Translating the Bible

— By Mark Avery, Editor, Herald and Banner Press, Overland Park, KS

Someone told of a group of Bible college students discussing the merits of various Bible translations. Each told which was his favorite and listed some reasons for his choice. Finally the last student spoke. “My favorite translation of the Bible is my mother’s translation.”

The other students were taken aback. “Your mother translated the Bible?” they wondered incredulously.

“Yes,” came the simple response. “She translated it into everyday living.” If the Bible is the Word of God, and we believe that it is, we should put every effort into practicing it in our lives.

Some simple steps can be taken to translate the Bible into everyday living. Reading the Bible is necessary to this translation. Some believers seem to think that they get enough of the Bible through preaching services and Sunday school classes. In reality, the Bible is the means God often uses to speak to us to conform us to His will. Daily contact with Him through His Word helps us develop a deep, intimate relationship with Him. We gain spiritual strength and stamina from the Word that enables us to live holy lives from day to day.

Praying is necessary to translating the Bible into life. Being a God-inspired book, the Bible becomes much easier for us to understand as we allow the Holy Spirit to work in our hearts. We talk to God in prayer, and He talks to us through His Word. A close communion develops as we communicate with each other.

Meditation is necessary to translating the Bible into life. Regardless of how many times a person has read the Bible, from time to time a verse or passage seems to “jump off the page” at us. Of course, that does not happen literally. Yet having read the Bible several times, I still discover “new” messages tucked away in its pages just for me. The written Word of God is still the living Word of God. It does not change, but it opens to us in various circumstances to help us know how to become more like Christ.

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