Unsung Heroes Circling the Planet

Ever tried to make yourself at home in a new culture? Everything may be different from your familiar surroundings: the customs, the people, the clothing, the food, the language, the architecture, etc. It can be a very uncomfortable feeling. You feel lost and ignored-cut off from these humans who you’ve never seen. copart

Something’s been going on behind the scenes and it’s blanketing the planet, yet very few have ever heard a word about it. Even some of the most remote and tiny language groups are getting the Bible published in their own dialect. These translators are some of the unsung heroes in Christian world missions today, yet their work is making the all-time world best seller available for the world’s reading enjoyment and benefit.

How does one communicate Christ’s designation of Herod as a fox in a culture in which a “fox” is a homosexual? How does one translate: “Behold, I stand at the door and knock” in a culture that has no doors? How does one explain the Jewish assumption that women with covered faces are prostitutes when for some peoples it is a female sign of deepest respect and modesty? And how does one explain a crucified Savior in a group where male weakness is only looked upon with scorn? woles4d

Bible translation is a meticulously complex process. It encompasses a world filled with such concepts as: collocational clashes, semantic sets, relevance theory, and matched support propositions… But if you learn more your eyes will be opened to the fascinating inner world of the translator. Aluminium schuifpui

This subject is about communication, and the most challenging form of communication is language-to-language in a way that encompasses all the diversity of the cultures involved. Our planet contains myriads of people groups and each differs radically from others. Millions of tough man hours and billions of hard-earned dollars would have been saved if Christians had been content to retain the Bible in only the original Hebrew and Greek and limit its access to a small, select group. But there is a message Christians have been instructed to present to the world, and so individuals have traveled to the most remote crannies of the earth in an attempt to get that news to every patch of humanity. sellersplanet

Is it a tough job? You’d better believe it. Some of these translators live in the harshest conditions imaginable for several decades in order to render a spoken language into written words, then translating the Bible into the language and, finally, teaching the people how to read it. Some believe this is one of the most complex jobs on the planet.  bbcforbes


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