Wordless Book

Wordless Book

A Wordless Book is a Christian evangelistic device. Evidence points to it being invented by the famous London Baptist preacher Charles Haddon Spurgeon, in [http://www.spurgeon.org/sermons/3278.htm a message given on January 11] , 1866 to several hundred orphans regarding Psalm 51:7 "Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. [Spurgeon (1911), p. 565] " It is called a "book", as it is usually represented with pages, although it can be shown on a single page or banner. The book consists of several blocks of pure color that, in sequence, represent a nonverbal catechism for the instruction of children, the illiterate, or people of different cultures about basic Christian teachings. [Austin (2007), 1-10] However, the presentation of the book is meant to be a verbal experience, providing the "reader" a visual cue to expound Christian doctrine extemporaneously or in impromptu situations.

Variations on a theme

Spurgeon’s concept only contained three colors: “first was black, the second was red, and the third was pure white”
* Black: representing the “sinful state” of humanity “by nature”. Usually referred to as the dark page.
* Red: representing the blood of Jesus.
* White: representing the “perfect righteousness which God has given to believers through the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ his Son”.

By 1880 at least, the book was being widely used in evangelism among orphanages, Sunday schools, and in cross-cultural missions.

Different versions came about when Dwight Lyman Moody added another color: gold – representing Heaven in 1875 [Austin (2007), p. 167] . Hudson Taylor and missionaries of the China Inland Mission used the four color version in open-air preaching and individual evangelism. Modern versions include even more colors, such as green "to grow in the knowledge of God". It has been used by missionaries and teachers such as Jennie Faulding Taylor, Amy Carmichael, Fanny Crosby (who was blind), and modern day Child Evangelism Fellowship which added a fifth color: green - representing one's need to grow in Christ after salvation.

Color cosmology

The success of the Wordless Book in communicating with East Asian peoples is arguably due to the influence of "color cosmology" (wuxing) [Austin (2007), 1-10] or color psychology in Chinese culture. For example, in Chinese symbolism, red is the color of good luck and success, and is used for decoration and wedding attire (during the traditional half of the wedding ceremony, while the bridal attire in the modern half is usually white). Money in Chinese societies is traditionally given in red packets; while white is the funeral color instead of black.

See also

*Color symbolism
*19th Century Protestant Missions in China
*Christianity in China

Two books published by Child Evangelism Fellowship under the title "The Wordless Book"

* ISBN 9-90117-036-2
* ISBN 9-90117-026-5




Further reading

*Historical Bibliography of the China Inland Mission

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Игры ⚽ Поможем сделать НИР

Look at other dictionaries:

  • wordless — adjective Date: 15th century 1. not expressed in or accompanied by words < a wordless picture book > 2. silent, speechless < sat wordless throughout the meeting > • wordlessly adverb • wordlessness noun …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • PSALMS, BOOK OF — This article is arranged according to the following outline: < <title> > place in the canon number of psalms verse division division into books composition of the psalter date of the psalter ascription to david types of psalms psalms… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Children's Book of the Year Award: Picture Book — Awarded for Excellence in Australian picture books Presented by Children s Book Council of Australia Country Australia First awarded 1955 …   Wikipedia

  • Mercer Mayer bibliography — This is a list of the works of Mercer Mayer. Contents 1 List of titles 2 Little Critter related books 2.1 Little Critter main series 2.2 The new adventures …   Wikipedia

  • Charles Spurgeon — Charles Haddon Spurgeon Born 19 June 1834(1834 06 19) Kelvedon, Essex, England Died …   Wikipedia

  • Bibliography of Mercer Mayer — This is a list of the works of Mercer Mayer.List of titlesThe following is a partial list of books that Mercer Mayer has written and/or illustrated. It also includes books and items that are related to Mercer Mayer and his creations (like… …   Wikipedia

  • Istvan Banyai (artist) — Istvan Banyai (born in Budapest, Hungary, February 27, 1949) received his BFA from Moholy Nagy University of Art and Design, Budapest and gained prominence as a commercial illustrator and animator in the mid 1980s when he emigrated to the United… …   Wikipedia

  • Child Evangelism Fellowship — Founder(s) Jesse Overholtzer Type 501(c)3 non profit religious Founded 1937 Location Warrenton, Missouri, US (World H …   Wikipedia

  • Dwight L. Moody — Preacher, evangelist and publisher Born February 5, 1837(1837 02 05) Northfield, Massachusetts …   Wikipedia

  • Timeline of Christian missions — This timeline of Christian missions chronicles the global expansion of Christianity through a sampling of missionary outreach events. A more general timeline of Christianity and History of Christianity is also available. Apostolic Age Earliest… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”