View Single Post
Old 04-03-2009, 12:07 PM
Manny Rodriguez Manny Rodriguez is offline
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 76

Originally Posted by Brother Tim View Post
Brother Manny, you use the New Testament missionaries as evidence that the Gospel was put into the language of the people. Is there evidence in the NT that the Scriptures were translated into these many languages?
No there is no evidence that I am aware of in the NT that the Scriptures were translated into the languages that the disciples ministered to the people in at that time. And I've never implicated such.

Of course, the canon of the scriptures had not yet been completed and so Bible translation was not as much as a necessity during the Apostle's time. Besides, most people in those days were versed enough in the cognate languages of Hebrew as well as Greek and Latin that there was not a demand for the scriptures to yet be translated outside of Hebrew, Greek, and Latin during the beginning days of the church.

Originally Posted by Brother Tim View Post
Can a missionary learn and use the language so that communication is possible while at the same time train individuals in the English language? Is it possible that Matthew's way and God's way are not mutually exclusive?
Brother Tim, please don't misunderstand my position. I never said that a Missionary could never teach their people English and therefore bypass the need for a Bible translation in the language of the people they minister to. There are some parts of the world where that may be a viable option. And if that is the most efficient way to reach those particular people with the word of God than I am all for it.

The problem I have with Matthew's way (or Bibleprotector) is that he insists that the Great Commission is to convert all cultures of the world to what he calls an Anglo-phone Protestant culture and thereby force everyone and there mother to learn English. He believes that this method is the fulfillment of verses in the Bible (some of which he has posted throughout this thread). But this is sheer nonsense. He is twisting scripture to promote his private interpretation. And he is out of touch with reality as to ministering to people of a different culture.

There are parts of this world in which they will never learn English. For these people, it would be much more efficient for the Missionary to learn the people's language and minister to them in THEIR language. True God-called Missionaries are many times gifted with the ability to learn the language of the people much faster and more more fluently and effectively. I have had the privilege to rub shoulders with many Missionaries from all over the world who have mastered the language of the people just as intimately as their own language of English. Missionaries CAN learn the language good enough to be able to provide God's pure words into those languages. You would be surprised with how much God can enable and equip a man of whom He has called once that man is fully yielded to the Spirit of God. 1 Tim. 1:12

There is a famous Missionary quote that says something to the effect: "The Bible in the mother tongue is the greatest Missionary. It needs no furlough and is never considered a foreigner."

Which do you believe will leave a more lasting impression and effect? The Missionary/English teacher who teaches a certain group English or the Missionary/Bible translator who provides that same group the word of God in their language? I say the latter because when the English teacher is dead and gone who will continue his "ministry"? But let the word of God loose and it can take of men's souls on its own, with or without the Missionary who translated it.

The example of church history and missions has proven that the latter has left the more lasting effect. How many great English teachers do you know who did a great work for God as opposed to how many great Missionaries who translated the Scriptures and did a great work for God? Bibleprotector tries to bring up Missionaries in the past who endeavored to teach English. Yet it is somewhat humorous that those same Missionaries are men who also translated the Bible into the language of the people they minister to. The efforts to provide God's words into the tongue of the people have outlasted their efforts to teach people English. The reality is that there is no great movement to convert the world to switch to English as Matthew insists there is and/or will be. The reality is that God has and is raising up Missionaries to translate the word of God into other languages. Whole ministries exist for that very cause today.

Again, I'm not saying that teaching people English so that they can simply resort to the KJB can never be a viable option. But the more realistic, efficient, and effective option in MOST cases is simply to provide the people God's words in their tongue. This has always been an important aspect of Mission work and always should be.

Is a Missionary at liberty to simply teach the people English? Sure, he could be. Who knoweth the mind of God for each individual? But even so, I think the time, energy, and resources spent to teach people English could have been spent more efficiently providing them God's words in their own language.

Our God is a multi-faceted God. He cannot be limited nor confined in a box. I'm for whatever way will work the most efficiently and effectively to save men's souls from eternal destruction. And though I do not exclude teaching people English as a viable option, I believe providing them God's words in their language is the better way, in most cases, and the way that matches what we see in the scriptures.

What I find interesting is that many times those who insist that we convert everyone to learn English are those who are not involved with ministering to non-English speaking people and are therefore out of touch with reality with the cultural obstacles that exist. You have never seen a more thankful individual than a native in a foreign land who is given God's words in their language. They will cherish that gift in a way that we spoiled rotten Americans have long since forgotten. (And Bible correctors think WE are the Bibliolaters! They ain't seen nothin.)

I hope I've covered you question, Brother Tim.