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Wrapped in the words of God in China

Author: Simon Bartz, 11 August 2022

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Zhou Yaqin thanks Bible Society supporters for supplying books to the Baotou Bible Training Centre in China.

Zhou Yaqin’s favourite place at the Bible Training Centre in the Chinese province of Inner Mongolia is its library. The Bible resources there, including books made available by Bible Society supporters, have been pivotal in deepening Zhou’s faith and helped her in her Christian ministry.

‘I have devoured biographies of Christian men and women, read Christian classics and Bible commentaries – all of which have nourished me spiritually. As I serve the Lord in more areas, I am really treasuring the word of God more,’ Zhou says.

In 2011, Zhou was one of the first few graduates of the centre. She came from a Christian family but it was only while studying at the Baotou centre that she feels she was truly born again.

She says, ‘It was during my studies at the Bible Training Centre that I started seeking God honestly, desiring to build a genuine relationship with him. By the time I graduated, my desire to serve the Lord grew so strong that I turned down other job opportunities that came my way. I know for sure that this is God’s calling for me to serve him in his church ministry.’

To study and serve

In 2015, after serving in her local church for several years, she returned to work at the centre.

‘The Bible Training Centre was born out of a vision of our church leaders who saw the Bible training needs of the local churches in this city. Our students come from churches all over Baotou and when they have completed their training, they will return to serve in their own churches,’ Zhou says.

The growth in people coming to faith in China has been so great in recent years that there is now a serious shortage of pastors, with only one trained minister for every 6,700 Christians. Pastors are desperately needed and thanks to Bible Society supporters more and more are now being trained.

Zhou adds that before they had these resources students had a limited understanding of the historical, cultural and geographical context of the Bible. The new materials have changed that, however. The authors have a good understanding of God and his word; they respect and are faithful to the Scriptures. Some time ago, when I was teaching from the Book of Kings, I consulted the biblical exegesis materials in the library. They helped me tremendously in my sharing.’

More books, thanks to you

Going forward, she is more confident that with these resources she can be more effective in her church ministry as a Bible Study teacher and leader. And the number of books at the library is growing all the time, helped by the continued kind giving of Bible Society supporters.

‘Our library presently has a collection of around 5,000 books, although libraries of theological seminaries in China are usually stocked up with at least 10,000 books,’ she says, indicating a possible goal for the future.

Nonetheless, Zhou is certain that all their students would be able to reap the benefits of these Bible resources: ‘As students need many resources for their studies, these books are able to provide them with a broader scope of reference.’

‘On behalf of the students and teachers, I would like to thank Bible Society supporters for their generosity and burden for the Lord’s ministry. When we see these books, we feel their love for God, and it is an inspiration to us all. They serve as a reminder for both teachers and students that we are not alone in dedicating our lives to God’s ministry through our time at the Bible Training Centre. Praise the Lord!’

This story was adapted from the original on

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