You are on page 1of 8

AUGUST 2010

Empowering Emerging Leaders


Kwame Nkrumah and the next generation
of international Bible translators

 TELLING GOD’S STORY:  PRAYER SEEDS:


Oral Bible translations 6 Join our work in prayer! 8
Words From Roy
As a man seasoned in We are launching a new
spiritual warfare with hard- prayer movement to mobilize
won victories under his belt, even more targeted prayer
the Apostle Paul wanted for people groups and
believers at Ephesus—and their translation projects.
us—to know how to pray We know the enemy is not Enrich Your Bible Experience and
effectively. “Put on all of sitting still, so we are on the
God’s armor so that you advance and increasing our Share It With Others
will be able to stand firm prayer arsenal to win spiritual For 353 million people, the Bible is an empty book.
against all strategies of the battles on every front.
They speak one of 2,200 languages that don’t have
devil.” Paul also stressed
the importance of knowing
In his book The Weapon of even one verse of Scripture. Perhaps equally shocking
Prayer, E. M. Bounds, a man is the fact that although most Americans have access to
God’s Word and explained
of intense prayer, stated the
that prayer was essential in multiple Bibles, 66 percent rarely or never read the Bible.*
need for such prayer when
winning each battle: “Pray
he said, “In doing God’s work That’s why churches across America are taking up
in the Spirit at all times and
there is no substitute for
on every occasion. Stay The Blank Bible Challenge and changing the statistics.
praying. … The life, the vigor,
alert and be persistent in
the motive-power of God’s
your prayers for all believers
everywhere.” he said. (See
work is formed by praying Get Your Church Involved Today!
men [and women].”*
Ephesians 6:10-18, NLT.) Together your church can spend 28 days engaging
Paul’s admonitions ring
Please watch for more with God’s Word in a fresh way. Church members
information about our will go on a Scripture journey from Creation to the Early
loud in our hearts as Seed
new prayer initiatives. We Church when they sign up to receive FREE daily e-mails.
Company staff members join
appreciate your vital prayer
together each day, lifting up Multimedia resources bring Scriptures alive. Discussion
support as together we share
urgent prayer needs, praying points keep people talking, drawing them deeper into
God’s Word with people
for you and other partners,
worldwide. God’s Word. These 15-minute daily e-mails are great for
our national translation
teams and The Seed personal study, family devotions and small groups.
For God’s glory,
Company staff. As we pray
for people groups around
And, together your church can open up a whole new
the world, I am so deeply world for others. By partnering with a local translation
thankful to God that you are team, your church will help a specific people group
praying for them as well. Your receive a first-time Scripture translation. The impact
prayers are paving the way will be eternal as God’s Word transforms lives, churches
for millions of people to hear
spring up and communities begin to thrive.
and understand the Good Roy L. Peterson, President
News of Jesus’ coming. *Center for Bible Engagement

*Edward M. Bounds (1835-1913), American minister and author.


ccel.org/ccel/bounds/weapon.toc.html

Get your church involved! For more


SEEDLINKS, AUGUST 2010—2 information visit blankbible.org
Above and below: Jamaican
translation team members in action.

Translation team members with partners


Susan and David Swafford (right)

OneVerse partners learn about God’s Work in Jamaican Patois project.


“We learned about OneVerse while at a Passion Conference discussed at length how to ensure
in 2007. Shortly after that event, we decided we wanted the accuracy and understandability of
to participate in translating the Bible for others around the the translation of the first two verses
world,” said Susan Swafford. Susan and her husband David in Galatians. Amazed, Susan commented, “How often
have been project partners with the Jamaican Patois project do most people thoroughly study and think about God’s
since 2008, so they decided to visit the translation team. Word in this way?”

