USA (MNN) — Last month, a coalition of Deaf ministries published the world’s first 66-book Bible translation in any sign language. Today, Rob Myers of DOOR International describes another ASL achievement: a 119-passage Chronological Bible Translation.
“The idea behind this approach is to [use] key narrative passages in Scripture,” Myers says.
“Those key passages are critical to understanding how to be saved from sin [and] who we are as people, that we’re made in the image of God.”
The ASL Chronological Bible Translation consists of 119 biblical narratives from Genesis to Revelation. An introduction accompanies each story to give context, and there’s a section providing more information about the passage.
God’s Word in American Sign Language
Until now, U.S. Deaf people were like most of the world’s Deaf communities; they had minimal or no access to God’s Word in their heart sign language. “Of those 350 sign languages [used] around the world, 90-percent don’t have any published Scripture at all,” Myers says.
“It’s not a complete Bible, but it’s a foundational Bible that we can then put into the hands and onto the hands of church planters who are out in the field,” Myers notes.
“The urgency of the Gospel means that we want to have passages ready that are about Jesus and about the reason Jesus came and died and took our place.”
Translators used two different methods to complete the ASL Bibles: book-by-book and the aforementioned chronological Bible translation. Myers explains that one approach is not better than the other; instead, they produce two versions of Scripture with different applications.
The ASLV, completed using the book-by-book method, provides access to every verse and passage. The ASL CBT delivers a solid introduction to the Gospel message for Deaf people who have never learned about Jesus.
“If a Deaf community doesn’t have any background at all, they need key narrative passages to focus on to begin to understand [core concepts:] how do I know God? How do I follow Him, and how do I serve Him?” Myers notes.
Find your place in the story
Praise God for these significant achievements and commit to praying for the work that remains. Use the prompts listed alongside this article to guide your intercession or download a prayer calendar from DOOR here. Myers says, “You can be praying alongside these communities that have been cut off from God’s Word for thousands of years.”
Share this article on your social platforms to help raise awareness. “Getting the word out is critical,” Myers says.
“Many people don’t realize that Deaf people need access to sign language Scripture; they don’t realize that there’s more than one sign language around the world, [and] 90% of sign languages don’t have any published Scripture right now. That slows the Church down from getting behind this important and urgent need.”
Header image is a representative stock photo courtesy of Andrea Piacquadio via Pexels.