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50 new Scripture translations completed in 2015

BIBLE SOCIETY NEWS  |  Kaley Payne

Thursday 7 April 2016

Bible translations were completed in 50 languages spoken by nearly 160 million people in 2015 by Bible Societies around the world, according to a new report.

Note: Language figures are as at 31.12.2015. We thank Bible Societies, Wycliffe Global Alliance and other translation agencies for their help in compiling these statistics. The figures for the number of language speakers is based on the best available data which currently totals 6.5 billion, less than the actual world population.

Note: Language figures are as at 31.12.2015. We thank Bible Societies, Wycliffe Global Alliance and other translation agencies for their help in compiling these statistics. The figures for the number of language speakers is based on the best available data which currently totals 6.5 billion, less than the actual world population.

The annual Global Scripture Access Report, which reports on Bible translation progress, was released this week. It says that of the currently 6,887 languages in the world, spoken by over 7.3 billion people, 563 languages (spoken by 5.1 billion people) now have a full Bible and a further 1,334 languages (spoken by 658 million people) have a New Testament.

“This leaves 281 million people with only some portions of the Bible and a further 497 million people with no Scripture translated in their language at all,” the report reads.

In 2015, nearly 33 million people received a new Bible translation in their language for the first time, including 11 communities with their first full Bible. The Kim people of southern Chad were one community who received their first full Bible for the first time.

“Today God speaks our language,” said one joyful recipient at the Kim Bible dedication.

Bible Societies around the world have also made significant progress in publishing Sign Language Bibles. There are over 70 million deaf people worldwide and over 400 unique Sign Languages. Bible Society is part of 14 ongoing projects to increase access to God’s Word among the deaf community.

United Bible Societies head of Global Bible Translation said it was encouraging to see the enormous progress being made in Bible translation.

“This progress inspires us to aim even higher so that the lives of many more individuals and communities are enriched by the transforming power of God’s Word.”

To download the full Global Scripture Access Report, click here.

To find out how Bible Society Australia is supporting translation projects in 2016, click here. 

OR, donate to our current appeal for Bible translation and literacy work in Vietnam! 

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