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Cambodian Bible Translation

Beacon Baptist / Gregory N. Barkman
The Truth Network Radio
March 4, 2024 1:00 am

Cambodian Bible Translation

Beacon Baptist / Gregory N. Barkman

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March 4, 2024 1:00 am

Josh Jensen of EMU International presents his ministry in Cambodia.


Before I talk a bit, we have a six minute video that gives a quick overview of our ministry.

Cambodia sits on the Southeast Asian peninsula, nestled between Thailand, Laos, and Vietnam. Our primary ministry in Cambodia is to assist Jirai tribal churches through Bible translation and Bible teaching. In our previous six years of doing translation work, we've completed and published Ruth and Jonah, Matthew, large portions of Genesis and Exodus, and most recently we finished Acts, which is being printed this year. We've nearly completed 1 Timothy and Philemon.

In this next term, we'll be working on Mark, Luke, and Romans before moving on to other New Testament books. Translation is a big job, not just because the Bible has a lot of verses in it, more than 31,000, but because every verse goes through a careful, six-step process of translation. First, our local Jirai translators translate the verse from Khmer, the national Cambodian language, into Jirai, looking at three to five Khmer translations.

Second, I check the verse against the Greek or Hebrew, also looking at other translations in English and Khmer, making revisions for both accuracy and clarity. During this step, I always work with one of our Jirai translators. In the third step, our team of five Jirai translators read the translated text, a chapter at a time, and discuss among themselves problems they find, usually awkward wordings or verses that aren't clear.

They then present their suggested revisions to me, and we work through each problem together. In the fourth step, one or two team members reads the text with Jirai speakers outside of our team to check for comprehension problems. In the fifth step, our translation committee, made up of Jirai church leaders, meets for however many days it takes to read the text together and discuss any questions or suggestions they have. For the sixth and final step, we translate the Jirai text back into English so that an outside consultant can evaluate the text, ask questions to the team and Jirai speakers outside the team, and suggest revisions. Once the consultant check is finished for an entire book, the text is ready for publication.

Along the way, we add cross references, write needed footnotes, and prepare maps as well as adding terms to our glossary, which is printed at the back of each book. Once the book is published, another missionary makes a recording of our translators reading the book out loud to include in our phone app. While mass producing newly translated books of the Bible for reading is a simple process, mass producing students of God's Word is not. We devote significant effort to finding ways to help churches, small groups, and individual Christians actually read, study, and think about the new Jirai translation, being confident that the Spirit of God will use the Word to transform the hearts and lives of His people. The men's, women's, and youth Sunday school groups in our Jirai church are now studying Matthew. Each week they read through a paragraph and discuss the section verse by verse. They are slowly becoming students of the Word. I've written tunes for many Bible verses to help both children and adults memorize God's Word. I meet with a few different Jirai women every week to read the Bible with them. The work is slow, but it's exciting to see the fruit from these reading times as the women start to understand the Word. One extra ministry that we know you've prayed for is our weekly Khmer Bible study on Sunday nights. Over the past four years we've seen two Khmer neighbors choose to follow Christ through baptism, Davi first, and then her nephew, Bao. Besides Sunday nights, they each meet with Josh, or me, to read the Bible every week. People who come in every day, they NOblize this book for every word that comes in.

They think that if signs of typhus were written, they would vehicles give custions. that. Thank you for your prayers and support for us over these last ten years. Please pray for us especially that we would find creative and effective ways to help Jarai people incorporate the newly translated scriptures into their worship, their study, their discipleship, and their evangelism. We are the Jensen's. We are missionaries, though.

I'll try to leave a few minutes for questions at the end. You may think as Bible translators the main thing we do is produce a product, translated Bibles. But really the main thing, our main goal is not to have a product.

Our main goal is people. Pastor said this morning, he talked about the relationship between evangelism and ministry to the saints and Bible translation is about those two things. It's possible to share the gospel without a Bible translation. Paul shared the gospel with lots of people in Greek whose first language was not Greek.

That's entirely possible to do. People understand a gospel presentation better if it includes scripture in the language people grew up speaking. It helps in evangelism. I don't think it's absolutely necessary. It helps in the ministry to the saints. It helps people actually grow in their faith.

