Eric Liddell at the Olympics


One of the movies I list in all my social networks as a favorite is Chariots of Fire, the inspiring true story of Eric Liddell. After viewing the Academy Award winning film, I purchased a couple of books about his life and was deeply moved by Eric’s story.
Liddell and his passion for sport and Christ is featured yet again at the Olympics – but this time, it is his life story in the book entitled Running the Race, published by Evangelical Press, also translated in Chinese, that is drawing all the attention and inspiring attendees of this year’s Beijing Summer Olympics.
A leading publisher of Reformed and Evangelical literature, Evangelical Press, has opened new doors of opportunity by partnering with a local Chinese publisher in the translation and distribution of tens of thousands of copies of an exciting new and readable biography, authored by Rev. John Keddie, an adviser to the film Chariots of Fire. The Chinese version of the book is being officially distributed via both Christian and traditional bookstores in Beijing and in China generally.
In addition, the author, John Keddie and Evangelical Press’ marketing associate Peter Cooper, are on the ground in China promoting the book during the final Olympic week in Beijing but also in Weifang where Liddell is buried and Tianjin where Liddell taught. The book itself captures the enduring fascination of the life of Eric Liddell, known as the “Flying Scotsman” who won the Gold medal in the 400 meters race in the 1924 Summer Olympics in Paris but, more importantly, illustrated that honoring God is the highest human achievement especially when faced with enormous pressure to compromise. It also tells of his missionary work in China after his Olympic success and how he remained in the country during World War II and died in the land of his birth.
“It is thrilling to see how eager the Chinese are to read ‘Running the Race’ and embrace the story of Eric Liddell. In fact, Liddell, who, due to his birth and death in the country is honored as China’s first Olympic champion and they are drawn to this great man who cut his athletic career short so that he could serve Christ among the Chinese people during their hour of severest trial,” so reports Peter Cooper from Beijing, “And best yet, through our efforts, the gospel that Eric preached, is still being preached today in the land that he loved. The race that he started, is still being run today for God’s glory.”
To learn more about the Eric Liddell and Running the Race, download a sample chapter from the book and read Sebastian Coe’s foreword (British former Olympic Gold Medalist and chairman of the Organizing Committee for the 2012 London Olympics), please visit this link. Also check Peter Cooper’s blog as he reports on the day to day activities surrounding the promotion of “Running the Race” in China.
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