In his book, “Loving God,” Charles Colson tells about a Russian Jewish doctor by the name of Boris Nicholayevich Kornfeld, a Russian Jewish doctor who was sentenced to a most inhuman Russian prison for a minor political crime in the 1950s. Because he was a physician he did receive some privileges in the prison in return for treating other prisoners. Still he suffered much abuse. His treatment would have in fact been unbearable except that he developed a friendship with another prisoner who through the quality of his witness brought Kornfeld a commitment to Christ.
Kornfeld felt a great inner freedom. He had a patient, a cancer patient, who was awaiting surgery. Kornfeld shared with him what Christ had done in his own life. Kornfeld was so enthusiastic about this change in his own life, that he caught the patient’s attention in spite of his brief lapses brought on by the medicine. Late into the night, the doctor stayed with his patient, sharing with him the unsearchable riches of Christ. Later that night someone slipped into the doctor’s quarters and brutally beat him to death. From a human standpoint that should be the end of the story, but, it is not.
The patient recovered from his surgery, but he was a changed man. Because of Kornfeld’s testimony, he became a Christian–and what a Christian he became. His name–Alexander Solzhenitszyn, who not only won the Nobel prize for Literature in 1970, but even more importantly became one of the world’s most influential voices for Christ. Kornfeld and Solzhenitsyn both learned that the claims of Christ were never meant to merely become another piece of jewelry or become something to adorn our car bumpers. The claims of Christ were always meant to make radical changes in the lives of those around us.