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God's Smuggler

4.31 of 5 stars 4.31  ·  rating details  ·  18,707 ratings  ·  463 reviews
As a boy he dreamed of being a spy undercover behind enemy lines. As a man he found himself undercover for God. Brother Andrew was his name and for decades his life story, recounted in God's Smuggler, has awed and inspired millions. The bestseller tells of the young Dutch factory worker's incredible efforts to transport Bibles across closed borders-and the miraculous ways ...more
Paperback, 256 pages
Published April 5th 2012 by Chosen Books (first published 1964)
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In my early days of walking with Christ, it seemed every Christian was recommending this book. Thirty years later, I've finally read it. All I can say is: What took me so long?

There have been several books throughout my journey with the Lord that have impacted me so profoundly that I now view the reading of them as milestones in my life. This book may now top the list.

In "God's Smuggler," Brother Andrew tells his own story of smuggling Bibles to Christians behind the Iron Curtain. When he first
Mike (the Paladin)
Written in 1967 I've heard about this book for a long time and always "meant to get around to it". Well based on a recommendation here that reminded me of it I finally got it (after 46 years) and it was well worth the read.

First off this is a Christian read, know that going in. While it has value as a read about the Cold War era it is told from the point of view of a Christian missionary (and those involved with him.

Now for you who have a knee-jerk bad reaction to the word missionary I can only
Jason Mccool
Jul 28, 2013 Jason Mccool rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jason by: Pat McCool
My mom gave me this book in college back in 1995, and for some reason, I waited until last week to read it. Finishing it today, I am dumbfounded that I waited so long to read it. I had apparently started reading it back in 2008, judging from a bookmark left in it, but for some reason, never got more than a few pages into it. This time, I couldn't put it down. I was reading it while brushing my teeth, while eating my cereal, while waiting at stop lights. From Brother Andrew's childhood in Nazi-oc ...more
Natalie Vellacott
This is a classic missionary biography. I just re-read it. I had forgotten that Brother Andrew includes his own personal testimony in the earlier chapters of the book. It's really a great story from angry, drunk, suicidal and anti-God to Christian. God placed people in Andrew's life at key points and I'm sure these people were faithfully praying for him.

The Bible smuggling part of the book is incredible and a reminder that God was and is at work to bring His Word to the unreached. Many times Br
Faith. This entire book is a complete exercise in utter faith. I am in

This is really one of the best books I've ever read, and I think I will now read everything else that he's written. I think every Christian (oh, well non-Christians too, if they would) should read this.

It's also side-splittingly hilarious. Really. And it also takes place partly in Holland. You have no excuse, so go go.
Abigail Prigge
"God's Smuggler" is an inspiring story of missions. I'm encouraged to have more faith in God and to treasure the precious Word of God that I often take for granted. I really enjoyed the first few chapters about Brother Andrew's personal testimony and then later, the glimpses behind the Iron Curtain. God is SO BIG and we can always trust Him.

Some favorite quotes:

"...I could hardly wait to tell Corrie what God had done with the thimbleful of willingness we had offered Him."

"'Why are we worried!' R
Brother Andrew is by his own admission a very ordinary man. Born in a small village in Sint Pancras, the Netherlands, from an early age he was like many children, dreaming about grand adventures. He's the son of the village blacksmith, living in poverty exacerbated by WWII, who joined the armed forces to find those adventures; although that didn't work out, God planted a seed within him, a seed which grew into the Open Doors ministry. Brother Andrew was born, a man who smuggled Bibles behind the ...more
Jasmine Wheeler
Omigosh! I loved this book so much! This is the story of a missionary, called Brother Andrew, who smuggles Bibles behind the border of the Soviet Union! It was so thrilling; the accounts of guards nearly finding the Bibles and missing them by a hair sometimes, this book will give you the thrill of a spy novel without the romantic scenes.
Excellent story of an ordinary guy who answered the call to live an extraordinary life trusting God.
Sarah Morgan
Amazing story of God's faithfulness in this incredible man's life. Definitely a great read!
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Adam Shields
Short Review: this is a classic 20th century missionary story. I first read the comic version of the book in the late 1970s as a child. I am not sure if I have read the full thing before or not. This is worth reading but I read it in tension with The God of the Mundane ( because I also agree with the concept of that book that most of our lives as Christians deal with the day to day and not the miraculous. The difficulty is holding up not normal examples of Ch ...more
Andrew grew up in a poor, but loving family in Holland. Years later found Brother Andrew sneaking behind the Iron Curtain to secretly deliver Bibles to the believers trapped there. Smuggling Bibles isn't without peril and hardships. But Brother Andrew was granted miracles and beautiful friendships with people all over the world that enabled him to spread the message of love to people who were starving for the message.

I read this book years ago and couldn't put it down. So I was delighted with a
NOTE: I originally read this book in a different edition called The Narrow Road in 2012, and wrote the review in 2013. I realized a while back that this is the actual book, and I'm finally getting around to moving my review since I just re-read this last week (last week of July 2015).


