United States (MNN) – The men’s fashion magazine, GQ, recently listed the Bible as one of the top “21 Books You Don’t Have to Read.” That brings up an interesting question. Is the Bible still relevant? If you believe it’s truly the Word of God and transformative, then nothing is more relevant. And as the President of the American Bible Society, Roy Peterson, would argue, everyone needs access to it.
The Bible and Translation
“It wasn’t until our generation that a missiological shift happened, that we realized in order for the earth to be evangelized, we had to translate the Bible for every single language. For them to hear Christ speak to them in their own heart language,” Peterson shares.
“That knowledge has totally shifted and accelerated the missions movement because now we have the information about these people groups. No one ever knew before, how many people groups there were, what language they spoke, what was the best way to reach them. We have all of that at our access now.”
In fact, this is why the Issachar Initiative exists. It’s meant to bring together Bible translators and everyday Christians to finish the task of fulfilling the Great Commission. And it’ll only be fulfilled by reaching all nations with the Gospel.
Advances in Translation
Thanks to today’s technology, the achievement of translating the Bible into all languages is in sight. There are even more ways of sharing the Gospel with others besides ink and paper. God’s Word is being shared through oral stories, listening devices, the JESUS Film, video, and more.
Furthermore, more people are taking ownership of putting the Scriptures into their heart language.
“The minority people groups of the world are stepping up and they’re saying, if you’ll help us, we’ll do our own translation. If you’ll help us, we’ll plant churches and we’ll evangelize,” Peterson explains.
Currently, there are 7,000 living languages in the world. And while many representatives from these language groups have come to the United States over the years, not all the people groups are living in the US. So while it may seem like all ends of the earth have been reached with the Gospel, the truth is, they really haven’t.
You’re Place in Translation
Will you help? Just imagine what could happen if you said yes to God today.
“If Moses had to have the solution for the Red Sea, he would have never left Egypt. He took the first step out of Egypt not knowing how in the world he was going to cross that water with two million people,” Peterson says.
“But he went by faith and God opened the way as he went. And we’ve had that same experience. We don’t know how we’re going to reach these people. But if we take a step and believe God’s with us, the way will open up for us in miraculous ways.”
If you’re not sure where to start, start by praying. Pray for a specific people group that hasn’t yet been reached with God’s Word. Then take the prayers for this specific people group to your pastor and small group. Get others involved in this journey of prayer with you.
After that, start researching information on the people group. Find out their language, their culture, and what needs to be done for the Gospel to be brought to them.