I am often asked the question, “What made you start the Local Church Bible Publishers Ministry?” Well, before I answer that question, I would like to give you a brief history of how and why I am involved in the Bible ministry at all. After high school, I went into the Air Force for 7 ½ years during the Vietnam era, married, drifted deeply into the world, and traveled to 37 foreign countries, walking the ground that Jesus and Paul walked, but not appreciating it.
Then, in 1978, God put a stop to my foolish ways! He saved me, changed me, and shortly after that, He called me to serve Him. I surrendered my “resources” and then surrendered to fly Scriptures with the Wings Bearing Precious Seed ministry. It wasn’t long on the deputation trail, that the Lord redirected me to raise money for paper on which to print the Word of God, so that there would be Scriptures to distribute to missionaries around the world. I was excited to be a part of getting John-Romans and New Testaments around the world, but I began to see that it was getting harder and harder to buy King James Bibles in America. God started working on my heart to somehow produce good quality leather Bibles inexpensively for God’s people.
I researched everything I could find out about this enormous project and began to share my burden with pastors. I started to raise money to get this project going. Finally, I had $11,000 and I was able to buy signatures (unsewn Bibles) from Oxford and then have good covers put on them. Next, I bought some Bibles from the bindery and they put covers on for me. This continued for several years, and we brought them to churches and let people give us a love offering for them. The cost to produce them was $20-$30 each and we got love offerings of 25 CENTS for one up to $100. God “balanced the books” and increased our faith. Then, one day, a pastor friend told me that the Bibles I had on my table were not true King James Bibles. I was appalled. He said they had many changes in them, and after MUCH research, I found out he was right.
My wife and I went shopping to all of the thrift stores in and around the Phoenix area and came back to our camper with about 25 different King James Bibles for comparison. Using a list from that pastor, we began our study and found out that ALL of the American publishers were making changes (some as many as hundreds or more) and still calling it a King James Bible. From that day forward, we determined to do all in our power to keep the Word of God pure. Psalm 11:3 says, “If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?” And, Psalm 12:6,7 admonishes us with, “The Words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shall preserve them from this generation for ever.” After seeing all of these changes, I began calling some of these publishers and their comments went like this, “most people wouldn’t notice, and if they did, they wouldn’t care anyway. It’s still the Bible.” Is it really? This brings me to the answer to my question. I believe the King James Bible is the inspired, inerrant, infallible, preserved Word of God for the English speaking people of today, and as “they” continue to “dumb it down”, it will lose its power to convict of sin, righteousness, and judgment. I see that many pastors across America have taken it too lightly and sadly, many have even turned from it. It is because they do not see their responsibility as God sees it. In Romans 16:25,26, God gave us the responsibility to make His Word known to all nations through the Scriptures (“…to him…by the scriptures…to all nations…”), and then in I Tim 6:13,14,20, God gives the command to pastors to KEEP the Word of God PURE and without spot (“I give thee charge…that thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable…keep that which is committed to thy trust.”).
Of course, my burden went deeper, and we began to produce more of the Word of God, with volunteer help, and God sent us some folks who knew more about printing and computers than we did. We were then able to add more styles and selection to our King James Bibles, eventually having to put the cost of production on them for the convenience of folks. At this point, we were completely committed to doing this as an extension of our existing Bearing Precious Seed ministry, and Local Church Bible Publishers Ministry was born out of a severe dearth of solid King James Bibles in America. God has greatly blessed over the years, and our ministry has been a tremendous blessing to thousands of folks around the country and the world who otherwise could not afford a good quality Bible.
The Lord showed me in the Old Testament that it was the responsibility of the Kohathite priests to handle the Word of God, even killing Uzzah for touching the ark of God, which contained the testimony on God (II Samuel 6:6,7), and in the New Testament, WE are kings and priests (the saved-Rev. 1:6) and as such, it only makes sense to me that we should be getting the Word of God from the Church, since it is the pillar and ground of the truth (I Tim.3:15), and not from the world. God never intended us to go to the “Philistines” to get our SWORDS! We are so caught up in the world’s system that we run to the “Christian” bookstore to get a Bible when it has always been God’s plan for God’s people to get God’s Word from God’s people! We must change our thinking as the corruption in the world continues. They have BIG MONEY to do a good job and charge God’s people BIG MONEY for what rightly belongs to us from the beginning, but it was never God’s plan.
Eventually, all of the American publishers quit putting good covers on their Bibles, and sent their work overseas, mostly to Korea or Belarus. This caused the one remaining family owned bindery in Vermont to be forced out of business, leaving us with no where to get this quality binding done. BUT GOD had another plan. Our son was able to buy the bindery, move the equipment to Michigan, build a building to house it, learn to run it, train his family, and has been doing our binding since that time.
Since 1996, we have built a large storage barn and a new building to house our ministry here at Parker Memorial Baptist Church in Lansing, MI. God has blessed and given our ministry much growth through the donations of God’s people. We still do not make a profit on our Bibles, but do receive love offerings sometimes and we do have a lot of good books on our website to enhance our ministry. Many of these are on Baptist History; some are just good old books, and some good books by new authors. You can also check out our newest “arm” of the ministries, which is Calvary Publishing, where we print such things as prayer cards, stationary, reprint books, banners, etc.
Right now, we are possibly the only quality King James Bible producer in the United States of America, and although other publishers still sell the King James Bible (many with subtle changes). In addition, their percentage of King James to other versions is low and as this demand decreases, they may continue to see that their profit margin is not worth it and quit producing King James Bibles at all. Already, it has become hard for us to buy Bible paper made in the U.S. as most Bible companies are buying Bible paper made somewhere else. Our process right now is that we buy the paper by the semi truck loads, have it printed by a commercial print shop with large heat set web presses, and then have the Bibles assembled and the book blocks sewn before placing on pallets and transporting to the bindery for the leather covers to be put on. This is a very detailed process and each Bible is touched almost twenty five times to bring you the quality Bibles that we produce. On our website, you can also watch a video of the bindery process, which is very impressive. God is so good.
I am so thankful that the Lord saw fit so many years ago to reach down and save an old drunkard so that today God’s people could have the Word of God, should the world quit printing it forever.
Bro. Dennis Deneau