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Bruce Smith's Language of the Heart

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Don’t “need” God’s Word?

17September, 2018

Bruce Smith

Girl in Papua New Guinea

I’ve been through a riptide of emotions—frustration, heartbreak, then elation, gratitude—I can hardly describe it.

I was in Manila for a Bible translation conference where I met several pastors from Papua New Guinea (PNG). As they told me what they’ve been through, tears burned my eyes.

These are struggling pastors from remote areas where the people have never had the Scriptures in their own heart language. These are dangerous places where tribes are stuck in centuries-old superstitions like ancestor worship, in bondage to witchcraft and black magic and demonic rituals, living under a cloud of confusion.

When tragedy or natural disaster strike, they often blame a rival tribe for placing them under a curse—and they go to war. These are cultures steeped in fear and blood. There’s an absolutely agonizing need for God’s Word.

Yet for their people, Bible translation has never happened.

  • One of these pastors thought his language and his people were too insignificant in the world’s eyes to have a Bible translation—so they had no way to know when translation would happen.
  • Another pastor had no one to help him start Bible translation in his language. He grieved as his people kept waiting.
  • Yet another pastor had actually been told that his language DID NOT NEED Bible translation. In other words: IT WOULD NEVER HAPPEN.

All because Bible translation used to be so difficult, time-consuming, and awkward—requiring Westerners to go into other cultures to live and learn the language, and do the Bible translation work themselves.

But no more.

Now, finally, by God’s grace—thanks to friends like you, empowering our MAST strategy (Mobilized Assistance Supporting Translation)—churches can translate God’s Word THEMSELVES. IMMEDIATELY. Faster than ever before. What once took decades can now be accomplished in just months!

When these pastors heard the news—and I told them that we could provide the tools and technology for them to get started—they ERUPTED with joy! So did I!

They had given up hope. They thought they would live their entire lives without ever seeing a Bible in their own languages. They were absolutely astonished that the work of Bible translation could be put into their hands!

Filled with anticipation, they rushed home to PNG to begin assembling national Bible translation teams.

But they will still need the tools to come from us—the computer tablets, loaded with software, and the training to use it all.

It will take a total of $78,000 to launch Bible translation in 4 languages of Papua New Guinea—I’m hoping we can raise it IN JUST A WEEK—before next Tuesday!

I hope you can help launch these next 4 translation projects in Papua New Guinea—so these tribes will no longer live in confusion and chaos, following ancient rituals of ancestor worship, without the truth of who is God in a language they can understand.

Now, finally, they’ll have the full testimony of the Word, “the whole will of God” (Acts 20:27)—because they will no longer be confined to the Scriptures in a language they don’t understand.

They’ve been so desperate for this for so long! Thank you for helping to give them this incredible gift . . . THIS WEEK!

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As President and CEO of Wycliffe Associates, Dr. Bruce A. Smith has made it his life-long goal to reach as many people as possible with the Gospel through the ministry of Bible translation—affecting hundreds of language groups who still need the Bible translated into their heart language. Bruce and his wife Jan have two daughters, two sons-in-love, and are the proud grandparents of four grandsons.

God's Word in 4 new languages

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