Ten Principles Essential to Our Calling as Christians Who Publish

Stan Gundry was recently presented the Kenneth N. Taylor Lifetime Achievement Award by the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association for his 40-plus impactful years in Christian publishing. Stan wrote the “Ten Principles” below for his acceptance speech, noting, “I thought I had an opportunity, indeed a platform and responsibility, to say something I felt was very important.”

  1. As Christians who publish, it is first a ministry, and then a business, but the two cannot be divorced.
  2. Truthfulness and integrity are always the best policy—with our employer, our employees, our authors, and our customers.
  3. Contrary to what all too frequently masquerades as Christian ministry, the end does not justify the means.
  4. Win/Win contracts between author and publisher are always the best contracts.
  5. Publishing an author’s book should be regarded as a stewardship to be faithfully fulfilled.
  6. We as publishers do not always know what is best—sometimes our authors do—and remember, in the final analysis it is the author’s book.
  7. It is not true that just because it sells, it must be ministering to someone.
  8. Ordinary Christians have a hunger for well-written books of real substance, and they will buy them and read them.
  9. Within the bounds of commitment to the final authority of Scripture for Christian faith and practice, there is merit in considering your calling to be a broker of ideas.
  10. As Christians who publish, publishing within the bounds of historic Christian orthodoxy, that is, those truths of doctrine and ethics that Christians have generally agreed on as biblical, will be as important in the future as they have ever been in the past.


Stan N. Gundry is Senior Vice President & Publisher and Editor-in-Chief for HarperCollins Christian Publishing in Grand Rapids, MI. Copyright © Stanley N. Gundry, 2020.


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