God ..This again showed the indifference or carelessness he had for fame or prestige in this world,rather the crave for the Love of Christ and Eternity…
After many years he got back into ministry and started sharing the Word of God worldwide..His ordination and Doctorate was returned back to him again..He again became a active participant in IEM,FMPB,BYM and published many books ,CD’s of his bible teachings..They turned useful for many and brought many into the fold of Christ..During the last public meeting he preached in Madurai,many surrendered them to Christ..In this situation his wife Esther died in 2009..That affected him and eventually after few months He breathed his last too on 29th December 2009 and went to be with the LORD.. Dr Williams was prepared for his end and knew “it is well with (his) Soul.” He lived life to the fullest and indeed fulfilled the purposes of God in his generation.
(Personally the life of this man of God has taught me lot of things–Having the spine to stand for Christ in any situation,Humility,complete obedience to God..I thank God for this wonderful man and indeed pray that many like him should rise in the christendom today.)…