Let us bring God's Word to all people in their heart language
Posted On: 04/17/2014 | Posted By: TWFTW

A truck full of Maale New Testaments is pushed by the Maale people. An enthusiastic crowd is waiting for God's Word in their own language!

The Maale Dedication of the New Testament.

What will we be doing over Easter?

The bees were playing when Jesus died.

One Ethiopian Bible translation team translated “At the time of day when the bees come out to play, Jesus died.”

People of this particular tribe tell time by events in the natural world. Bee-keeping is one of their main occupations, and so three o’clock in the afternoon to them, is the time when the activity of the bees changes from what seems to be purposeful, work-directed, to seem to be playful. It is the time of day when the bees seem to buzz around the hives, rather than flying directly from and to the hives.

In a sense the whole world was “playing” as Jesus died, oblivious to the greatest work in the history of the world being done in behalf of all people.

This weekend, as we celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus, many people will be “playing”. In countries where the Easter weekend is still honoured by public holidays commemorating the events, many will flock to places of recreation and relaxation. In many countries Easter will pass as an event on the church calendar, with hardly any interruption of business activities.

What will you be doing over Easter?

Let’s take time this weekend to contemplate the greatest event that ever occurred on this earth: The Son of God dying that our sins may be forgiven, and rising from the dead, so that we may be justified. Surely the magnitude and significance of that event warrants our thanksgiving and adoration?

And as we play, let our playing be as Spurgeon once said, “holy inaction and consecrated leisure.”

Véroni Krüger

Posted On: 03/26/2014 | Posted By: TWFTW

Two candidate consultants and their supervisors meeting in India.

One of the greatest needs in Bible translation is for Bible translation consultants. They are the experts who ensure the quality of new translations by comparing them with the original versions of the New and Old Testaments. At present, the most effective Bible translation teams of The Word for the World (TWFTW) are translating on average 10% of the complete Bible per year. The average rate of consultation, on the other hand, is around 4% of the complete Bible per year.

TWFTW works towards relieving this need in various ways, one of which is by making accelerated training of consultants available through a program of academic training combined with internships in consultation. Selected candidates from the pool of trained and experienced Bible translators are admitted to this program. Satisfactory progress academically, and successful completion of an internship with an experienced consultant offers suitable candidates the opportunity to develop into a consultant.

In partnership with the South African Theological Seminary, TWFTW offers a Master’s as well as a PhD to assist candidates as they develop academic foundation and practical skills required by the International Forum of Bible Agencies (FOBAI).   
Posted On: 02/24/2014 | Posted By: TWFTW

According to the 2001 census, the population of this language group (which we cannot mention due to security risks) is just over 1 million. The population is divided into various castes, each enjoying a different social status. The people live in extended families in villages that consist of loosely grouped homes surrounded by farmlands. The main occupation is agriculture, which is supplemented by raising buffaloes, cows, goats and sheep. The principal crops are potatoes and rice.

Some of their beliefs appear to be similar to that of the Jews in the Old Testament. Following the Hindu calendar, on the 14th of the first month of each year, each family slaughters a goat and sprinkles its blood on doorposts. They believe that by doing this, they can ensure that evil spirits will not trouble them. They have an ark, similar to the Ark of the Covenant in the Old Testament. It is a wooden box, covered with silver, containing five precious stones and one stick. They believe that this box represents God’s presence among them.

They consider Christianity as a foreign religion and regard Christians as being untrustworthy. Members of the nation who become Christians are suspected of receiving large amounts of money for becoming Christians. Existing as a tribe and living as a close community facilitates the speedy spreading of any news good or bad.

TWFTW members working in this people group have to exercise great caution. The fact that the region is dominated by the HIndu religion presents great challenges to Christian workers. It happened that in a certain village, some villagers gathered with the intent of attacking our translators. Thankfully, some villagers helped our translators to escape from the situation, thereby preventing the situation from becoming life threatening. This is just one example of a variety of discouraging events. However, it is encouraging that some villagers are open to listening to the Good News

Two translators trained by TWFTW are currently awaiting their graduation upon completion of their training. They are already translating the Bible, most of the time under very difficult circumstances. Progress in the work of translating the full Bible has been as follows:

  • The Gospel of Mark has been published
  • The book of Acts has been approved for accuracy by consultants and is awaiting being printed
  • The translation of several other books is near being completed
  • 25 songs have been written in the local language

Please remember to pray for this people group and the people who are translating the Bible into their language.

Posted On: 01/29/2014 | Posted By: TWFTW


In the southeastern part of Tanzania on the African continent lives a friendly group of people called the Makua. In 1876, the Universities’ Mission to Central Africa, a missionary society from the Anglican Church, sent missionaries to the Makua people making them the first tribe in Southern Tanzania to receive the gospel. Because of missionary efforts, about 65% of the population are Christian. And yet, despite evangelism efforts for almost 140 years, this group of people has never had the Bible in their own language—not one scripture. In 2009, the first ever Gospel of John launched in the Makua language.