Can you imagine growing without eating? You need the word. The word in a language that you don't speak well will help you, but it won't help you as much as the word in the language that you do speak well. Our goal in translation is to see people come to Christ and for people to grow in Christ. I'm going to talk about three people who are in some way or other connected to our ministry and organize my talk to you around these three people because the reason we do this is people, not just a product, however important the product is. If you want to look at these on our table back there, the blue book is our printing of Matthew. We just do this as a photocopy shop. This brown book includes portions of Genesis, Exodus, and then the book of Ruth and the book of Jonah.

I'm hoping in the next couple of weeks the book of Acts will be printed. Okay, so I'm going to talk about first one of our translators. His name is Glan Dua that has a vowel and a consonant that we don't have in English.

He's a farmer like every other Jirai person. He is the pastor of the church that we attend and he's also one of the translators on our team. You see here he's married, he has three children and one is in high school, one has graduated high school and his son is in I think late elementary school.

His wife here has become a friend of my wife's. Dua's wife cannot read and she's like many women. Her age, which would be about our age, most women never went to school and if they read at all they can barely read and Pastor Dua's wife could not read at all and my wife maybe two years ago, October 2022, she started meeting with three of our elders' wives because she saw that their husbands had this ministry in the church but they felt that they either couldn't read or could barely read. She started meeting with them every week and teaching them the Jirai alphabet, which is a very complicated alphabet because it's based on the Khmer alphabet. At a certain point she realized they don't just need to learn how to read, they need to be hearing the Bible itself and so she started reading the Bible with them.

If you were in Amy's Sunday school class this morning then you heard a little bit about that and that ministry, that relationship has really borne a lot of fruit in the lives of the now just two ladies who meet with her. Dua's wife is still not a good reader but she's growing in her faith and we hope that someday she will be able to read to some extent at least. Like I said, Dua is a farmer. Every Jirai person basically lives by farming. They farm, Dua specifically farms, he has cashew, he has rubber, lots of rubber and he farms cassava, which is a kind of potato, it's a tuber and that you plant and harvest, that's a yearly crop.

Most Jirai people at least plant cassava and many have cashews, some have rubber, you have to have some more resources and have been a bit more savvy with your money to have invested in rubber. He's doing fairly well. Other people, he has managed his debt very well, he'll pay off what he owes to the bank probably in the next couple of years.

