Scripture Resources in Many Languages
“My grandma mostly speaks Hakka! How can I share verses from the Bible with her?” Have you ever felt helpless when trying to share scripture with those who have difficulty understanding a majority language like English or Mandarin?
We know that the word of God has much greater impact on a person if he hears it in his ‘heart language’. For evangelism, and especially for discipleship, the word of God is best communicated in a language that resonates with a person’s heart. It is not just the elderly who may need to hear the scripture in a minority language; many immigrants who live and work in Singapore are more comfortable in their native languages.
There is good news! Over the years, Bible translators have been working to make scripture available in more languages – over 3,400 languages to date. The extent of scripture in each language varies – it could be a complete Bible, or a New Testament, or just selected scripture portions or stories. Many projects are still in progress now, or waiting to begin.
In the past, these translations were only available in printed form. But now, audio and/or video recordings of scripture are also available in many languages and accessible online or via mobile apps. Sign language bibles in video formats are also available.
Just as examples, here are the search results from ScriptureEarth for Hakka and Telugu:
So if you are seeking scripture resources in a particular language, try one of these sites below!
ScriptureEarth is a search site which aims to provide access to Scripture products for the languages of the world. It provides links to text, video, audio, PDFs, mobile apps, and also links to purchase printed Bibles and other resources. It is managed by SIL International.
Find-a-Bible aims to simplify the search for Bibles and Bible resources in every language. It lists major sources of Scripture in many languages and multiple formats. It is a collaborative project of the Forum of Bible Agencies International (FOBAI) and is designed and maintained by the Digital Bible Society (DBS).
Bible.is, a ministry of Faith Comes By Hearing, combines Scripture text with audio recordings in over 1,500 languages. Faith Comes By Hearing has partnered Bible translation organisations to make God’s Word accessible online or via a mobile app.
LUMO provides video dramatisations of the four Gospels with narration of the full Gospel text in various languages. Faith Comes By Hearing is dubbing these into hundreds of languages which are available on Bible.is.
Languages of Singapore
Do you know how many languages are spoken in Singapore? Besides the four official languages of English, Mandarin, Malay and Tamil, just walking through any busy marketplace will show you that many other languages are spoken here.
Traditionally, ethnic groups in Singapore have been divided into four larger groupings: Chinese, Malay, Indian, and a catch-all Others. However, each of these actually comprises many language groups. For example:
There are also languages that are indigenous to Singapore and Malaysia such as Singlish, Baba (or Peranakan) Malay, and Kristang.