Archive for the ‘Publisher Update’ Category

The Divine Purpose

July 4, 2010

Here is the first in a series of promo videos for some of our favorite books around Solid Ground that we think you should know more about. Enjoy!

A Welshman With A Heart For God

November 25, 2009

I first came across the name of Peter Jeffery about twenty years ago when I picked up a little book called ALL THINGS NEW. It was a book for those beginning the Christian life, and it immediately struck me as being the perfect book to put into the hands of a new convert. So simple. So clear. Right to the heart of the matter.

I soon began to pick up other books by this unknown author, and each time I found that he wrote in a way that a child could understand, and an educated adult be informed. He wrote from his heart and his words spoke to my heart. I wrote to him and got him to send me some tapes of his sermons, and in October 1992 I welcomed him and his wife Lorna from their home in Wales to the United States for the very first time. Peter had come to preach on Long Island and in New Jersey, and he was a blessing immediately. All who heard him speak loved him and were drawn to his love for the Savior, and his passion for the Gospel.

Seeking God by Peter Jeffery

This afternoon Solid Ground Christian Books welcomed a brand new edition of his justly famous evangelistic booklet SEEKING GOD. It is one of my very favorite booklets to give to those who are unconverted. There is frankness in this booklet that is refreshing. Here is a sample:

“It is for such a person (a genuine seeker for God) that this little book is written. The ‘curious’ seeker will not benefit from it; in all probability he will not read it all the way through, but will lose interest very soon. The ‘intellectual’ seeker will argue with everything and will find no satisfaction in these pages. To both of these I would say very solemnly that there is no virtue in merely seeking. You will seek your way to hell, unless you see that your real need is to seek a Savior.”

Chains Of Grace by Peter Jeffery

The first time I read those last words I was stunned. I was not used to such straight talk in evangelistic books and tracts. I know several people who came to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ through reading this material, and hundreds, if not thousands throughout the world will look forward to meeting Peter in heaven one day.

Peter has a heart for God, but he has a heart that is very weak. He had to leave the ministry several years ago because of his weak heart, and now he is not strong enough to preach except on a rare occasion. The ways of God with man are very mysterious. He always knows what He is doing and we must trust Him at all times, especially when circumstances seem to be against us. If you know people who need the Lord I urge you to get copies of SEEKING GOD by Peter Jeffery. It may be the most important purchase you will ever make.

“How do you decide what to Publish?” Part 2

September 4, 2009

In addition to the four answers given last time to the question above, there are a few more reasons we will pursue a particular project. I will briefly give these additional reasons.

 

Fifth, I have been asked to work with others on projects that would be too big for them to do on their own. One example would be “The Collected Writings of James Henley Thornwell” which we did a few years ago in conjunction with Greenville Presbyterian Theological Seminary. They have helped us do several projects, including “Famous Women of the Reformed Church” and an upcoming one, “A Theological Interpretation of American History.” Another example would be the book by John Murray, “Calvin on Scripture and Divine Sovereignty,” which we did this year in conjunction with the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, as we celebrated the 500th anniversary of Calvin’s birth.

 

SteppingHwardpic

Sixth, I have been enabled by Calvary Press to take over projects I had done while serving as head over that work so many years ago. Joe Bianchi of Calvary Press has been kind enough to allow me to take over some very important books, such as “Stepping Heavenward” by Elizabeth Prentiss and “More Love to Thee: The Life and Letters of Elizabeth Prentiss” by her husband George L. Prentiss. In addition, Joe turned over “The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit” by B.B. Warfield, as that was a title I conceived of many years ago while on Long Island. I am very thankful that our relationship with Calvary Press has remained strong all these years.

 

Seventh, I have been approached numerous times by living authors to launch new projects that have never seen the light of day. We have been privileged to publish four books by Christian apologist James R. White, including “Pulpit Crimes” one of our best-sellers from 2006. We are in the process of publishing the third book by Ray Rhodes, Jr. in our series on Family Worship. When this one is completed we will have a month of daily activities for The Reformation Season, The Thanksgiving Season and the Christmas Season. These books have all been very well received. A dear friend, David Dykstra, wrote his first book in 2006 entitled “Yearning to Breathe Free: Thoughts on Immigration, Islam & Freedom.” This book has had a significant impact due to its timely subject matter and the biblically sound approach of the author.

 

As you can see, there is no simple answer to the question, “How do you decide what books to Publish?” By the way, you may have noticed that we did not give the answer, “Will it sell?” Solid Ground is committed to truth. Our goal is to produce books that will be true to Scripture. We are convinced that the Lord will honor our work as long as we remain true to our original mission. We ask for prayer as we go forward in these tough economic times. We are in need of wisdom from on high as we go forward. One of the passages that has encouraged me for many years is found in Psalm 90:17, “And let the beauty of the LORD our God be upon us, And establish the work of our hands for us; Yes, establish the work of our hands.”


“How do you decide what to Publish?” Part 1

August 31, 2009

 

This is another question I often face as I speak with people about Solid Ground Christian Books. There is no simple answer. In fact, there are several answers to that question, depending upon the angle from which the question is faced.

