Wycliffe Associates, a global Bible translation organization, is set to launch 100 new Bible translations in Borneo, the island where there are 287 languages spoken by its citizens. In Borneo, more than 3 million Dayak people are without the Bible in their own language.
Bruce Smith, President and CEO of Wycliffe Associates, revealed that, “Millions of Dayak people have never seen a Bible in their own language.” He said different groups from the country requested to have the Bible translated for their own people.
Millions of Dayak people have never seen a Bible in their own language. —Bruce Smith, President and CEO of Wycliffe Associates
The Bible in the island was originally in Indonesian language brought by missionaries. Through time, the gospel was shared through word of mouth, but some native people from remote areas hardly spoke Indonesian.
“The Christians in the villages have heard stories from other parts of the country about the incredible transformation that happens where God’s Word becomes available in the heart language of the people,” said Smith.
Smith said the powerful influence of the Bible to warring tribes and groups in conflict made Christian leaders request a translation of the Bible. 100 language groups have already enlisted professional translators to start translating the Bible in their native language.
Wycliffe Associates developed a technology called MAST, or Mobilized Assistance Supporting Translation, which trains mother-tongue translators. Together, translators and the local church make sure that the translation of the Bible is accurate.
Since its launch in 2014, MAST has produced over 1,300 Bible translations. What previously took decades, a Bible translation can now be finished within months. Wycliffe Associates aims to help translate a Bible in every language by 2025.