Many other Jirai people are so badly indebted, I don't see how they could ever pay off their debt, they'll probably lose a lot of their land to the banks. Dua himself, I talked about his wife's education. He's the pastor, he went to first grade about two or three times because when he was a kid, all they had was a first grade teacher in the village and when he finished first grade, there was still just a first grade teacher so he did it again and then eventually there was a second grade teacher, I think he eventually finished third grade and then did some self-study and then once he became a Christian as probably a man in his upper 20s or early 30s, then he began studying the Bible and he's a very intelligent man and can read both Khmer and Jirai and can read the, there's an old Jirai script that's based on the Vietnamese script, he reads that as well and he has, he's a student of the word and he loves, he's one of the few people I've met who actually reads other books. He has, he'll download Christian books on his phone in Khmer and read those, it's quite unusual. He's been the pastor of the church that we attend since about 2017 or 2018. Many of you have prayed for, or did pray for Pastor Jewel who was the previous pastor of the church we attend. He passed away I think in 2000, I think in 2023 but his health deteriorated to the degree that by 2017 or 2018 he couldn't pastor the church anymore. Ngu was one of the elders and there were a few others and they didn't know what to do and by God's grace they kind of floundered and eventually figured out how to, how to lead the church and they had some, we helped them and they had to help from other quarters and the spirit was with them and helped them. He's now probably, I think he's the best Jirai teacher and preacher that I've heard in our province and he's just very clear, very committed to the word and loves to learn about the word. We started attending the church, this church that he leads in probably 2017 as well, right around the time that he started leading and early on when we started attending we met with the elders and leaders of small groups in the church and asked them how we could serve in the church and they had a list of things they wanted us to do including teaching piano lessons, teaching English, so a lot of things we said no to but one thing that we have helped with, Amy has helped out with the children's group quite a bit, not teaching it but helping the teachers and right now something she's begun doing that she'll be working on during furlough is creating a children's curriculum in Jirai, something very simple that the children's teachers can use first in our church and hopefully it could spread to other churches that will be kind of similar to what you're doing in your impact club, it'll start with a catechism question that'll be, some of them are based on the first catechism that you use here, all of our kids have learned that, the ones old enough to, who made you, God made me, what else did God make but adapted for the situation in our church, adding some questions, paring some things down and then teaching lessons that are largely based on the truth that they're learning from that and teaching through major stories in the book of Genesis, so you can pray for Amy as she prepares those lessons and then as we try to train people to use those but we want it to be such that you don't need too much training, we've helped with the men's group and the women's group again not teaching them but Amy helps the ladies teachers get ready for their lessons and I've provided some support to the men's group as they read through the book of Matthew a paragraph at a time, something else we did, I'm very excited about this, before we left, Amy said in the video we really want people to read the Bible, so before we left, I thought I'm gonna make a Bible reading schedule for our church and tell them, kind of guilt them into this, I'm gonna say you're gonna miss us, well if you're gonna miss us, because we're gonna miss you, every day read a chapter of the Bible that we've translated and I looked and saw that five, if you read, not you, them, five days a week, one chapter a day, they can read through everything that we've translated up to this point during the six months that we're gone, so before we left I passed this out to the church, I told them I'm gonna do this and I've kept up so far for the first three weeks and our pastor, Pastor Deux told me that a lot of people in the church are doing this now too, you see this was a very special Sunday, the woman on the left who's kneeling at the front is Deux's mom and she had come forward to receive Christ, this was probably two years ago and she's been a faithful church member ever since and that's unusual, it's unusual for older people to become Christians, older people say well I'm about to die, my parents believed in the spirits, I'm not gonna change, young people if they want to believe that's fine and more young people tend to believe than older people but our church has a small number of older people who've been faithfully believing for a number of years, here's Amy with Deux's mother, our own daughter, one of our children, Mrs. Claire was just baptized a couple of months ago at the church we attended, Pastor Deux was the one who baptized her, that baptism had 12 people who were baptized, 11 Jeri plus Claire, this was a very special day, not just, especially because my daughter got baptized, also because for the first time we used a service order that our translation team had created for baptisms in Jeri churches so they need help knowing how to do their services and so I thought well here's a great chance to inject good theology, good theology of baptism into how they do their baptisms and I wrote out the whole service, even wrote the sermon for whoever wants to preach it and presented it to them as a way they can prepare baptismal candidates because the sermon is basically a summary of what baptism means and then it has the various elements including baptismal vows, the traditional baptismal vows are renouncing Satan and the world and the flesh and committing to turn from sin and trust in Jesus and so that's all incorporated into the baptism service along with the Apostles Creed and the Lord's Prayer.

So that was the first time that was used and just around that time another church had a baptism of about 40 people and they were also using that service booklet so the next thing we plan to do is create a small service booklet for the Lord's Supper and also perhaps create a worship booklet just for ordinary weekly worship to help churches have a little more thoughtfulness about what they're doing when they worship on Sundays because probably nothing in the world matters more than what we do when we get together and worship God on Sundays. Okay so this is the reason I'm telling you all this is because what we do in translating the Bible isn't just sitting at a desk and translating the Bible, there are lots of ways the Bible needs to be used, people need to be reading it, it needs to be part of our worship, people need to be hearing it and it's it's we see I said when I said what are our goals our goals are to assist Jirai churches so our role is as translators and teachers is to help the church do its ministry. Okay so all right where are we so is also one of our translators as I said he's been part of our team since 2017 when we gathered a large group of people did a two-day seminar on principles of translation, did some practice exercises and then from that group we chose a handful of people and asked them to consider joining our translation team and being taking that on as their job so we hired two full-time translators who work five days a week. Dua is one of our three day a week translators and then we have one translator actually she's now four days a week so we have three four and five day a week translators. He's not one of the people who's drafting who's translating from Khmer into Jirai.

His skills aren't as much in drafting a translation his skills are more in the group work where they will evaluate the draft after it comes through me after I've done my exegetical check and revisions based on the Greek and the Hebrew then it goes back to the team and he's an integral part of the team in their work of evaluating that draft figuring out what's going to what works and what doesn't what's clear and what's not and he's also involved in the last step of the process where a consultant is meeting with the team and also in the committee check where a committee of church leaders evaluate the text and give us their feedback. Pray for him he's it takes a lot of courage to lead a village church in a Jirai village if there's a church there's the village church it's not like there are seven denominations if there's more than one church in a village it's because there was a church split not because people have not because of feel not because there's Presbyterians and Baptists and whatever Episcopalians so in our village there's the church we attend and then an itty bitty church that some people got angry years ago and split off and it's kind of floundered ever since. So to lead a church in a village is difficult because it's all your family members and the people that live right around you there's some good things about that but there are real challenges in that too and it makes church discipline very very difficult.

