A Soul-Saving Endeavor!

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Bible translation consultation is a process in which translators and people with advanced training in Biblical languages work together to ensure that new translations convey the meaning of the original as accurately as possible. Earlier this year Joel Brown was part of a consultation team checking the Baiso translation of the New Testament. Nearly three years ago, he had the opportunity to help teach phonetics, phonology and orthography to these very same translators and was privileged to visit a church in the region where the Baiso people live.

The writing system for the Baiso language is still being developed and there are as yet no printed books in the Baiso language. In addition to their work of translating the Bible, the team of four translators have poured themselves into developing a writing system. They are using the Bible portions they have been translating to promote mother tongue literacy in their community.

The Baiso team have completed the final consultation on the New Testament. They will spend the next year proofreading and typesetting the first publication ever to be released in their own language!

“A multi-denominational, community-supported, culture-preserving, soul-saving endeavor – The Baiso New Testament! I feel amazingly blessed to have played even a small part in this monumental achievement. Praise God for what He is doing in Ethiopia!”

Joel Brown – TWFTW, consultant in training

Empowering Consultation

Translating the complete Bible into a language which has never had one is a big project; and like other big projects it takes a team of empowered, skillful, and dedicated practitioners, all operating in different roles and functions. On twftw.org, we talk a lot about our translators—teams of well-trained and Spirit-filled men and women who tirelessly explore the depths of meaning found in the Scriptures and carefully transcribe them into their own heart language--and they really are stars. However, today, we want to take a moment to celebrate our consultants and consultants-in-training.

Describing the role of a translation consultant can be difficult. The job requires extensive knowledge and experience in academic and religious topics like Biblical language and culture, exegesis, cultural anthropology, and textual criticism. The job also requires practical, business skills like project management, conflict resolution, mediation, and mentoring. Also, don’t forget to add in practical and theoretical linguistics. Translation consultants come alongside translation teams, working verse-by-verse through their translations helping solve all types of linguistic, historical, cultural, and theological problems. It is a job that requires diligence in balancing compassion with academic know-how—and results in clear, accurate, and natural translations.

Last year, TWFTW held a Translation Consultant Training event which gave 20 consultants-in-training (CiT’s) the opportunity to enhance their skills and to be placed into our Consultant Growth Plan. Some of the CiT’s are translators being promoted into new roles and some are from outside the organization—all of them are passionate about showing people that God does indeed speak your language!

As an organization, we are thankful for all the consultants, both in and out of TWFTW, who are a part of our team—and we are incredibly excited about the consultants God is raising up into the great calling of empowering mother-tongue speakers to translate the Bible into their own language!

Explore ways to partner with our teams, and get involved with TWFTW!

Joel Brown