A ‘New’ Bible for New Times

3 February 2016

It’s all change in Myanmar!

In Myanmar (Burma) the first freely elected parliament for 50 years has held its opening session.

It is an exciting time. Hopes are high. New government. New democracy…

For Christians this season of new beginnings holds the prospect of a new Study version of the Burmese Bible due in just over a year’s time!

It was surely no coincidence when Jacob Mung, the publisher and founder of Christian Literature Crusade (CLC) Myanmar, felt prompted around five years ago to start commissioning it…

Jacob is the publisher and project coordinator

Jacob is the publisher and project coordinator

Since 2015, Langham Literature’s Publisher Development Programme has partnered with CLC in financial support for the costly final editorial and formatting stages.

Imagine wanting to read the Bible, but the only version available is in unfamiliar, outdated language. You have no additional helps whatsoever. Not a single cross-reference in the text. Not a footnote. Not a sentence of introduction. Just the biblical text. In old language.

Unless you are in a Christian family, or can find someone to sit with you and explain the text, it would be hard to understand what you are reading. You may give up reading it altogether.

That’s how it is for Burmese Christians. Their most widely-used Bible was translated by Adoniram Judson from Greek and Hebrew almost 200 years ago! It is much loved; but its language needs correcting or updating. Reading it is especially difficult for new believers.

Many Burmese words have obscure meanings unless you know ancient Pali language. In the new Study Bible, spellings and vocabulary have been updated to reflect the latest knowledge. Also, study notes and explanatory ‘helps’ have been written for Burmese people today, and especially to help readers with little or no Christian background.

Jacob recently had to travel to Korea for treatment of a heart condition. It seemed uncertain whether he would ever be able to return to Myanmar. His overriding concern became that God provide someone who could complete the Study Bible project. God answered: Jacob Mung and his family are well and back in Myanmar!

The original Judson Bible was miraculously preserved. It went on to bless the church in Myanmar, and the church grew.

What a privilege to be part of bringing this newly updated and Study version to the Burmese people at this time.

Remember Myanmar: new government, new democracy … new Study Bible!

by Colin MacPherson, Director of Publisher Development, Langham Literature

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