I'm giving it the incredible status of Best Homeschool Literature Book Ever. Which is saying a lot, since I've read countless books in the ten years I've been homeschooled. I read this one just last
Kay Johnson
I have always been a sucker for good missionary stories. Although this well-known book has been around for ages, I have never read it until now. I am challenged to think more carefully about what I can do to reach out to the persecuted church around the world. As Brother Andrew says, sometimes the best thing you can do is to just be there.
God's Smuggler is a riveting book. It was hard to put down. It is really inspiring how God changed his life and helped him in his missions and life. Looking back, you can see how he played a small part in brining down the iron curtain, by sharing Christ with those who were forbidden to have access to God's word.
Jaimie Engle
This was by far the BEST non-fiction book I have ever read. It made me reconsider the degree that I believe in miracles. I love God, and always have, but this book showed me how small of a box in which I keep my God. A great read for anyone who is questioning where God is or if he still hears us.
Sanela Tutaris
It starts of not too interesting but it gets better and half way through it gets really moving. I love this man! He is such a miracle! Especially how he gets healed at the end from his back pain--I could hardly believe he is telling us the truth, but God's miracles are still happening.
This is one of the best missionary biographies I have ever read. Brother Andrew smuggles Bibles behind the Iron Curtain. His adventures will astound you. Life-changing.
Wilma  Coate
Excellent read! A story about a missionary to the former Iron Curtain countries, showing courage and faith in God.
Excellent book. Engaging, inspiring, and convicting. This is one of the best I've read.
Fabulous book.Very inspiring!
This is by the authors of The Hiding Place, another book I found only so so. This time it's Brother Andrew, a Dutch former soldier who is converted to Christianity after reading the Bible upon his mother's death. In the aftermath of witnessing the atrocities of war in Indonesia, Andrew shifts course forever by devoting his life to the ministry and spreading the gospel.

There is much to be admired about those whose faith relies solely upon God and miracles to provide. The trouble I had with this
Christopher M.
What an inspiring book this is. I am a man already interested in missions work, but were I not, I believe that the faith of the men portrayed in this book would compel me to more daring acts for God. The faithfulness of God is evident on every page, as Andrew tells story after story of his own journey to and with Christ behind the Iron Curtain of the 1950s and '60s. The book reads like a suspense novel and is difficult to put down, but the stories call the reader to careful reflection, prayer, a ...more
D.I. Telbat
I do not often say that something has changed my life, but the nonfiction book God's Smuggler has changed my life. The man called Brother Andrew (name changed for safety) who lived in Holland before and during the Iron Curtain years, impacted Europe with his faithfulness like no other person I'm aware of.

John and Elizabeth Sherrill's dedication to this carefully written and inspiring story touched my own faith-nerve--to live more by faith from day to day. Brother Andrew's openness to sacrifice
Mike (the Paladin)
Written in 1967 I've heard about this book for a long time and always "meant to get around to it". Well based on a recommendation here that reminded me of it I finally got it (after 46 years) and it was well worth the read.

First off this is a Christian read, know that going in. While it has value as a read about the Cold War era it is told from the point of view of a Christian missionary (and those involved with him.

Now for you who have a knee-jerk bad reaction to the word missionary I can only
Leah Beecher
This was an impulse pick up at my church's library. I have been putting off reading for a few months, but starting flipping though this one. I really enjoying it...not your typical Christian biography...(those of you who went to Christian school and forced to write book reports on missionaries and preachers know what I mean).
This is the biography of Brother Andrew who, without any formal education of theological degree, and backed by no organization or church, went behind the "iron curtain" of
Though this was the second time I read God's Smuggler, it held no less power than the first time and it is still not only one of my favorite books, but one that has influenced me the most. It's certainly a page-turning thriller, so I appreciated the chance to sit down with it a second time and go through it more slowly, soaking in what the Lord taught Brother Andrew through his experiences. And what experiences! The book takes you from Andrew fighting on the side of the Dutch during the Indonesi ...more
Lady Jane
The memoirs of an independent missionary to Communist communities in the days of the Iron Curtain, God's Smuggler chronicles the character development and dashing exploits of Brother Andrew, a man formerly in deep rebellion to God. I find it fascinating that in childhood during WWII, Brother Andrew dreamed of being a spy. His Kingdom calling led him to many similar activities, with close calls and bold moves, as he smuggled Bibles into countries where they were forbidden.

Although the paradigm i
It's easy to see why this has been in print since 1967 and sold over ten million copies. God's Smuggler is the riveting story of a young Dutchman's conversion and subsequent life as a missionary. 'Brother' Andrew -- as he is commonly called by friends and colleagues alike -- began his unusual ministry with a trip to Poland where he learned the importance of being there for his brothers and sisters in Christ who were reassured to discover that their fellow Christians in the West hadn't forgotten ...more
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Andrew van der Bijl (born 11 May 1928 in Sint Pancras, Netherlands), known in English-speaking countries as Brother Andrew, is a Christian missionary famous for his exploits smuggling Bibles to communist countries in the height of the Cold War, a feat that has earned him the nickname "God's smuggler". Brother Andrew studied at the WEC Missionary Training College in Glasgow, Scotland. Brother Andre ...more
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