So pray for wisdom and courage for Pastor Dua and for the other Jirai churches church leaders and pray for physical strength he's very busy he's running his farms his wife does a lot of the farm work which is normal and he's at the farm whenever he's not at the translation office and then he has leadership in the church as well there are other elders who are kind of like deacons and kind of like elders who are helping him with that work but a lot of most of the burden of the church falls on him and it's hard it's very hard for him. Let me tell you about someone else his name is Glan Lal notice did you notice his what looks like his first name Glan that's actually his family name or his clan name clan name clan his clan name is clan just like Dua's. So Jirai people have among the Jirai there are seven clans and I wrote these down since I could never remember them all Glan, Seu, Sal, Pui, Kwak, Mam, Chom so every Jirai person is one of those that's their last name or their clan name or first name. So if you have so if you're a clan and someone else is a clan even if you've never met each other you're like family if I were say a Seu and I went to a village I'd never been to before and I said I'm from the Seu clan clan then probably another if there's any Seu's in that village they would be the ones who would feed me and put me up for the night. I think there are possibilities for sharing the gospel in new places because of this clan structure you get your clan name from your mom not from your dad so let's say my wife's maiden name is Sutter let's say that was her clan name then all of our kids would be Sutter's they wouldn't be Jensen's and I would keep mind my clan name when I get married but all of my kids and my wife would be part of a different clan and when there are disputes between clans I would be on one side and they would all be on the other side and that's a problem in the church as you can imagine and people need to understand that that husband and wife are closer than than clan relationships and that the Christian family is closer than any of that it overrides all clan rivalries and disputes and loyalties also you can't marry someone in your clan so that would be considered incest and people married cousins I knew someone who was married to his niece and we were like oh that's creepy that's not creepy for in some cultures it would be really awful to marry someone in your own clan even if you weren't really related and now people don't really marry cousins or nieces because there's a lot of influence from the outside. So this guy Lalo he too is a farmer he's an amputee and he's something I'll explain what this means he's a UNS he lives in the you see him on the right hand side and one of our meetings he lives in the village just about a mile north of our house our house we actually live in a Khmer village so Cambodia the the national people are called Khmer or they say Khmer and then there are a number of minority groups and the Jirai are one of those minority groups the region where we live is most of the people in our region in our it would be called a district are Jirai but the town that we're in is the majority of the people who live in that town are Khmer but right behind our house is a Jirai village I drive on my motorbike about 15 minutes 13 minutes and I'm at another Jirai village where our translation office is this is in our translation office. So this fellow Lalo he lost his arm so you know Cambodia that's the northeast Cambodia were very close to the Vietnam border that was a war zone for a long time before the Khmer Rouge took over then the Khmer Rouge took over and then you had the Vietnam War and we dropped a lot of bombs to try to get the Viet Cong out of that area so there are you can still see craters in our area in Jirai villages there's a church one of the churches we go to occasionally there's a crater right in front of the church a bomb crater US bomb crater and they throw their trash in it anyway this there's also unexploded ordinance sitting around most of it's gone now but one of the things people would do with it when they would find it is try to modify it and then throw it in the water and try to fish with it so he was doing that and it exploded before it got to the water and he lost his his left arm just a couple months ago I knew of someone in a connected to a more remote church who was killed doing this now people still do this sometimes. So this Lo was introduced to me by a pastor in another village Lo's village Tiang village doesn't have a church there was a group of Jirai trying to evangelize that village teaching the gospel from creation to Christ which is the way we try to communicate the gospel in this area because you tell someone Jesus died on the cross for you well who's Jesus he wants to save you from your sin well what sin he's the son of God well who's God there are lots of spirits and so you they need to know who God is and what sin is and the only way to really communicate that well is to give them you know the story from the Old Testament Genesis and Exodus and so that was happening in his village and some people were attending but there really wasn't a lot of interest eventually he professed to be a believer but his wife and his kids rejected the gospel and at some point I think part of the story is one of his kids was sick his wife wanted to do a sacrifice to the spirits and that created a lot of conflict in the family and eventually nobody in the village stuck with it so there's no church in that village but he still has an interest in the gospel one time when I was visiting with him he told me he'd lost his cow just recently so the way he this is would be a normal thing a Jirai person would do he went to the shaman in the village and the shaman has various ways of figuring things out one of them is this long pole and he'll have the person spread their arms out he'll measure the pole against their arms and somehow he knows what's going to happen to the cow based on whether they