Monday 8 August

Beth Hamil from the NH Media Team brings you a summary of the seminar from Wycliffe Bible Translators, the Bible Society NI and Biblica.

The seminar began with a prayer quoting Psalm 19 reminding us how “The law of the Lord is perfect” and “The precepts of the Lord are right”.

Ricky began his section explaining that Martin Luther’s protests against the church was the catalyst which began the Protestant reformation and led to the reform of the church. Luther disagreed with the church on their view that tradition is more important than scripture. He quotes Paul in Romans 1, “The righteous will live by faith”.

Luther’s protest sparked a reformation among churches in Europe. This caused him to be excommunicated. He then began translating the Bible into German, ultimately risking his life for this. His act of translation brought about other Bible translations, including the King James Version in the English language.

Ricky closed by saying “The word of God is like a lion. You don’t have to defend it, open the cage and let it defend itself.”

Catherine followed, speaking on modern day difficulties in Bible translating. She said less than 10% of languages have complete Bibles. 5.1 billion people have access to Bibles, however 250 million have no access to the Bible in a language they understand.

She showed a video, which talked about how 1 billion people can’t read or write. The United Bible Society runs literacy groups and has materials which help people learn to read and write.

She spoke about her trip to Cambodia and how under 60% of the population were under 25. Some of these people grew up in refugee camps in different countries and concentration camps. The United Bible Society ran classes where they taught these people to read and write. Many of the churches only had 5 or 6 Bibles between the whole congregation.

She finished by quoting Psalm 119 “Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light for my path”, showing the Bible gives hope and inspiration.

Lindsay came next, highlighting how “language evolves over time” and the job of Bible translating is never done. Cultural barriers can also be a problem as other religions and cultures can be offended by Christianity. However, we are on the crest of a new hope making God’s word accessible.

In May, a Bible was released for those with visual and learning difficulties. This gave grown adults a chance to read the Bible for the first time.

Former South Chicago gang members are also being given a way to engage with the Bible through urban music.

She likened the Bible to a telescope. If you look at a telescope, you only see a telescope. However, if you look through it whole worlds open up. The Bible is the same, you look through it to see beyond.

Ricky then closed up, giving a recap of what each person shared and asking the question “Is the lion out of the cage in your life?”