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Literacy and Bible Translation go Hand in Hand

Literacy and Bible Translation go Hand in Hand

For a moment, imagine not having any written books of children’s stories, fables, heroic myths or history in your own language? Imagine the amazing experience of seeing people in your community beginning to learn how to put your own stories, history, narratives into books. Now, imagine seeing the Word of God in your heart language – experiencing God Himself speaking to you through Scripture written in your mother tongue! As long as TWFTW has been doing translation work in partnership with...

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A Trip to Zambia

A Trip to Zambia

Endless savannas, beautiful lakes and friendly people who love the Word of God – these are only a few of the things that describe Zambia. We recently returned from a trip to Zambia where we visited all five of TWFTW’s Bible translation projects (Aushi, Bwile, Ila, Luyana, Nkangala and Soli). While four of the projects are fairly new, a substantial amount of the New Testament already has been translated. The Soli project has a printed New Testament, and the translators are working on the Old...

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Celebrating God’s Call to Women and Mothers

Celebrating God’s Call to Women and Mothers

“There were four clergymen who were discussing the merits of various translations of the Bible. One liked the King James Version best because of its simple, beautiful English. Another liked the Revised Standard Version best because it is more literal and came nearer to the original Hebrew and Greek. Still another liked Moffat's translation because of its up-to-date vocabulary. The fourth minister was silent. When asked to express his opinion, he replied, ‘I like my mother's translation best.’...

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Blessed is the man

Blessed is the man

Blessed is the man who “delights in the law of the Lord, and meditates on it day and night”—Psalm 1:2. In the original Hebrew, I’m told that the word ‘law’ is actually ‘torah,’ which we often use to refer to the first five books of the Bible. However, the term ‘torah’ also can refer broadly to any teaching, instruction, and doctrine. So for us today, the law of the Lord can refer to all of His teaching and doctrine contained in the entire Word of God. What are we to do with His Word? We are to...

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With My Language I Cannot Cross a River

With My Language I Cannot Cross a River

The language our mothers teach us is an integral part of who we are. Countless studies have been documented that prove the strong link between language and identity. You are what you speak. Oral societies who have no access to the joy of reading and writing in their mother tongue are disadvantaged. They often feel inferior to the dominant people groups around them. They cannot communicate using their language outside the borders of their homeland. They cannot cross a river with their language....

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Pray for Light

Pray for Light

All around the world, there are communities using Bible translation as a lamp--the light of the truth of the Bible directed to light their paths--and often, grassroots literacy programs are the wax, oil, and batteries that keep that light shining. "You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they...

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Why not just teach people English?

Why not just teach people English?

(provided by TWFTW, 2019; revised for online publication, 2022) Some might ask, "Why do you invest so much in developing smaller languages? Why don't you instead teach people to become literate in English or the national language?" They argue that there is already so much literature available in dominant languages, or that education systems are already in place with books and teachers. Additionally, the costs and effort involved in developing orthographies and producing literature for speakers...

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What do translators do?

What do translators do?

What do translators do? This seems an easy question--they translate. It follows that Bible translators translate the Bible--but what is translating? Is it like re-telling a story or literal, word-for-word matching between two languages? Is there any room for interpretation? Many people think not, but then, live translation is called interpreting. What about translating poetry, metaphors, parables, and theological texts that might rely on idioms that do not have the same meaning in two...

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We will serve God with His Word in our hand

We will serve God with His Word in our hand

Today, we join the Khatei in celebration! God united this small community of 2,000 people to produce a beautifully clear and deeply understandable Bible in their own language. Last month, the Khatei released and dedicated their New Testament! "Getting this NT Bible is the biggest history in the history of the Khatei community. Things will be become old, the flowers will decay, but the word of God in the Khatei language will remain forever. I am so happy and blessed ... I give all the glory and...

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Totally different than what I had thought before.

Totally different than what I had thought before.

Please, sit a moment and try to hear these voices* from the farthest corners of the world. Each voice tells a story--true, open, and praising God. The stories often start the same, in confusion and darkness: " ...We were worshipping trees, stones, and mountains, and calling them God..." "...we have different secret groves to pay sacrifices to the earth goddess and other goddesses. We were being bound by the blind beliefs of our forefathers..." "...they think Christianity is the bad, foreign...

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