pull the shorter or longer than the arms these are the kinds of traditional beliefs people have so my contact with lol is that he began helping we would when we translated something we'd get to that fourth step where we do a comprehension check and we go to someone called a UNS that stands for uninitiated native speaker so a native speaker of Jirai who's uninitiated in the sense that they don't know a lot of the Bible so if I read a Bible story to one of you and then asked you questions about it you wouldn't it didn't matter if you understood what I read to you you'd already know the answers because you've you know grown up in church or been saved for five or ten or twenty or thirty years so we need to ask questions of people who don't know a lot but they need to know a little so that when we can read stuff to them and then ask what they understood and make sure we're not miscommunicating something by our translation or using some word that we thought meant one thing but they think means another thing so most of Genesis and Exodus or large portions of it we read to him and then he would answer questions for us in the book of Acts he helped us at the final step of the process where we do that again we do some spot checking so he's been a big help to the team he sort of considers himself a Christian but he really clearly doesn't understand the gospel pray for him he's got a lot of family problems he's in a lot of debt and he needs to be saved he likes working with us though he likes me he likes our team and he's happy when we call him and ask him to help us out with this last person I'm going to tell you about is not Jirai he's Khmer he's our neighbor his name is Mia Bao Mia means gold that's his family name Khmer people don't have clan names there are probably thousands or tens of thousands of last names among Khmer people just like there are among Americans so he is a high schooler he is the son of our landlord so his parents and he and his sisters live in a house that's on the same property as us just a little bit in front of our house and we have known him since he was a little kid so you see him in the back there and that's Becca who's now 14 so that was right about the time that we moved to Cambodia he and other neighbor kids started playing with our kids we started having a bible club for kids which we continued on sunday after every other sunday afternoon we would do it and we did that up until covid at which point we shifted the focus of our sunday ministry but he was one of the kids that attended that and here are some of the other kids who attended and every other week they would hear a bible lesson Amy put quite a number of Khmer bible verses to a song and they would sing those all the time Genesis 1 1 Romans 3 23 Romans 8 28 basically we tried to find verses that gave a kind of overview of the gospel the first commandment you shall have no other gods before me we would hear these buddhist kids who have lots of other gods singing you shall have no other gods before me you know on our property so pal learned all these bible verses and he was but he didn't it was clear he didn't believe sometime at one point he got into an argument with one of our kids over whether buddha or jesus was better and eventually he started attending the kind of worship service or bible study that we have in Khmer at our house on sunday evenings he would attend with his aunt who became a believer about two or three years ago somewhere in that time period he was spending a lot of time with our kids and my wife wanted to be having some influence in his life so she asked him if he wanted to study english with her we don't normally teach english because it's not the focus of our ministry and usually people just learn english and they're not very interested in the gospel but she wanted to have some influence with them so he started coming up and learning english with her once a week and about during that time period something happened he got very angry at our kids and just started being mean and my wife confronted him she says you're being this isn't right um it's not right for you to be angry like this and i'm talking to you about this because i love you and you need to um you need to change and she thought that might be a breaking point for him he might kind of walk away from us but he didn't he kept coming and he things improved in his attitude and he's a very quiet kid but he seems to have um and you should see what he looks like now um since that was when he was a little kid so this is him just a couple months ago at a wedding uh he kept coming and at a some time uh so he started attending this bible study or worship it became a worship service that we have every sunday night in Khmer uh there's at that time there was no Khmer church in our town there kind of isn't still so every every sunday night we sing three or four hymns in Khmer um at that time i was teaching through the firm foundations a curriculum that teaches from creation to christ uh then we taught through the book of ephesians then i'm now teaching through the book of acts we would take prayer requests and pray um at a certain point we started memorizing scripture we all memorized psalm one psalm 23 the lord's prayer um part of romans two part of romans six and we'll we'll recite something from one from that cycle every sunday and now we pray the lord's prayer together every sunday too as part of our service occasionally we'll read the lord's prayer together especially on a communion sunday so his aunt got saved bao's aunt uh two or three years ago she was baptized you saw that in the video and then we started having the lord's supper and then it was really clear who's in and who's out right when you have the lord's supper so you know you have this small group of like 10 people uh and some of them are eating and drinking them some of them aren't and um eventually powell told us that he wanted to be baptized i said you believe he said yeah i said okay i mean he's just he's not very verbal i