International (MNN) — In many countries around the world, Christians face severe persecution for their faith. But much of the time, it’s not governments that are doing it.
Tabitha Price, Vice President of Translation Services for Wycliffe Associates, says, “It’s the villages and the neighborhoods that will persecute believers. We have areas all over the world where the persecution comes from a next-door neighbor, or from a militant group that is trying to wrest power from the current government. There are different forms of persecution that happen throughout the world.”
This applies to Bible translators supported by Wycliffe Associates too, Price says. “In one situation in Southeast Asia, the translators had been persecuted severely by their Buddhist neighbors the whole time they were working on the translation.”
Returning mistreatment with love
That’s not where the story ends. Earlier in the pandemic, these translators couldn’t go to work due to the pandemic. Wycliffe Associates was able to send food them the food they desperately needed.
But the translators didn’t keep this food all to themselves. Price says, “They lined up the village and they passed out bags of rice to everyone in the village. And the ones who have been persecuting them said, ‘Wait a minute, what is going on? Why are you giving us food?’”
“What you’re doing must be a good thing because nobody treats their persecutor like this unless it’s a good thing. So we’re not going to persecute you anymore.”
The translators were allowed to carry on their work, and their neighbors didn’t try to stop them anymore.
Wycliffe Associates supports churches like this around the world as they translate the Bible into the languages of their own congregations. They provide training, tools, and support to 777 church-owned Bibles translations. Read more here.
Pray God will bless these projects despite persecution, and that many would see the love of Christians and be drawn to Christ.
Header image by Free-Photos from Pixabay.