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You are here: Home  > Faith Alive! | February 2011

Faith Alive! | February 2011

In Faith Alive! this issue:

  • What’s on the web?
  • Ready To Give An Answer?
  • The Bible in our own language
  • Nehemiah (7)
  • The importance of Bible reading
  • What sort of Bible am I reading?
  • The history of the English Bible
  • Chapter three verse sixteen quiz
  • History of the English Bible – crossword
  • South Pacific Youth Conference 2011
  • The Commandments of Christ (16)
  • Taking control (3)
  • UKYC 2011
  • Why does God allow suffering? (3)

A sample article from this edition:

The Bible in our own language

Sic enim dilexit Deus mundum, ut Filium suum unigenitum daret: ut omnis qui credit in eum, non pereat, sed habeat vitam aeternam.

DOES this make sense to you? If you are like most people, probably not. This is John 3 verse 16 in Latin. Possibly the world’s best known and most easily recognised Bible verse yet most people, except for an learned few, would not understand a word if it is written like this.

God’s word, designed to enlighten men and women to His almighty power and purposes hidden behind a barrier of language. The exalted thoughts of the prophets, the beauty and emotions of the Psalms, the wisdom of the proverbs, the power of the life and teaching of Jesus and his apostles clouded by the apparently meaningless collection of unknown words.

Imagine that.

Yet this is how it was for centuries in the English speaking world. Original texts were kept locked away or remained yet to be discovered or were the domain of scholars and intellectuals who lived in ivory towers. Bible translation was forbidden and the only language sanctioned was Latin. Reading the Bible for the ordinary person was not an option. Ordinary people had to listen to what they were told and had no way of checking the facts for themselves. And then came printing and brave individuals who recognised the need for everyone to be able to read the word of God for themselves.

The modern world now has no such barriers to understanding the Bible. The Bible is not just available in English, it is available in over 450 languages (the New Testament in over 1,800 languages) and work is ongoing in around 1,300 more languages.

When you hold the Bible in your hand in your own language – be very grateful indeed and try to make the most of the privilege that is yours – it has not always been this way.

Edward carr – editor


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