India (MNN) — The Mizo people live in Northeast India, near
Burma and Bangladesh. In 1894, they came under the
influence of British missionaries who
created a script based on an adapted Roman script. That led to the spread of education and
literacy with the help of the Christian missionaries.
Once the missionaries taught the
Mizo to read, they had to provide something for them to practice with. They produced tracts, booklets, textbooks, and hymnals. Within four years, the missionary team produced a fairly
extensive Mizo-English dictionary.
Then the work of Bible
translation started. In 1898, the
Gospel of Luke and John were published, with Acts following a year later. By
1917, the New Testament was completed, and re-edited in 1924. This served the church for the next sixty
As the believers grew more in
their faith, they knew they needed the context of the Old Testament to complete
their understanding of God's Word. A
team released the completed Bible during the centenary celebrations in 1994.
Today, there is another need driving the release of a
translation. Mawii Pudaite with Bibles for the World says they were recently in Northeast India to celebrate the
dedication of the first Mizo-English parallel New Testament with Psalms and Proverbs. "This was indeed a dream come true in a
project which is a work of love. We have
been burdened about the spiritual condition of the people, particularly
among the young people."
The project came about as a way
to further India's presence in the global marketplace. "Today's young people are anxious and eager
to learn English in order to do well in their studies in school, and then to
get ahead," Pudaite explains. "We
believe this parallel New Testament with Psalms and Proverbs will be used of
God to cause revival of the reading of God's Word."
Already, the Bible serves as a
textbook for education both in literacy and spiritually. "In all our partnership mission schools in
India, the Bible is part and parcel of the curriculum; we emphasize memorizing
God's Word among the students."
The parallel New Testament came
at a propitious time. "We have received
numerous and all positive response from the Mizo people. In fact, many requests
have come asking us to do the entire Mizo English Parallel Bible. We will be
working on this in the near future."
It's exciting to see where this
will go next. Unfortunately, poverty
keeps many of the students from having their own copy. Pudaite says there's a way to fix that. "This new Mizo English parallel New Testament
with Psalms and Proverbs costs about $10 USD per copy. If any of our listeners would like to present
a copy to a needy student who cannot afford to buy one, this is a wonderful