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When Raymond Lim, who had dabbled in mysticism, accepted Christ, “God allowed me to see inside my body. It was bright, clean and pure. There was no more trace of darkness", he said. Photo by Ruel Calitis on Unsplash.

From young, Raymond Lim was hooked on martial arts.  

Judo, karate, taekwondo, Chinese martial arts. You name it, he has tried it.  

There was only one problem. He was skinny and had a slight built.  

Whenever he watched movies and saw supernatural feats being performed, he would wonder if those feats were even remotely possible.  

Raymond in his teenage days.

Raymond in his teenage days.

By then, he had graduated from university and started working as an assistant manager at a bank. He was part of a team who was responsible for building the bank’s branches and systems.  

The altar

One day, Raymond met a man in a coffeeshop in the central part of Singapore. He recognised the man as one of his contractors who was helping to build the bank branches and they began talking.   

The man told him how he had just survived a car accident. He was driving back from Malaysia and the car was a total wreck from the impact but he had not a scratch on him.   

His mind was filled with thoughts of violence and injury. Power consumed him.

He said: “My god saved me.” Curious, Raymond asked, “What kind of god is that?” And so, the man told him about his god who gave him power — power over the elements and power to perform miracles.  

To illustrate, the man took a chopstick and put it at the centre of his throat. He then asked Raymond to push it in. Raymond, of course, did not want to do so.   

“Okay, I will do it then!” he said. He shoved the hand holding the chopstick into his throat and the chopstick broke. He asked Raymond if he would like him to demonstrate other feats. Raymond declined but asked him to bring him to where he could find this power. 

Once there, he saw the followers sparring and performing different martial art forms: The dragon, the snake, the tiger. Their moves were flawless and powerful. The master came up to him and asked him what he could do for Raymond. Pointing at the followers outside, Raymond said: “I want that kind of power”.   

The master said: “See these spirits that are up there on the altar? If you will stand here and invite them into your heart, you can have the power. But you will have to put a little donation on the altar.” Raymond agreed. He stripped down to his pants and approached the altar.  

Raymond in his younger days.

In his search for power, Raymond found “his mind darkened”.

Raymond was then asked which kind of spirit he wanted. “If you want to fight the monkey style, then you invite the monkey spirit. If you want to fight the tiger style, then you invite the tiger spirit.” 

He stared at the altar and could not decide. So he commanded his soul to step aside and then invited all of the spirits to come in.  

Afterwards, Raymond immediately went outside and started sparring. His hands moved and his legs followed along smoothly, as if the styles were automatically downloaded to him. He could feel the energy flow through his body but it felt unreal. He was executing the moves, but it felt like he was not the one doing them. It was like being a passenger in a car that was his body but someone else was in the driver’s seat.  

The “power” he had obtained gave him a tremendous high. Months passed and as he continued sparring, his mind became darkened. 

Whenever he was merely walking along the road, his mind would be filled with thoughts of violence and injury. Power consumed him and he wanted to test out his newfound prowess.   

However, he did not get into fights. He was working then and hung out at coffee joints late at night. This was back in the 1970s and sarabhat coffee joints were made up of hawkers manning their coffee and tea carts under trees.   

The supernatural 

Fearing that sooner or later he may get injured or killed from a fight, he went back to the master and asked for protection from knife attacks.  

He asked Raymond: “You’re ready? You want that too?” Then he explained: “There are three kinds of protection I can give you.”  

“The first kind I can give you is an amulet. When you wear it, you will have protection. When you don’t wear it, you don’t have protection. The second way is I can write it down in blood. But on the first and the fifteenth days of the lunar month, you will have to come back here and recharge the power.”  

He came towards Lim, using the swords to stab and slash him. 

He added: “But there is a third type that I can do. I can write it from my spirit into your spirit and nothing can ever take it away.”  

“But if you ever get sick and you need to go to a hospital for an operation, you will suffer much pain because your skin will become like iron and any needle or blade will have difficulty entering your skin.”  

Raymond decided to take the third type of protection. 

Back then, his father was also very interested in supernatural matters. He was the one who led his eight sons into the world of mysticism and supernatural beliefs.  

On the night that Raymond was supposed to receive his protection against knife attacks, he took his father and brother along. Again, he stripped down to his pants and stood before the altar. The master went into a trance and started spirit writing on him.  

