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For over five decades the Chinese government collected and destroyed Bibles in mainland China. They were very good at their job and virtually every Bible was removed from the nation. In America we talk about the damage it has caused to take prayer out of our public schools, can you even imagine the effect on a nation of 1.3 billion people when the Word of God is completely removed from the hands of the people in the entire nation. To Chinese Christians the Bible is a very precious commodity.
It is estimated that there are over 100 Million Christians in China. It is also estimated that nearly 30,000 people come to Christ every day with 70% of the new converts coming in the rural areas of China. In a decade China could be the largest Christian nation in the world. If the largest Christian nation in the world does not have the Word of God, Christianity worldwide runs the risk of becoming a mile wide but with their knowledge of God only one inch deep.
In the past decade the Chinese government has loosened the restrictions on owning a Bible as long as that Bible is printed in China. The Amity Press in Nang Jing China prints millions of Bibles each year and those Bibles can be legally and openly distributed within China through the established church. Many Christians in the major cities now own a copy of the Bible. There is, however, a drastic shortage of Bibles in the remote rural areas of China. The people living in these rural areas live on less than $200 per year and even if they were willing to spend some of that money on a Bible there are no distribution points in rural areas and it is cost prohibitive to travel to a city to acquire a Bible.
Bibles for China ( www.biblesforchina.org ) was established to take the Word of God to remote poverty stricken areas of rural China. In 2010 Bibles for China purchased and verified the distribution of 27,500 copies of the Bible in several provinces of China. I had the privilege of being part of one of the 2010 distributions. Our Bibles for China team experienced one emotional moment after another as we placed a Bible into the hands of a believer who had been praying for several years that they might own a copy of God’s word in their lifetime. Even though the Chinese are a very stoic people, many broke down and wept and hugged us for the great gift they had received. The following is just one of the stories:
“As our Bibles for China team entered a church in a small rural village in a poor farming area of Shandon Province it was packed with people who had been waiting several hours for our team to arrive to hand out Bibles. We could hear the singing for blocks before we actually got to the church. With the assistance of some leaders from the church, each member of our team went to a different area of the church to hand out Bibles. As I left the back of the church and entered the courtyard area to give Bibles to those who could not get into the building, one woman reached out in a very awkward way for a Bible. One look told me why – her eyes were glazed completely over and it was obvious she was blind. Now the dilemma, with the size of the crowd and the limited number of Bibles for this church should I hand a blind lady a Bible and run the risk that a sighted person would be left out. Even eyes that could not see begged for the precious gift of God’s Word.
God had His angels watching over this woman as her friend got the attention of Jenny our interpreter and told her she had promised this woman she would read her Bible to her each day. A nod Jenny told me it was OK to give this woman a Bible. The tears rolled from her blind eyes as I placed a Bible into her outstretched hands. Her friend was so grateful to see that our team would give this woman a Bible, a very rare and precious commodity, that she grabbed my arm and would not let go. Everyone in the courtyard saw what happened and even though the Chinese are very stoic people, when I hugged both ladies virtually everyone in the courtyard (myself included) shed tears.”
I can’t imagine how I would exist one day without my Bible yet there are literally millions of Chinese Christians who can’t imagine they will ever have even one day with a Bible. Would you be willing to help. Each Bible is $5.00. This includes the printing and purchase in China, the cost of sending in teams to verify the distribution and all the costs to run Bibles for China. Feel free to go to the website at www.biblesforchina.org and check them out.