Siawi close to having New Testament

By September 26, 2011

Papua New Guinea (MNN/NTM) — The Siawi Bible translation team and New Tribes Mission missionary Linda Krieg are two steps closer to the day the entire New Testament will be assembled and printed in one book.

Krieg, 66, has been part of the missionary team to the Siawis since 1986. That's the year the Siawis, an unreached people group, invited New Tribes Mission to begin planting a church among them.

Tom Brendle and his family served among the Siawi in Papua New Guinea with New Tribes for 11 years. "When we first started out, the people didn't have any Scripture translated into their language. In fact, their language wasn't even written down when missionaries first moved in."

Krieg will remain with the Siawi, even after Siawi church leaders have been ordained and the other missionaries have moved out. That's because Krieg is still translating God's Word into the Siawi language. So far, she's completed 76% of the New Testament translation.

In August, 2 Corinthians was checked and approved for publication, with a few final corrections. It will be printed as a separate booklet, as others books have been, so that it will be available to the Siawi believers even as they await a complete New Testament.

Now the Bible translators have turned their attention to the book of John. Specifically, they are doing comprehension checking of the draft translation. Comprehension checking ensures that the translation clearly conveys to the Siawis all that is wrapped up in each verse and points to passages or verses that need more work.

"As we work our way through John, as in all the other books we've done, we are constantly being blessed by the nuggets of precious truths," Krieg said.

Brendle says this is good news because the 350 people in the village are hungry for God's Word. He says as the translation project has finished each book, "We print each one of those portions in a book and give it to the people. And when they come to church, they bring a whole bag full of individual books of the New Testament."

According to Brendle, the Siawi are not only reading God's Word, but they're being doers of the Word. "In fact, this Spring the Siawi church appointed three men and their families to be missionaries — to go and reach out to a neighboring language group.

With 2 Corinthians completed and John well under way, the Siawi New Testament is now 76 percent complete.

While this project is completely funded, News Tribes is asking people to help with another project nearly funded. The Mwinika translation of Mozambique could use your support. Click here to help.

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