When it was completed, two of the followers came to hold him by the arms, with one on each side. The master then went into a room and took out three swords: The broad sword, the double-edged straight sword and the kris. He took a stack of paper and used the swords to slice through them to show how sharp they were. 

He came towards Raymond, using the swords to stab and slash him. It was at full thrust – front, back and in the stomach.  

His father closed his eyes and muttered under his breath that one stupid son was now gone. His second brother presumed he would be the eldest son before nightfall.  

He heard the voice say: “Why don’t you just kill yourself and everything will be all right?”  

However, the swords grazed Raymond’s skin but they did not cut through. There were red welts but no cuts. “Now I have it. Now I have the power,” Raymond declared. His mind continued to be consumed with thoughts of violence and he was eager to put his iron-clad skin to the test.  

However, he developed severe asthma soon after.  

Raymond began to dread the night because each time he tried to lie down and sleep, he had to fight for breath. On most nights he could be found sitting up in a chair, clinging to a pillow and gasping for breath all night. This went on for several months.  

Yet when the sun rose, his breathing difficulties would go away.  

Raymond went to see many doctors who gave him pills and steroids and various kinds of medication. It was a strange kind of asthma as he only experienced it at night. 

His family doctor told me: “Son, there are two kinds of asthma, one that can be cured and one which cannot be cured. You’ve got the second type. Here are steroids you have to take for the rest of your life.”  

One night as Raymond was struggling with breathing, a voice spoke to him.  

He heard the voice say: “You’re now 26 years old, look at your fiancee, how can you marry her? You don’t even know if you’ll live till you are 30. Look at your father and mother, they are not rich people, they can’t afford to pay your medical bills. Why don’t you just kill yourself and everything will be all right?”  

He felt miserable and hopeless, and was desperate to find a cure.  

Yearning for healing

One Saturday night, a Christian couple came and invited Raymond’s father to a Christian gathering at a house in Siglap. He agreed to go along. When he came back at about one o’clock in the morning, he had received Jesus Christ as his Lord and Saviour.  Throughout that sleepless night, his father said he saw Jesus in a white robe. 

The next day, Raymond’s father shared his newfound faith in God with his wife and eight sons. He was ecstatic but his family members were dismayed. As a family, they always made decisions together. The culture of family loyalty was strong and they esteemed and followed their father’s example. They felt that they had lost their leader and that their father had created a new life without consulting them.   

“But even if none of you follow me to follow Him, I will still follow Him.”

When Raymond’s father spoke to them that day, his countenance exuded peace. He said: “Sons, for 54 years I have been searching for God, and last night I found Him. His name is Jesus Christ. Now it is my dearest wish that all of you follow me to follow Him. But even if none of you follow me to follow Him, I will still follow Him.”

Raymond had never heard his father speak like that.  

To him, his father said: “Raymond, why don’t you come? Come to this meeting. They will pray for you and God will heal you”. Raymond replied, “Healing? Yes, that I want. But Christianity, no I don’t want it.” My father replied, “Never mind, come anyway. They will still pray for you.” So that Saturday, Raymond and his fiancee, Sally, went to the gathering.  

They sat at the last row right at the back of the house and just watched. When the Christians started worshipping and praising the Lord, God’s presence entered the room. Raymond felt his seat becoming hot, his hair standing on its end and his face turning red. He felt very uncomfortable.

Raymond and Sally fishing in the Maldives during a holiday trip.

Raymond and Sally fishing in the Maldives during a holiday.

He turned to Sally and said: “I am looking very funny right now.” But she said, “No, you look perfectly normal.”  Spiritually, he was in turmoil as he could feel the spirits in him jumping around, seeking an exit. Externally, however, nothing seemed amiss.   

The moment the meeting finished, Raymond grabbed Sally by the hand and said: “Let’s get out of here.”  

Fierce battle within

His father invited him to return the following Saturday to the gathering. Raymond agreed because he was desperate to be healed and to finally have a good night’s sleep. He sat there, indifferent to what was going on. Then he heard the speaker inviting those who needed healing to come forward.  

Raymond strode up to the front, turned around, looked everyone in the eye and said: “I have a few words to say.”   

He had walked forward, full of arrogance and defiance, as he had already planned a speech in his head about wanting to be healed on his own terms. Before the audience, he wanted to tell God about his own terms and conditions: You heal me first and when I am ready, then I will come back and say yes to be a Christian.  

There was a fierce battle going on within him and Raymond feared he would not survive the night.  

