We posted Michael Haykin’s thoroughly interesting and informational article about this last January. In it he listed some encouraging statistics, like,
- There are 167,000 bookstores in China.
- Over the past ten years, more than 200 Christian bookstores have opened throughout China.
- 6.3 billion domestically-published books were sold in China in 2007.
- Currently, the total number of Christian books in legal circulation in China is approximately 600, using a broad definition of “Christian.” About 50 to 60 new titles are being added each year.
- Of that 600, only about 25 or 30 have a Reformed theme.
For at least two years prior to Haykin’s article we’d been praying that God would open a door for us to legally publish one of John Piper’s books in China, and for months afterwards we continued to pray. The new openness to publishing Christian material is still a limited enterprise — only government-approved titles and authors get through.
The process was long, and we almost quit; but God showed us favor, and just a couple months ago the Simplified Chinese version of The Legacy of Sovereign Joy received approval! Already the book has been printed and is for sale in the Mainland.
Translation and publication was done in cooperation with ZDL Books, a Christian media company in Beijing. In their official press release, David Wright, ZDL’s General Manager, has this to say regarding the significance of this book being published:
The growing availability of resources in general is helping to bring the church out from the shadows and equip them for the work ahead. The approval and publication of the first Piper book is an example of the level of change that has already happened and the opportunities that exist.
We praise God for this development and invite you to join us in praying that he use it, as Wright suggests, to equip the Chinese church for the work ahead. You can pray also that he would open the door for many more solid, Christian titles to be made available there (perhaps through the Robert Morrison Project).
To purchase the Simplified Chinese version of The Legacy of Sovereign Joy in China, visit ZDL’s Taobao store, or go to Baojiayin if you need an English-language checkout process. For US purchases, the book will be available at the beginning of 2012.
Recent posts on China —