said when do you want to be baptized he said next year i said okay when next year he said january i said well we need to i need to meet with you for a while he said when you want to start meeting he said we'll start meeting in january so january 2023 last year we started meeting and we worked through a little discipleship booklet and then we worked through romans six then we worked through the apostles creed then we worked through this uh service booklet that i did in dry originally i did it in Khmer uh about the meaning of baptism and he confessed faith in christ and really seemed to understand and so as you saw he was um he um he committed himself to christ and has been baptized so really the focus of our ministry isn't Khmer people but the lord has put us in a Khmer place and has given us some neighbors who have believed and so you can pray for us that we'll be wise and how we minister to them we'd love for them to be part of a Khmer church uh with with a Khmer pastor since i can't devote much time to um to this little group um but there don't seem to be good options at this point so pray for that uh we'd love to see a Khmer church planted in our town and we'd love someone else to do it um so uh pray for pow that uh he'll hold on to his faith that he'll be faithful in worship i got a text from him a couple days ago he said he and his aunt are still worshiping uh together singing uh some songs and uh and um reading the bible she's invited some kids so last week she had a couple kids one of whom has never been allowed to come to our bible study um but apparently his either his mom didn't know or she let him go um do this little worship service with um Nabi our neighbor who's a who's a believer so pray that pow would be faithful in the word and faithful in prayer and uh lord willing he um he is being so and i i worry about him uh but i worry about myself i mean if it weren't for the holy spirit holding on to us we'd all be lost and so uh he's someone that i never would have thought would be saved his aunt is someone i never would have thought would uh come to christ and uh christ drew her to himself and he could hold on to her so pray that he will and pray that they will um persevere to the very end i think we have about five minutes you could ask questions about people you could ask questions about bible translation uh if you want to know about food we eat rice and stuff with the rice um so that's the there's pictures of the food on our table okay any questions you have or about the food if you want questions yes sir what is the largest religion there okay so okay so buddhism is the national religion kamara people to be kamara is to be buddhist um so you don't have to really believe anything you just you go to the temple and do the buddhist stuff some people really seem to believe um and are committed to it but even if you're not if you don't really care what buddha taught you still consider yourself a buddhist because that's what it means to be kamara jirai people are something that's called the jirai tribal group and most of the other tribal groups are um animists which means that they believe that the world and the things in the world around you are inhabited by spirits when those spirits get angry with you then you need to appease them through a sacrifice usually that would be a pig a cow or if it's really angry a buffalo and then you and then when you do a sacrifice you have a big party and invite everybody and you eat the sacrificial meat so you you read first corinthians about don't eat meat sacrifice to idols they don't have idols but they have spirits demons and you don't have to say well how do we apply this is this like rock music no it's like for them it's literally don't eat meat sacrifice to demons um okay so that's that's what jirai people are there was a question yes sir mr so are the jirai church that we attend uh is in a village called saum ganeng village and they have a kind of standard format they'll uh have something they don't call it sunday school they just call it groups there's the men's group the women's group the youth group and the kids group and they'll do some kind of bible study when that's over then worship begins and everybody comes together for worship uh when the preaching starts the kids leave and go to their own program and the uh teens and adults stay um a service will typically have two or three hymns um each group gets up and sings so the men's group actually the men and the women get up and sing a song or two sometimes one in jirai one in kamir the youth group will get up and sing a song in jirai and a song in kamir uh the kids group will get up sometimes two kids groups will get up and sing one or two songs each um everybody's got to sing at the front and um then and there's offering and then there's the uh the sermon so and there's probably in the jirai church we attend i guess about 150 or counting the children as well probably 200 on a good sunday it fluctuates our little kamir service it's just about an hour and there's two baptized people the little boy who's the son of the woman and occasionally one or two other kids will come we've occasionally had visitors but nobody's kept coming anything else any other questions oh the same you had churches all shut down uh i mean it was kind of not because church shut down but it was really nice for us because we could really focus on the translation work we kept the translation office open and we there were no other obligations on our time uh the church we attended the jirai church they split up into small groups and met in people's houses it was a it was a difficult time for the church i had hoped it would be a time of kind of greater intimacy and having smaller groups but it really ended up being very very challenging for people and it was very good when we could start meeting together again we kept having our kamir bible our kamir worship service because only a few people attended um so all in all and then we had like for ourselves since we didn't