International (MNN) – Many years ago, Darrell Templeton was speaking to a group of Indian pastors and noticed something interesting. They weren’t looking up the Scripture he referenced, or taking notes. His translator explained that most of the pastors there could not read or write.
For the first time, Templeton witnessed a group of people for which written words would do nothing. They were oral learners.
This poses a problem for people trying to share the Gospel in the way that’s become so comfortable to the Western world—with written Scripture. What about those who don’t have a written language, or don’t read or write because it’s not how they function as a society? MegaVoice, the ministry that created the first solar-powered audio Bible for oral learners, is one ministry trying to answer these questions.
Meeting oral learners where they are
Today, Templeton is the VP of Strategic Partnership at MegaVoice. They estimate that, for more than four billion oral learners, audible Scripture is the only way they will hear the Gospel. These individuals may be oral learners by preference, because of cultural implications, or because of the loss of or impairment of sight.
Templeton says the majority of the world cannot read God’s Word and comprehend it. Of the nearly 7,000 spoken languages in the world, Scripture — in whole or in part — is only available in about 3,000 languages.
“That’s where MegaVoice comes in and is able to provide a Bible that they can engage with, even at night in [the] dark or as they’re walking, or even as they’re working, they can be listening to God’s word and understanding it,” Templeton says.
The audio Bible meets oral learners where they’re at, speaking Truth to them in their heart language.
New Tools in the Field
MegaVoice partners with other mission groups who share their vision to equip missionaries and new believers with the accessible Gospel. They are also working constantly to refine the audio Bible device to make it more suitable and helpful in the field.
“That’s the goal of MegaVoice, to work and partner with the missionaries […] to help them get God’s Word into the languages that the people can hear and understand and be able to engage with,” Templeton says.
As part of their ongoing work, MegaVoice has released a line of advanced solar audio players called the Envoy E-Series.
“The Envoy E-Series retains the clean visual style of our ever-popular Envoy S, while offering our ministry partners a powerful suite of new audio features to choose from,” states MegaVoice CEO, Charles Cibene. “Of course, we will continue to offer the Envoy S and S Dual solar players, but the feature-rich E-Series will provide our ministry partners with more ways to reach oral learners than ever before.”
Audio content on each Envoy E-Series devices’ internal memory is tamper-proof. And, the same hard-shell technology built into the Envoy S and S Dual players remains standard fare. Power and volume controls have been repositioned to the player’s side, making room for new feature buttons on the intuitive, navigation keypad.
Depending on a ministry’s communication needs, the Envoy E-Series offers four new devices to choose from:
- Envoy Elite
- Envoy Echo
- Envoy Equip
- Envoy Ember.
Some of the new devices include a recording function, FM Radio, a Flashlight, and a microSD TM card slot for expanded audio memory.
To learn the specifics each device, read the full press release here.
With regards to prayer points, Templeton says, “Probably the biggest need is for Bible translators. There’s over 3,000 languages that have not even a single verse of the Bible in their language. And so, just to pray for the Bible translators, the ministries that are working hard to do that.”
And, you can pray for funds, too. “The needs are just huge. There’s millions of people that would love to have a Bible that they could hear and understand, and so the funds needed just to be able to provide a Bible for pastors and congregations and individuals.”
To learn more about MegaVoice, here’s a great place to start.