Australia (MNN) — The Seed Company crossed a new milestone this week as it launched its 800th Bible translation project.
"The 800th language is actually a cluster of languages in Australia. It's called the Arnhem Land Aboriginal Partnership Cluster," says The Seed Company's Pat Andrews.
The sheer number of projects The Seed Company has been able to tackle is magnanimous enough, but the rate at which they're doing it is even more awe-inspiring.
"Just six months ago, we entered into our 700th language. And six months later, we're in number 800," says Andrews. "The pace of our ability to partner and to help people do Bible translation is accelerating and growing, which is pretty exciting."
How is the group able to move so quickly? Andrews says it's through a great deal of partnerships, software, and even through the use of completed projects.
"Specifically in the Arnhem Land project where there are nine Aboriginal languages, they're using related language New Testaments that have already been done to help them do the drafting for their New Testament," Andrews explains. "So they're leveraging work that's already been done. They're using software that's helping them to do that."
With so many resources in hand, Vision 2025 is coming more and more into focus. Vision 2025 is a shared goal by multiple translation ministries to have a translation of the Bible in the works for every language on earth by the year 2025. Progress is speeding up, but there are still 2,000 languages without the Word.
"But of the 2,000 languages, about 1,500 languages have 10,000 speakers or less," notes Andrews. Some of these so-called "least of these" languages have as few as 300 speakers. One language has only 100 speakers.
The Gospel is reaching more people by the day, and with each translation, hundreds more have the written Word available to them in their own language. The Seed Company is working hard to get the Word to every person through local churches, but one significant challenge is getting trainers for the translators.
"For example, in Nigeria, they have a lot of educated Christians there who speak minority languages," says Andrews. "But there's more demand for Scripture than we can give facilitators and trainers to have that work. That's one of our big bottlenecks."
If you have the translation skills to train translators worldwide, consider how you could serve with The Seed Company. Learn more about working with or supporting The Seed Company at www.theseedcompany.org.