Bible Translation and the Church

This is offered as an e-learning course through the SIL e-learning site.

1. Course  introduction

This course considers the history and role of Bible translation in the mission strategy of the Church. It focuses especially on the African church. It explores how Bible translation has contributed to the growth of the church and suggests why it does so. It also deals briefly with the role of culture in Bible translation, sociolinguistics issues in Bible translation and other disciplines that contribute to a Bible translation programme such as linguistic analysis, anthropological studies, literacy and the need to plan.  Finally it looks at what makes up our Bible in a study of the formation of the canon and textual development.

2. Course  content

The history of Bible translation

The role of culture in Bible translation

Sociolinguistic issues in Bible translation

Bible translation programmes

What makes up the Bible

3. Outcomes

Upon completion of the course,the student will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate a knowledge of:
    1. The major phases of Bible translation history from the early church to the present with special emphasis on Africa.
    1. The church’s attitude toward and use of Scripture during various periods of history.
    1. Canon formation and textual issues.
  2. Explain:
    1. The changing approach to translation strategy in relation to culture, sociolinguistics, community and team structures.
    1. The links between linguistic analysis, anthropological research, literacy  and translation and the need for planning in a translation programme.
  3. Demonstrate a conviction of the need for access to and use of the Bible in order for a church to grow.