Dear Praying Friends:
As you know, we seek to reach educated Chinese around the world with the Good News of Jesus Christ. We do so in two ways: By direct ministry to Chinese, and by mobilizing others to do the same more effectively.
For more than twenty years, we have used the written word as one key tool, with encouraging results. We are often told that articles and books by our team have made a significant impact upon both Chinese and English readers.
Currently, there are thirteen volumes in Chinese written or edited by me. I should say that I write only in English, and leave the translation to Chinese Christians. Each book was produced to meet a specific need in the Chinese church.
The Greek-Chinese Lexicon, which I finished revising last year, provides pastors and scholars with easy access to the original language of the New Testament. New Testament Reference Works shows ordinary Christians how to use Chinese-language tools for Bible study. I am in the process of bringing it up to date.
The abridgment of the Chinese edition of the first four volumes of Carl Henry’s God, Revelation, and Authority provides Christians and seekers with the rich, profound thought of the greatest American theologian in modern times. Henry makes the case for God’s authoritative revelation in a way strengthens believers and answers the main question that inquirers pose. Volumes Five and Six of the abridgment are being translated now in Taiwan.
Confucius and Christ compares and contrasts the example and teachings of these two on the subject of the ideal male. I had three purposes for writing this book: To help Chinese Christian men grow into maturity; to evangelize non-believers; and to show how one might appreciate the value of classical Chinese culture while affirming the transcendent worth of Christ and his saving work.
The Switzerland of the New Testament is a simple commentary on Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, which has been likened to Switzerland which, though small, is rich in beauty. Because of the scope of Ephesians, this volume serves as a survey of basic Christian doctrinal and ethical teaching.
The Way Home: A Faith for the 21st Century does the same, though more briefly, being the lectures I gave at Tunghai University in 2009.
Hope Deferred: Studies in Christianity and American Culture, shows how Christians in America have affected, and been affected by, our society. I am in the process of revising the English draft, for which I hope to find an American publisher. I want Chinese to learn from both our success and our failures. Invitations to lecture on American Christianity come mostly as a result of this book’s Chinese edition and my continuing research.
Knowing the Chinese interest (some would call it an obsession) with health, I wrote The Lord’s Healing Words to appeal to non-Christians and to help believers life healthier, happier lives.
Perhaps the most popular title is an autobiography, which traces God’s mercies to me over the years.
The first volume of Salt & Light: Lives of Faith that Shaped Modern China, edited by GCC associates Carol Lee Hamrin and Stacey Bieler, has already become a bestseller; two more are in preparation.
In North America, all these titles may be purchased from Ambassadors for Christ (www.afcresources.org/bookstore/ )
China: Ancient Culture, Modern Society, co-authored with Dr. Peter Yu, is an introduction to both traditional Chinese culture and modern Chinese society. It’s the only such book of which I am aware. Readers’ responses so far have been quite encouraging.
The latest book is Carl Henry: Theologian for All Seasons, which introduces the theology of God, Revelation and Authority and defends it against what I think are unfair criticisms. A Chinese publisher is looking at it now for possible translation. The editor of a major Chinese academic journal has offered to print a positive review of it if I can find someone to write one.
The Lord’s Healing Words and Jesus: The Complete Man have received positive comments. All these titles are available from Amazon.
Along with Dr. Hamrin, I am co-editor of Wipf & Stock’s new series, Studies in Chinese Christianity. The response to the first two English volumes of the Salt & Light books has been quite enthusiastic. A third volume is almost ready for publication.
I am beginning work on the first volume of another sub-series, Builders of the Chinese Church, and helping to edit other separate volumes for the whole SCC series.
GCC Associate John Barwick is in the final stages of completing his dissertation on 20th –century Chinese Protestants, which we believe will make a very fine contribution.
Aside from our books, we contribute articles and reviews here on the China Institute website, Global China Center, and the ChinaSource online journal, as well as stories for the Biographical Dictionary of Chinese Christianity. Two articles have been submitted to Chinese academic journals at the request of the editors, and another editor has asked me to contribute a long essay for a journal in Taiwan. We are waiting to hear from the Westminster Theological Journal to see whether they will accept my exegetical article on Matthew 7:1-12. I am hoping to turn several papers on Chinese Christianity presented at conferences into articles for academic journals.
As you can easily imagine, this sort of work takes time, discipline, quiet, and much wisdom from God. It is of necessity mostly a hidden, even lonely, effort, with potentially significant results. We need your prayer support.
Please ask God to enable us to complete the tasks he has set before us; to raise up more writers, editors, and translators; to provide financial resources;* and to use our feeble efforts to advance His kingdom.
I once quipped to a fellow faculty member, “Jesus didn’t write a thing,” to which he replied, “Yes, but the Holy Spirit did!”
Your fellow-servant of God, Wright
*Designated donations for the Biographical Dictionary of Chinese Christianity; Global China Center; John Barwick; the Salt & Light series; and the other books in Studies in Christianity, may be sent to Global China Center, PMB 201 977 Seminole Trail, Charlottesville, VA 22901.
Gifts for the support of all the other projects mentioned in this letter should be sent to China Institute, P.O. Box 7312, Charlottesville, VA 22906. All contributions are tax-deductible.