‘Village Checking’ the Scriptures

By April 16, 2013

Papua New Guinea (MNN) — Before finishing a big project, many people like to share it with someone to make sure it makes sense. Wycliffe Bible Translators is doing this with the first nine chapters of the Book of Acts in the Nali language.

There are only about 3,500 people who speak the Nali language in Papua New Guinea, and translator Martha Pohonum wanted to make sure this people group would understand and receive the Scriptures. So she did what is called a "Village Check."

Village checking takes place when translation teams test translated Scripture portions on an individual or a group who had no previous exposure to that particular translation.

Questions are asked about the naturalness of the wording and about how understandable are the basic facts and meaning in the wider context of the paragraph or event. From the responses, the translator notes places that may need further adjustment before a translation consultant performs a final review.

The process is extensive, but the translators want to be sure that they have the best translation of the Scriptures possible for the people. Pohonum has reported that after the village check, the Scripture portion was received with great joy!

Pray for God's direction and protection for the team as they continue to test these chapters for comprehension in ten other villages. Ask the Lord to open the spiritual eyes and ears of those hearing the His Word in their own language.

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