Converting to Christ 14 years ago, a male believer in China’s northeastern Liaoning Province spent eight years making three copies of the Old and New Testaments and transcribing the “Streams in the Desert”.
Besides attending services and gatherings, a believer named Bai Dianfu of Ark Church in Datun Town, Anshan City, used his fragmented time to copy the Bible every day with a fountain pen and a Chinese brush pen.
On October 2, 2022, after the Sunday service at the church, he was interviewed at home by the Gospel Times, a Chinese online Christian newspaper.
First believing in the Lord, his wife, Liu Xuezhi, could not recognize some words in the Bible with a low level of literacy, having difficulty praying and singing. Having graduated from a senior high school before the Cultural Revolution, Bai helped his wife to understand the Bible, pray, and praise. With affirmation for him, a pastor and a female believer told him that his help might have its origin in the will of humans without the guidance of the Holy Spirit. They advised him to believe in Christ and led him in attending church services. After making a prayer of confession, he withdrew and destroyed all idols in the family. He participated in church activities with his wife, becoming a "Christian couple".
Getting up at five o'clock to pray, read the Bible, and praise, he began to copy and read the Bible following physical activities after breakfast. For eight years, more than 2920 days, he spent four or five hours a day transcribing the scriptures, having finished three copies of the Bible (about 28 million words) and one copy of “Streams in the Desert” which has 513,000 words, sometimes with a Chinese calligraphy brush pen. On the contrary, more than 10 years ago, half of 40 believers at a conference said they hadn’t read through the Bible, though some had believed in Jesus for a long time.
In addition to practicing spiritual disciplines, Bai saw the salvation of the Lord and accepted biblical truth while copying and reading the Bible, with no typos, smears, or corrections in the paper.
Besides buying several thick blank notebooks for him, Bai’s daughter, a teacher at a university in the provincial capital, spent 200 yuan to bind his first copy of the Bible into a hardcover edition which can be retained by future generations to be a “family heirloom”.
Bai used to be very sick and always went to the hospital for consecutive years after retirement. He said he began to copy the Bible after the baptism, with myopia cured unexpectedly when copying it for the third time. He stated, "My most serious diseases are cardiac arrhythmias and mitral regurgitation, for which doctors said I needed surgery But I’m just engaged in taking medicine, praying, taking exercise, reading and copying the Bible without surgery. I can play Bawu (a Chinese wind reed instrument) and Hulusi (a cucurbit flute) and once presented the hymn "A Fellow Traveler" on the latter instrument in Laohutun Church, Anshan City, which held an autumn harvest celebration on October 8.
(The article was originally published by the Gospel Times and was written in Anshan, Liaoning Province)
- Translated by Abigail Wu