 

First, I publish books that have ministered to me in my walk with the Lord. An example of this would be Benjamin B. Warfield’s book entitled The Power of God Unto Salvation.WarfieldPowerofGodSalvationpicOne of my dearest friends from Seminary days introduced me to Warfield and to a sermon titled “The Paradox of Omnipotence” which centers upon the rich young ruler in Luke 18. That sermon struck me over 30 years ago and it has ministered to me dozens of times over the years. After beginning Solid Ground I learned that the sermon was contained in a book of sermons by Warfield that was out of print. Thus I was thrilled to bring it back to minister to others as it had done to me.

 

Second, I publish books that I have discovered in the midst of my daily diggings on the Internet. There are times that I will be looking for books recommended by men like Spurgeon in Commenting and Commentaries that are no longer available. I will then go and search on used book sites until I find a clean copy that I can purchase for a reprint. This is the most common method.

 

Third, I publish books that have ministered to others and who tell me I need to reprint them. There are numerous examples of this method, including A Pastor’s Sketches which was rediscovered by David Vaughn, long-time missionary in France. There have been dozens of people who have been used to encourage me to pursue significant projects. It was Pastor Michael Nevarr of Virginia who is responsible for The Works of Thomas Manton, as he gave me the initial idea, gave me his set to use for the project, and even helped raise some financial help to see the project completed. Jim Cote of Maine sent me a photocopy of Edward Payson’s book Sermons for Christian Families many years ago and kept reminding me of the need for that book. I thank the Lord for people I have never met who have been used to recommend books that are now a significant part of Solid Ground. This is truly a team ministry.

 

Fourth, I publish books that have been available during my lifetime but have gone out of print. Several publishers like Banner of Truth, Kregel, Baker and others have allowed some great books to go out of print. When I discover that they have no plans to bring them back into print I then take up the project and follow the advice Lloyd Sprinkle gave me many years ago: I do it myself. One example would be James Buchanan’s work The Doctrine of Justification. Considered the best work ever produced on the subject, it was unavailable until we gave it a new life. It had most recently been reprinted by Banner of Truth, but they had no plans to bring it back again so we did it, and hundreds have been enriched by its thorough treatment in our fuzzy age.

 

I hope to have a second entry in response to this question in a couple days.


Why Solid Ground?

August 21, 2009

Dozens of times over the last eight years we have been asked the simple question, “Why Solid Ground?” That simple question can be answered in several ways, depending upon the perspective of the person asking the question.

 

Sometimes the questioner is asking why we are involved in publishing Christian books when there are so many other companies that do the same thing. My answer to that question would be that I am convinced that there are hundreds of volumes no longer available to the serious Christian at a price they can afford. Thus we are bringing back books that are often rare and thus very expensive, and offering them at the fraction of the cost. This is how I would answer the question to some.

 

On the other hand, the questioner is often asking the precise question, “Why Solid Ground?” In other words, why did I choose that particular name for this company? That answer is a bit more complicated.

 

It was nine years ago that my precious wife and I relocated our family from Long Island, New York, where we had been for 19 years, to Birmingham, Alabama. I was in the midst of a significant change in careers when we began to find one closed door after another. Our savings was about gone and our prospects were so low that our only way of survival was to sell my most precious earthly possession: My Books. 

 

We began to cry out to the Lord for direction as the doors continued to close. One night when we were both at the very end of our rope we literally were crying to the Lord for direction for our future. Having already sold most of my most valuable books, the thought came to my mind that perhaps I could try to start reprinting old books once again as I had done eleven years earlier when I began Calvary Press in Amityville, NY.

 

As soon as I shared this with my wife she responded, “Now I feel like we are finally on solid ground.” Instantly I said to her, “That’s it. That’s the name.” She did not know what I meant, so I said to her, “That will be the name, Solid Ground Christian Books.”

 

So you see it was at a time of deep despair that the Lord gave birth to this new work, and the name came at the moment the cloud lifted and an answer was given to our desperate cry for help. How gracious of the Lord to bring us to the end of ourselves before opening our eyes to see once again that He is Jehovah Jireh, the Lord who provides.

 

 

“Do it yourself.”

August 11, 2009

In the Fall of 1989, while I was serving as Pastor of Calvary Baptist Church, Amityville, NY, my eyes were directed to a book for young men by W.B. Sprague. As I read the Introduction I noticed that it was written by an acquaintance of mine, also a pastor in New York. It appeared that this reprint had been done at his request, so I decided to call him about an idea I had been considering for some time. I called and told him about a potential small book, Thoughts for Young Men by J.C. Ryle. He urged me to call Lloyd Sprinkle, founder of Sprinkle Publications and tell him my idea. I immediately called Lloyd and told him about the Ryle book. He thought that it was a great idea but said he had projects already set for the next two years. He then said something that changed my life: “Do it yourself.”

 

Those three words sent me forth on a mission which has resulted in more than 250 titles and hundreds of thousands of books now ministering in all four corners of the globe. That little book, Thoughts for Young Men, brought about the beginning of a ministry called Calvary Press, which is still producing God-honoring, Christ-centered books twenty years later.

 

Upon relocating our lives to the heart of the South in Birmingham, Alabama the Lord opened the door for me to begin a new publishing venture entitled Solid Ground Christian Books in March 2001. Our goal from the beginning has been to uncover buried treasure to the glory of God.  One of these days I will tell the moving story behind our name Solid Ground. I believe it will be a blessing to many far and wide.