The far-reaching vision of a California church touches two tribes with the Gospel in India.

By March 29, 2006

India (MNN)–This is a story of ministry going full circle in the high reaches of remote India.

Talking Bibles International’s Paul Hoekstra says a special translation project started because of the vision of a church in Escondido, California.

This church sponsored a missionary who was working with a people group in the eastern Himalayas. However, the work with these people was slow. They not only did not have a Bible translation in their mother tongue, they showed themselves to be discouragingly resistant to the Gospel.

While that issue was being addressed, another opportunity presented itself. So, the original project was put aside for a time and the missionary began work with this second people group that was more open to the Gospel.

Hoekstra tells us that after a time, this second group decided to record a Talking Bible in their language, of which there are roughly 4500 speakers.

Someone translated the New Testament into the language, and one of the believers recorded it. Once that project was underway, Hoekstra explains that the people took pride in it and determined to see it through. “They see that their language is being preserved for the future.”

What came next was an unexpected turn of events. He says once the recording was completed and put it into Talking Bibles, the second group decided the units would be “…hand-carried by these believers, and they’ll be placed among families (in the original group) who speak that language.”

Hoekstra says the church that sponsored the project is excited to have helped reach two people groups in the region with the Gospel. “Through these national believers in this small language group, we’re going to be able to reach the people that we’ve been praying to reach. So, we’re seeing equipping people with God’s Word–people who don’t read and write, and yet they can go out and can be very effective witnesses for Christ.”

Please pray that God will bless the Talking Bible Movement so that in every church, believers will respond positively to the challenge to provide non-readers around the world with audio Scripture in their own language.

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