Because The Word for the World supports full translations of the Bible in languages that do not have any translated scripture, the Makua now have some books of the Bible completely translated in their own heart language.

With only $35 per month, you will enable a translation family to continue their valuable work in translating the Bible for their own people.

Click here to donate to a Translation Family!

Posted On: 12/23/2013 | Posted By: TWFTW

For The Word for the World, this past year has had its share of ups and downs, victories and disappointments, and in between there were the ongoing labours that we constantly pursue.

We have seen progress in all aspects of our work; we have experienced expansion, and are seeing new opportunities opening up. We have also reaffirmed our vision, and agreed on pursuing the faith goal of being instrumental in completing the translation of the complete Bible in 500 languages by 2050. This is an immense amount of work, but we know that through Christ we can do all things, and that it is His heart for all people to be able to read His Word.

We want to thank you sincerely for your part in all of this. We pray that you will be enormously blessed for your participation in the work of the Kingdom of God.

As we come to the end of the year, and as we celebrate the birth of Jesus with various traditions in many different countries, may we remember the proclamation of the angel to the shepherd:

“I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Savior – yes, the Messiah, the Lord – has been born today!”

Thank you to all The Word for the World’s translators, leaders, and supporters who are helping all people groups to hear those words in their own heart language. May you have a blessed Christmas and New Year.

Posted On: 11/27/2013 | Posted By: TWFTW

During September 30 to October 25, 2013, TWFTW presented training in Shillong, India. The aim was to equip translators with some skills necessary to work more effectively and speedily and to build relationships. 

The students represented 5 languages in which Bible translation projects have started or are envisaged to start. The languages are Bugun, Tutsa, Tagin, Sakachep, Dai.

TWFTW (lecturers, finance, facilitation, marking) partnered with NECTAR (logistics, administration, training facility); TSC (some funding); SAG (lecturer).

Subjects taught were Greek, Paratext, and Discourse Analysis.

Posted On: 09/26/2013 | Posted By: TWFTW
Oct. 11, 2013, (9:30 AM–4:30 PM)

The BT Conference will be held at the International Linguistics Center (GIAL campus) in Dallas, Texas, USA.

This is an opportunity to share experiences learn from one another and seek best practices in training Bible translators in non-Western contexts.

Click here for suggested topics: http://www.gial.edu/images/BT2013/Training%20workshop%20at%20BT2013%20_1_.pdf

Posted On: 09/26/2013 | Posted By: TWFTW
A forum for presentation and discussion of developing theory and practice in Bible translation

The Bible Translation 2013 Conference will be October 11-15, 2013.


Promoting Excellence in Bible Translation

  • Workforce and Training (including project management, cluster projects and other models, developing independent thinking and critical analysis skills, training paradigms, developing consultants, etc.)
  • Bible Translation Theory and Practice (including textual and exegetical issues, factors of genre, key terms, extended metaphors, drafting approaches, etc.)
  • Print and Non-Print Media (including storying, arts and performance, signed languages, scripts, study notes, multi-media, internet and new media, etc.)
  • Engagement and Impact (including host community participation, scripture engagement, acceptability, ethics, contextualization, Scripture selection in the translation process, etc.)
Click here for more:

Posted On: 09/16/2013 | Posted By: TWFTW

Professor Johannes P. Louw

Johannes P. Louw is well-known internationally for his pioneering work in applying linguistic insights to the study of New Testament Greek.  Most well-known of his more than 115 publications is the Greek-English Lexicon Based on Semantic Domains, published by the United Bible Societies in 1988.  Johannes Louw and Eugene A. Nida were co-editors of this monumental work.  This lexicon has become a standard reference work in Bible Translation.

Probably his greatest contribution to the study of New Testament Greek was the development of an exact methodology for the analysis of meaning, not only at the lexical level, but also at the level of the sentence and paragraph and even greater units of discourse.  This has proved to be a great help to Bible translators.  

The Word for the World feels a special link to Professor Louw.  Veroni Kruger had the privilege of lecturing in his department at the University of Pretoria, and he was also the academic supervisor under whom Veroni studied for his doctorate.  Principles learned from him form the basis of TWFTW training program and our approach to translation to this day.  A few months before he passed away, Veroni said to him “Your legacy lives on in the extended work of TWFTW internationally.  We want to honour you for that.”

His widow, Rina Louw, decided to donate a large portion of his library to TWFTW, and we received the books from her in August, in Pretoria.   The books were immediately sent to Ethiopia, India and Tanzania, where TWFTW is developing resource centres for our growing number of candidate consultants in those countries.  This is in line with our focus on empowering nationals to translate the Bible for their own people, and to assume leadership roles in Bible translation in their own cultures.

We are extremely grateful for the donation, and thrilled that the legacy of J. P.  Louw lives on in this manner.

Veroni Kruger and Rina Louw