Soon after they arrived, they accompanied the translators to Then the group went to a local bus stop where students
Meadowbrook High School in Kingston. The team members waited to begin their afternoon commute. The translators
spoke to the student body during a large assembly and shared their drafts with several people. Susan notes,
shared some Jamaican Scripture verses. “The students “And how cool to begin reading their own language for the
were very receptive,” Susan observed. “I think the majority first time from the Word of God!”
of the students would agree that [Scripture in Patois] was
As David and Susan said good-bye to the team, the
easier for them to understand than what they usually hear
translators gave them two bookmarks containing Jamaican
in English, in church.”
Scripture. But as they interacted with other Jamaicans,
Next, they traveled to the Bible Society of the West Indies the couple gave away their Scripture souvenirs. Now their
headquarters in Kingston, the bustling capital city, where passion for Bible translation is stronger than ever.
the translators work. Project coordinator Bertram gave them
an office tour. He demonstrated the software they use
and showed them the team’s reference resources. “How often do most people thoroughly study and
Bertram also explained how he has divided the work and think about God’s Word in [the way the team does]?”
described their translation procedures. He invited David —Susan Swafford
and Susan to observe the team in action. The translators

Get involved! Go to oneverse.org


to learn more about helping Bertram
translate the Bible for his people.

SEEDLINKS, AUGUST 2010—7


God at Work:
Stories From Around the World
Chief Kotope
Opens the Door
MOZAMBIQUE, AFRICA—
God is changing hearts in
Mozambique among the
Meetto community where many are still wary about
turning to Jesus. Recently, Meetto project personnel
distributed Genesis, Jonah, the Gospel of Mark
and James. When the Muaruwa village chief, Chief
Kotope, received them, he liked the audio cassette
so much that he turned it over each time it finished
to listen again.
Finally he declared, “I like these words that I read in
the book and listen to on the cassette. Therefore, I urge
you to bring the church to my people. I won’t go to church
myself because I belong to another religion. But my
nephews and others will get converted because this
Word is good. We must not be without it!”

“My nephews and others will get converted because this


Word is good. We must not be without it!” —Chief Kotope

Christian Resistance to Sorcery


CAMEROON, AFRICA— Christians. They passionately
The Yambetta people of argued, “That burial ceremony
Cameroon are seeing cultural belongs in the past. People
change with the arrival of portions must put confidence in the
of God’s Word in their language. one Almighty God of our Lord
Jesus Christ!”
An elderly sorcerer requested that
when he died the secret society The significant resistance came
called “Ulumu” bury him. The from believers who had previously
ceremony included rites devoted been members of the Ulumu.
to spirits. The sorcerer’s secret They want to cut ties with their
society did so, but not without previous beliefs since they’ve
protest from some courageous been made new in Christ.

“That burial ceremony belongs in the past. People must


put confidence in the one Almighty God of our Lord Jesus
Christ!” —Courageous Yambetta believers

SEEDLINKS, AUGUST 2010—4


Lem’s Change of Heart
SOUTHEAST ASIA— Each time immoral living. Lem
project advisor John* gave shared later that the
Lem a Scripture portion in his Scripture portions
Kobas mother tongue, John John had given him had saved his
felt like he was throwing God’s life, leading him back to the Lord!
Word into a black hole. But *pseudonym
recently, Lem came to the local
church, confessed his sin and Lem shared later that the Scripture
Useless Epistles? recommitted his life to Christ portions John had given him had saved
SOUTH ASIA— Christians after 20 years of devious, his life, leading him back to the Lord!
in a sensitive South Asia
project had decided the
Epistles were useless.
They were just too hard to
understand in the national
language. But when they
studied the newly translated
book of James in their
mother-tongue language,
they changed their minds.
For the first time, they could
understand the Scripture
passages! Now they’re eager
for more of God’s Word to
be translated.

Read more about these and other projects


around the world at theseedcompany.org

SEEDLINKS, AUGUST 2010—5


Translators teach enthusiastic

Telling God’s Story believers in isolated communities


to share God’s Word by telling
Scripture stories.

Datano* leads a Bible study storytelling that has one day of travel by foot “Tell your children about it in
for 15 men in their remote retained important or motorcycle, a second
the years to come, and let your
region in Southeast Asia. cultural information day’s eight-hour bus
children tell their children.
But only four of them are for generations. These ride, and then a final
Pass the story down from
literate enough to actually storytelling methods day to fly to the capital
read Scripture. In their can be used to quickly city and negotiate the generation to generation.”
eagerness to learn, group communicate Scripture overcrowded transit —Joel 1:3, NLT
members often plead for stories that provide clear system. But for them,
methods that don’t require and applicable truths to the arduous journey was carefully prescribed
them to read. Datano a community in urgent worth the effort. process by which the most
wondered what to do for need of God’s Word. important, significant
At the workshop, Datano
these people of few means aspects of our culture are
So Datano was excited and his colleagues
and little spare time. entrusted to those whose
to travel with his two prepared an initial set of
responsibility it is to pass
Today, The Seed Company friends from a remote, stories in their language.
it on faithfully to the
is helping national mountainous region of They carefully worded the
next generation.”
translators like Datano their island homeland stories, memorized them
pioneer new methods to a recent InStori and learned to retell them Now, before a written
that center on the clear, translation workshop. accurately to teach others. translation would be
accurate and consistent Their trip involved complete, Datano and his
One workshop participant
friends study and learn
noted, “We are an oral
from God’s story. They
culture. We have a
long to tell others the
most important story
The InStori translation
of all.
team’s three-day journey (*pseudonym)
to the translation work-
shops is well worth it.