But all he managed to say that night was he had “a few words to say”. At that moment, he was struck by God.  

His hands shot straight up into the air and his spectacles flew off his face. Tears and mucus were streaming down his face. Raymond felt jolts of super-charged electricity running through his entire body.  

“I knew I was in God’s presence. I also started to manifest the spirits within me, as my hands started doing all the martial arts movements I had learned,” said Raymond.   

The Christians formed a circle around him to pray and commanded the spirits to leave him.  

Raymond’s eyes were closed but he saw thick, dark, swirling clouds. There was a fierce battle going on within him and Raymond feared he would not survive the night.  

At that moment, he decided to say: “I want to be a believer of Jesus Christ!” However, the word “Jesus Christ” would not come out of his mouth. All he could say was: “I want to be a …”  

At that time, Raymond saw two disembodied and bony hands with grey fingernails reaching from the inside of him and holding on to his vocal cords. He did not know what to do and cried out: “Jesus, help me!”  

Immediately, he saw a light, like a laser beam, hitting him straight on the forehead. The light splashed on his body like oil. The torrent of oil flowed down his body, sweeping away the darkness until it was completely gone.  

“God allowed me to see inside my body. It was bright, clean and pure. There was no more trace of darkness. Jesus Christ, the Light of the world, had come into my life,” said Raymond. 

That night, January 31, 1976, he said the Sinner’s Prayer. Both his mother and fiancee who came along with him also prayed to receive Christ.  

The marathon

When Raymond went home, he suffered another asthma attack. But this time, there was no voice speaking in his ear telling him to kill himself. 

“Lord, I want to show them proof of your healing. I want to run a marathon.”

Since he still could not sleep that night, he took a Bible and began reading through the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. He also started reading books on spiritual warfare, deliverance and divine healing to understand more about these aspects.  

Though his asthma still persisted, his smoking addiction disappeared immediately. He went from smoking 70 cigarettes a day to zero the day after. 

Eager for complete healing for his asthma, Raymond said to the Lord: “Lord, when you have healed me, I want to testify of Your goodness and saving grace. I will tell them of what You have done for me. But people will question, ‘How do I know he is healed? How do I know that he isn’t taking medication even now?’”  

He prayed: “Lord, I want to show them proof of your healing. I want to run a marathon … I will train for it and I will run the 42km. Lord, if your healing is not total and permanent, then somewhere along the way I will fall in spasms and people will say You didn’t do a good job.”   

Raymond at a rafting teambuilding activity with his Citibank colleagues in Turkey in 2005.

Raymond at a rafting teambuilding activity with his bank colleagues in Turkey in 2005.

Raymond ran the marathon in 1976 and completed it.

One day he went back and asked the Lord, “Dear Lord, I know you can heal instantly. You took away my smoking addiction immediately but why did it take six months before my asthma was healed?” 

It was through the six months of reading God’s Word that he slowly built the necessary foundation to anchor his faith.  

Raymond said God told him that his spiritual needs were greater than his physical need for healing. 

“Your spirit grows in strength and faith as it feeds on my word. My healing for you will come to pass because I heard you the first night you prayed,” God told Raymond.  

It was then that Raymond realised that, if God had healed him of his asthma instantly, he would given thanks to God but proceeded to go about his old life. It was through the six months of reading God’s Word that he slowly built the necessary foundation to anchor his faith.  

Raymond and his immediate family’s spiritual transformation 44 years ago resulted in a spiritual tsunami that saw over 120 family members, relatives and friends come to faith within a year of the family’s conversion in 1976. 

Raymond and his wife Sally, with their two children Ben and Michelle. Beginning with Raymond, their entire family turned to Christ.

His family experienced the truth written in Acts 16:31: “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.” 

Said Raymond, who is 71 years old now: “I have absolutely no regrets about the decision I made that day when the Lord reached out and brought this sinner from darkness into His marvellous light.”

Read the second part of Raymond Lim’s story of how God sent him out to boardrooms and office corridors to share the Gospel.


“I am a dead man walking”: He was pronounced dead by four doctors

“If you heal me, Hallelujah. If you don’t heal me, also Hallelujah”

About the author

Janice Tai

Salt&Light senior writer Janice is a former correspondent who enjoys immersing herself in: 1) stories of the unseen, unheard and marginalised, 2) the River of Life, and 3) a refreshing pool in the midday heat of Singapore.