Brother David

brotherdavidPROJECT PEARL

One million Bibles smuggled into China

In June 1981, a huge barge containing one million Chinese bibles slipped past Communist border patrols and anchored off a beach in South China.

Time magazine described it as “A remarkable mission…the largest operation of its kind in the history of China.” Many Chinese church leaders today say that Project Pearl was a pivotal moment in their history.

The Church had only just started to re-emerge after decades of brutal oppression and the desperate need of believers everywhere was for Bibles. A quarter of a century later reports are still being received of the tremendous impact those Bibles had on whole communities. Chinese Christians consider Project Pearl a key event which contributed greatly to the mighty revival presently sweeping the world’s most populous nation.

Project Pearl was led by former U.S. Marine Brother David. Along with 19 crew members, he risked his life to bring the Word of God to the spiritually hungry Chinese believers.
Operating under a cloak of secrecy because of the highly-sensitive nature of the work, Brother David and his team worked closely with house church leaders inside China and settled on the bold and risky plan to take one million Bibles into China by boat – in one go. That’s 232 tonnes of Bibles!

Starting with no money, no resources, not even a boat, God supernaturally provided everything needed. The barge sailed from the Philippines to Hong Kong and then on to China. The delivery was successfully completed on the evening of 18 June, 1981. More than 10,000 Chinese believers gathered along a beach near the city of Shantou in southern China and took the one million Bibles away in trucks, cars, donkey carts, on bicycles and strung across bamboo poles. The army arrived at the beach several hours after the delivery but the vast majority of Bibles (at least 90%) had already been successfully moved by the Chinese Christians. Later, the official registered Three-Self church and others denounced Project Pearl by claiming all the Bibles had been confiscated or swept out to sea. It was not true. Within weeks, Project Pearl Bibles had made their way to hungry believers in 18 different provinces and letters of overwhelming gratitude poured in from Christians who had received their first copy of God’s Word.


Project Pearl, and indeed Brother David’s life from the time of his conversion, was focused on seeking first the kingdom of God. He knew what it meant to follow the Way of the Cross, where faith came before comfort and the cares of life and where nothing less was expected from Jesus but to give all for the kingdom of God. Pearl could have failed if the Lord allowed and that would have meant certain imprisonment, torture and possibly even death. Yet Brother David was willing to give his life in order to obey the commands of Christ.

Let’s thank God for faithful servants like Brother David who give their all for the kingdom of God. The story of Project Pearl has just been published, the author Paul Hattaway comments: “The paradox is that Brother David is also an ordinary man, with weaknesses like the rest of us. Yet if the King of kings has been pleased to use him, He can use you and me too.”

Comments (1)add comment

Shaija David said:

Br. Yoon, a Chineese boy got a Holy Book with great difficulty and memorised many chapters of scripture and shared the gospel to many places of China those days as there was accute scarcity of the Book and many got saved. Heaven could no be silent of the zeal of those souls and used another zealist David. I read in 'Heavenly Man' how these Books were an answer to thier prayes. God is great. If there is will there is way!!
May 16, 2013

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Bible verse

I have made you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth - (Isaiah 49:6) Acts 13:47

Missions Quote

"The Christian is not obedient unless he is doing all in his power to send the Gospel to the heathen world." - A. B. Simpson