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Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Eddie Arthur thinks Bible translation is important

Eddie Arthur blogs on why he thinks Bible translation is important.


At Wed Mar 08, 02:59:00 PM, Blogger KAT said...

Jesus did not come preaching a typical evangelical Gospel sermon; he came announcing the arrival of the Kingdom of God. (Mark 1:14,15) This is not just the future Kingdom that will be ushered in on Christ’s return, but the present Kingdom demonstrated in the life of his people, the Church. A clear strand of Jesus teaching is that the Kingdom is not just about spiritual salvation, but also about justice and righteousness and a concern for the poor and oppressed. (Luke 4:17,19).


Bible translation is fundamentally a Kingdom activity. As Lamin Sanneh has shown, Bible translation not only gives people access to the Scriptures, it also gives value to communities and helps poor and marginalized peoples to become more developed. The process of language development and literacy increases the educational opportunities for minority groups and helps them to move out of the poverty which so often enslaves them. It is tempting to fall into the modern Evangelical trap of seeing mission as being confined to ‘spiritual’ ministries and to ignore the wider Kingdom agenda in Jesus teaching. To do so is to reduce Bible translation to little more than an effective (if long-winded) method of preaching the Gospel message. A more rounded understanding of Jesus’ message places ‘spiritual work’ in a much broader context and helps us to appreciate the full effect and importance of Bible translation work.

The incarnation of the Son of God on the earth is the central fact of the Christian faith and our primary responsibility is to bear witness to his life, death and resurrection. Our message is not a philosophical system or a religion, but the man, Jesus Christ. The incarnation is not only the heart of our faith; it is also at the heart of Bible translation providing both the possibility of translation and the model for translation.

Just felt like quoting this bit. :)

At Wed Mar 08, 04:50:00 PM, Blogger Wayne Leman said...

Just felt like quoting this bit.

It's good, isn't it?!

At Thu Mar 09, 11:00:00 AM, Blogger KAT said...

It's good, isn't it?!

What could be more encouraging that telling a translator that his or her work is reflective and symbolic of the incarnation of Christ? :)

At Thu Mar 09, 11:41:00 AM, Blogger Wayne Leman said...

What could be more encouraging that telling a translator that his or her work is reflective and symbolic of the incarnation of Christ?


FWIW, I view the original biblical texts as well as translation of them as a kind of incarnation. Christ, the Logos ("Word", but a much richer greek concept than just "word") was incarnation in person. The Bible and translation of it is incarnation of God's message to people.


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