Today India celebrates its Republic Day. In January 26th, 1950, India formally completed its transition to become and independent republic, by adopting a democratic constitution. India has always been deeply religious, and its National Anthem reflects this. Here is the Romanized version of the Indian National Anthem, that is sung in Bengali
Janagaṇamana-adhināẏaka jaẏa hē
Pañjāba Sindhu Gujarāta Marāṭhā
Drābiṛa Utkala Baṅga
Bindhya Himācala Yamunā Gaṅgā
Taba śubha nāmē jāgē,
Taba śubha āśiṣa māgē,
Gāhē taba jaẏagāthā.
Janagaṇamaṅgaladāẏaka jaẏa hē
Jaẏa hē, jaẏa hē, jaẏa hē,
jaẏa jaẏa jaẏa jaẏa hē.
The following link is a very powerful rendition, sung by many famous Indian singers.
The Indian National Anthem is actually a prayer, which can be translated in this way:
You are the ruler of the minds of all people,
Dispenser of India’s destiny.
Your name rouses the hearts of Punjab, Sindh, Gujarat and Maratha,
Of the Dravida, Utkala and Bengal;
It echoes in the hills of the Vindhyas and Himalayas,
mingles in the music of Yamuna and Ganga and is
chanted by the waves of the Indian Ocean.
They pray for Your blessings and sing Your praise.
The saving of all people waits in Your hand,
You dispenser of India’s destiny.
Victory, victory, victory to You.
Jesus is the God who is described in this prayer, although the poet Nobel prize winner Rabindranath Tagore did not realize it. Below, I have broken down this translation along with corresponding verses in the Bible ascribing these attributes to Jesus.
Indian National Anthem
|You are the ruler of the minds of all people||
|You are the … Dispenser of India’s destiny||
|Your name rouses the hearts of Punjab, Sindh, Gujarat and Maratha, Of the Dravida, Utkala and Bengal;||
|[Your Name] echoes in the hills of the Vindhyas and Himalayas, mingles in the music of Yamuna and Ganga and ischanted by the waves of the Indian Ocean.They … sing Your praise.||
|The saving of all people waits in Your hand||
|Victory, Victory, Victory to You!||
The National Anthem reminds me of a passage in Acts 17:23. For as I passed along and observed the objects of your worship, I found also an altar with this inscription, ‘To the unknown god.’ What therefore you worship as unknown, this I proclaim to you. There is an urgency, because the Bible says:The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent, because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a Man [Jesus] whom he has appointed; and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead (Acts 17:30). May God reveal Himself in truth and glory to all the people of this great nation.