Partner with us in prayer for the InStori


IG project. Visit theseedcompany.org/
SEEDLINKS, AUGUST 2010—6 project/instori-ig for more information.
Empowering Emerging Leaders
God raises up a new generation of Bible translation leaders

Kwame Nkrumah grew up surrounded by the ancestor idols his shaman father served.
But when he was young, a Kwame testifies, “When I Today Kwame, who is The Seed Company’s
couple started translating the see where I come from—the fluent in nine languages, is National Consultant
Bible for his Ntrubo people son of a witch doctor living just one of many national Training Program equips
in Ghana. Kwame put his in a farming community—I colleagues with whom The men and women to
faith in Jesus and asked the never thought that I’d get this Seed Company works. All qualify as consultants for
translators if he could work position. God found me … Seed Company projects translation projects. Interns
with them full-time. it’s by His grace.” provide training for national develop individual growth
translators. In the course plans that include academic
Above: The Seed of translating Scripture, preparation as well as hands-
Company’s Passaal pastors and teachers learn on apprenticeship. Currently
New Testament more about God’s Word, 39 consultant interns are
project was an early deepening their personal completing their training,
partnership that
ministries. To date, Kwame and nine more plan to begin
national leaders
has served more than 30 before the end of this year.
like Kwame (second
from right) were Bible translation projects
Another facet of equipping
influential in. throughout Ghana.
is The Seed Company’s
The Seed Company comes Facilitators, Advisors,
Left: Kwame is a
passionate advocate alongside high-energy Coaches and Trainers (FACT)
for projects such national Christian leaders program. Through FACT,
as the Avatime New like Kwame to empower experienced mother-tongue
Testament in Ghana. them for the work God has translators learn project
called them to do. (Continued on page 8)

SEEDLINKS, AUGUST 2010—3


Prayer Seeds
Because of your prayers and partnership, God’s Open doors and hearts through Bible
vision for The Seed Company is being fulfilled. Storytelling
Together, we are impacting the lives of more
Ignite a greater appreciation for Scripture
people in more places through the Good News
through The Blank Bible Challenge
of Jesus Christ.
Greatly bless and encourage our investors
Thank you for joining with us in the work of
and prayer partners and their families
the ministry. Please add your prayers to ours as
we ask the Lord to: Deeply impact lives through the newly
published Takuu New Testament
Bless and protect our national consultants,
both those serving and those in training
Raise up additional qualified people to become The earnest prayer of a righteous person has
national translation consultants
great power and produces wonderful results.
James 5:16, NLT

Become a prayer partner for a specific


project or pray daily for special requests
at theseedcompany.org/why-become-a-
prayer-partner

Empowering Emerging Leaders (Continued)


management skills that allow them The Seed Company proactively seeks
to facilitate translation programs and to help equip people like Kwame who
offer peer-coaching for new translators have tremendous leadership ability.
from neighboring language groups. Through partnerships with the local
church like this, God is making it
With 2,200 languages still waiting
possible for those He has called
for God’s Word, there is a dramatic
to serve their people effectively in
shortfall of translation consultants
Bible translation.
and mentors.

Join us! Help build Bible translation


capacity around the world. Learn more about
the efforts among the Avatime of Ghana at
theseedcompany.org/project/avatime-nt

SEEDLINKS, AUGUST 2010—8

God’s Word 3030 Matlock Road, Suite 104, Arlington, Texas 76015-2934 The Seed Company Vision
For Every Language Toll-free: 877-593-7333 • Fax: 817-557-2393 God’s Word transforming lives in
—In This Generation www.theseedcompany.org • A Wycliffe Bible Translators affiliate every language in this generation