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Wycliffe Bible translators
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Wycliffe Bible translators
World News

Milestone reached as the Bible is now translated in more than 700 languages

by Kelly Valencia

The Bible is now fully translated in 704 languages.

That means that approximately six billion people can read the Scripture in their own language, with even more having access to a full New Testament in their first language (1,551 languages). 

Acorrding to Wycliffe Bible Translators, 1,160 languages also have some portions of the Bible translated, up from 1,138 last year.

Executive director of Wycliffe, James Poole, told Premier translation work is vitally important to Christianity.

“You can hear things in your second or your third language - the national language, the language the government use, the language the colonialists use - and it goes into your head, and you can understand so much, but when you hear it in your own language it goes to the heart.”

One in five people are still waiting for the Bible in their own language as there are around 7,360 languages in the world according to Wycliffe.

James Poole added that it would take at least another 15 years to translate the Bible into those unreached languages and emphasised that their work goes further than just translating God’s word for the first time.

“If you think of our English translations, we're always having to update them and revise them and do new ones, because the language itself is changing and our needs are changing. And so alongside getting God's word to people for the first time, we're conscious that some of the work that was done maybe 50 years ago is starting to need updating.

“That really matters because if you don't understand the Bible well - if it's not clear to you - it's really quite hard to live for Christ when you haven't got the help that God intended for you to have in His Word,” Poole explained.

Although the coronavirus pandemic has halted a few translation projects, teams have largely been able to continue working.

The charity is hoping to achieve 95% of the world’s largest groups having the Bible in their most suitable language by 2035.

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