Lynn Camp tells of a time when he used to visit Budapest, behind the Iron Curtain. He met Ivan Martos who had permission to travel to Vienna, Austria, for bank business. On one of Ivan’s trips, Hungarian guards entered his train just before the Austrian border and found Ivan’s Bible. Angrily shouting, “What is a man in your position doing with a Bible?” the guard threw the Bible out the window of the moving train. Ivan was distraught. He poured out the discouraging story when Lynn met him at the Vienna train station.
About two years later, on another trip to Vienna, they met, and this time Ivan was overjoyed. He had received a postal package in Budapest—it was his Bible. An apologetic note accompanied the Bible:
Our children were playing one day along the railroad tracks and found your Bible. Not knowing what it was, one of them took it to his grandmother who immediately recognized it as a Bible. Word quickly spread through the little village on the border. Some of our older people had possessed Bibles before they were banned and remembered the significance and power of the Word of God. We decided to conceal the discovery while those who so desired would make handwritten copies. That joyful task lasted two years. Please forgive our keeping your Bible so long. But you might like to know that we are now a secret band of about 30 who have baptized each other and seek to follow Jesus in our daily lives.
The Bible is God’s inspired correspondence! It contains His Gospel seed that is so effective wherever it is sown. It always produces fruit when it encounters “good soil” hearts. That is why we promote Bibles for Millions. Most people are like the Ethiopian official who was reading Isaiah. Philip asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?” and the reply was, “How can I, unless someone guides me?” (Acts 8:30-31) People need help. Therefore, more than Bible distribution, Bibles for Millions is Bibles with relationships. WBS Study Helpers send Bibles to their Students whose studies prove their interest. Your generosity allows WBS to make the Bible free, with Study Helpers or their congregations just paying for the shipping to qualified students.
As Lynn’s story shows, the gift of a Bible is priceless! For many poorer Students, our WBS courses are the first booklets ever received, and our WBS Study Bible is the first book they’ve ever owned. What excitement! And what a combination. The Bible’s study notes parallel WBS courses. For Students who have already taken WBS courses, the Bible’s study notes delve deeper. They dive into new discoveries for personal ownership of the truth. For recipients yet to take courses, the Bible offers the same helps and invites them into the interactive studies with a personal Study Helper. Either way, this Bible fosters relationships that sow the seed and bear fruit. The Bible with relationships leads to the ultimate relationship: “This is eternal life, that they know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent” (John 17:3).