go to the jirai church we just had family worship at home um there weren't major challenges in terms where we were regulations weren't strict masking wasn't enforced masking wasn't really needed since everybody's kind of far apart from each other uh anyway so it was a um it actually was a good time for focus on our work even though it was a bad time for the world anything else so the five translators are all paid um because they couldn't i mean they couldn't they couldn't do it on a volunteer basis because they're working kind of at when they work it's like eight till four thirty so it's a full day of work and when they're not when they're when they're at the office then they're not at their farm doing farm work so sometimes they'll have to actually hire people to do some of the work that they're not doing at the farm or do less so they're paid at a rate that is comparable to what other people who are say working for non working for organizations or if you're working for a business in cambodia what you might get paid in our area that money does not come from our personal support there's separate funding from a bible translation organization that pays those project expenses so there's five paid people and they get paid based on how many days a week they work and then there's the people who are part of the committee uh we give them a little bit of money to help with gas and because they're giving i mean when they if you check a book like genesis they're there for uh basically a couple weeks so they're giving up a lot of their time at home and on their farm as well so they're not paid like employees but they get a small stipend to help them out because of the time commitment there anything else yeah um so that's the consultant check phase so the project itself we're part of emu international which is the organization my grandfather was the director of and my dad was director of for a lot of years we're not a bible translation organization so the project itself is a project that is run by sil which is um um summer institute of linguistics which has ties with wickliffe and there's another translator on the project another missionary who's actually um part of sil so we use their process they provide the consultant and they're the ones who will approve everything that we translate um before we can publish it so we're working so we have an agreement our mission has an agreement with um with sil as to who does what in the project and what the project will look like but we use their process and we use their consultants so we've been blessed with very good consultants so the consultant will look at our philosophy of translation and then evaluate our translation based on our philosophy not necessarily that person's philosophy so we have a tend to have a our philosophy is uh more equivalence or a um a closer translation than a lot of people are doing um still not as close a translation or what you might call a literal it's not as literal as say the esv um but we do it as as close as we can um and still maintain meaning maybe one more question yes sir great question so that's actually a prayer request uh how to get it into the hands of dry people so you can print a bunch of books and people have to want to read it right um so we tried seminars when we did ruth and jonah we had a seminar and called people from as many churches as we could a few people as representatives taught through the book of ruth had some songs that were based on the book of ruth passed out copies that was just a few pages of ruth and hoped they're going to take this back to their villages to their churches and use this and no i don't think any almost nobody did so we thought when we got to matthew we thought okay let's try something else so with matthew we had this idea that we would go to churches and have a maybe a half day seminar and help people with the alphabet because the alphabet is unfamiliar to some people uh read some stuff with um uh sell copies for maybe 25 cents or 50 cents a piece that didn't work so now our uh focus is on the churches where our translators are members of uh those churches are using the translation more and more as a church uses the translation people in the church want it so now everybody in our church that we attend sound beginning church they carry this to church it's like their bible so uh amy asked uh one of the young ladies who teaches one of our kids jirai asked her do you read your bible she said yeah amy said well what what what have you been reading recently she said three my wife said three she said yeah three well three what and she meant chapter three of matthew um because this is kind of her bible uh so as basically as small groups and pastors are teaching from a book people are gonna want it and uh that's that's i mean that's natural i think and i think that's what's gonna have to happen is that leaders and teachers and churches are gonna have to get on board and start using it since a lot of people just teach from the uh camara translation or from the old translation from vietnam which is hard to understand but that's what they've always used and so this is weird to them once people start using it then they like it and so we see it as kind of a slow we it's gonna take a while as more and more churches hopefully on board um someone actually uh a couple churches told me they wanted the baptism booklet well the baptism booklet uses our translation so things like that i think are gonna help get the translation into churches where our translators aren't part of the church and our hope is i mean we it takes a long time to translate the bible so our hope is by the time the bible is translated people have been using the books that we've been you know photocopying and there will be a good um reading base for the translation at that point thanks for asking pastor i'll turn it back over to you
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-03-12 12:24:00 / 2024-03-12 12:42:51 / 19

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