Ok Ji-jun

Ok Ji-jun

Born on July 14, 1912

Address: Dong-ri 151, Sariwon-eup, Hwanghae-do

Graduated from Sariwon Public Primary School

Worked as a car driver; ran a petrol engine and farm equipment business

Baptized in December 1937 and joined the Deungdaesa

Arrested on June 29, 1939

First trial decision made on July 14, 1942

Sentenced to two years and a half years’ imprisonment; 400 days served before the verdict included

Died on December 6, 2000

Interrogation at the Gyeonggi-do police station, September 26, 1939

Q: What are your thoughts on the Sino-Japanese War?

A: That war has caused the death of countless people on both sides. The God we worship doesn’t condone the taking of human life under any circumstances, so as his true servants, we can never be involved in killing others. As long as Jehovah’s command to refrain from taking human life is indelibly written in the Bible, I cannot obey the emperor’s command to kill others.

Interrogation at the Gyeonggi-do police station, September 26, 1939

A: As Jehovah’s Witnesses, we do not bow down before anything except Jehovah God. We learned that it is idol worship if we bow down to anyone except Jehovah. The Bible also includes this command. That is why we cannot practice the royal shrine worship. The Japanese emperor is a creature of Jehovah because he is also a human like us. Therefore, we cannot practice royal shrine worship.

Interrogation at Gyeonggi-do police station, September 26, 1939

Q: If you are a soldier sent to the frontline during the Sino-Japanese War and ordered to kill your enemies, what would you do?

A: I will follow God’s teaching against the order of the state, and I will not kill the enemy, even if it is against the law of the state, I will not do so.

Interrogation at the Gyeonggi-do police station, September 26, 1939

Q: Since the Sino-Japanese War broke out, have you joined a patriotic movement or donated toward the national defense?

A: I think that those kinds of things are behind military services that support the work of killing humans, so I do not do those things.

Q: Have you ever sent a comfort bag*?

A: I’ve never done so for the same reason.

*Comfort bag: A gift packet prepared by civilians to be sent to Imperial Japanese Military soldiers for the purpose of encouraging them.

Interrogation at the Gyeonggi-do police station, September 26, 1939

A: I do not join in farewell ceremonies for soldiers because the solders go into battle to kill humans. Joining in farewell ceremonies for soldiers who will kill humans is like promoting and supporting the killing of humans. That’s why I do not join in such ceremonies.

Third interrogation at Gyeonggi-do police station, (third), June 10, 1940

Q: Do you still think that the doctrines of the Deungdaesa are not bad?

A: I think they are not bad. I believe that they are definitely the truth.

Q: Will you ever change your belief in the future?

A: I will never change until I die.

Hearing at Gyeongseong (Seoul) District Court, July 9, 1941

Q: Have you ever worshipped in the Joseon royal shrine or other shrines since becoming one of Jehovah’s Witnesses?

A: I would do it when I was in elementary school, before I became one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. But I haven’t since becoming one of Jehovah’s Witnesses.

Q: Why not?

A: I have not practiced it because the Bible says that we should not bow down to any gods except Jehovah God.

Hearing at Gyeongseong (Seoul) District Court, July 11, 1942

Q: The doctrines of the Deungdaesa are wrong, and the ultimate goal of the organization is to rebel against the Japanese government. Are you not of a mind to give up on your belief? 

A: As for me, I don’t think that the doctrines are wrong.

© Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania 2019.

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