This week’s article is by Emily Kopf, an intern at Ethnos360 and Ethnos 360 Bible Institute student.
A New Translation
Not every people group has the privilege of having a Bible in their language. So, when a Bible translation is completed in a new language, it is understandably a time for celebration.
In the case of a certain people group in West Africa, a Bible translation has been in the works for many years. This summer, their New Testament translation was completed, printed and shipped to Africa just in time for the scheduled celebration. This New Testament is only the second Bible translation completed by Ethnos360 in West Africa.
The Bible Dedication
The formal Bible dedication ceremony took place in July, and the Bible translators visited West Africa to celebrate with the people. The translators said, “Preparing for the dedication was stressful to say the least; with the believers being few in number, there was a lot of work to be done. But the Lord brought things together and worked everything out. We had a temporary shelter to erect using sticks, rope and tarps, [but we realized] that our shelter was good as a shade from the sun, but not from the rain.”
The day of the event, more than 300 people came to celebrate, both believers and unbelievers. There were people from the village where the event took place, leaders from other villages and leaders of other religions. Several missionaries, including Joel McMartin, also came to celebrate. All of the visiting leaders as well as those among this people group who had completed the literacy course received Bibles. Pray with us that they will read their Bibles!
Our Amazing God
Joel McMartin shared this story about the dedication: “Here is just a small picture of how God was at work. The night that [I] arrived in the village before the ceremony, it was raining. Now rain might not sound like much, but it sure can make it hard to have a celebration, as there are no indoor [meeting areas]. Just after the ceremony, it poured — and when I say poured, I mean it dumped, all evening, [all] night and the next morning. The one window without rain was when? Yep, right during the time of the ceremony. Just as people started leaving, the rain started to come down. Our God is just amazing!”