After quietly toiling in Africa for most of his adult life as a Bible translator, Iver Larsen wasn’t looking for recognition. But though he doesn’t consider himself a theologian, he was recently named “Theologian of the Year” by the Menihedsfakultet at the Lutheran School of Theology in Aarhus.
It’s quite an honor for Larsen, who left Denmark in 1977 with his wife Alice to begin a career with Wycliffe Bible Translators. Eventually they were able to translate the Scriptures into the “Sabaot” native language in Kenya.
He’s perhaps better known for his work translating the Bible into everyday Danish, producing the hugely popular Bibelen på Hverdagsdansk, or Bible in Everyday Danish. Originally published in 2007, it’s now available to read online, as well.
According to Jørgen Jørgensen from the School of Theology, Larsen is someone who has lived “a quiet, inconspicuous life, but who is an expert in his field.” His work, he added, “is theology at its best: a tool to unlock God’s wisdom, one that makes it accessible for ordinary people.”
Today you'll find Bibelen på Hverdagsdansk in churches all across Denmark, and Larsen’s faithfulness has made it possible for new generations of Danes to understand and learn from God’s Word. And although he retired last year, he’s still keeping up with translation projects in Kenya by way of Skype and email, mentoring workers and passing along his decades of experience.
THANK GOD for the quiet but influential work of Iver Larsen, and for his continued influence on Bible translation efforts.
PRAY that God would continue to reach new generations in Denmark with his truth through this modern Danish translation.
PRAY ALSO that Danes of all ages who don’t yet follow Christ would encounter Bibelen på Hverdagsdansk… even in the most unexpected of places.
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