Saturday, December 30, 2023

A new Danish Bible?

This is no small project. Completion date isn’t set until 2036. And for the Danish church, nothing could be more important than the start of a brand-new Danish-language Bible translation. This project needs our prayers.

And so does the newly formed six-member leadership team. They’re recognized scholars and experts in the Old or New Testament, language, theology, biblical interpretation, or… the list goes on. But success doesn’t depend on their skills alone. 


From left (photo by Bibelselskabet):

Iben Gjesing is an editorial assistant.


Eva Skafte Jensen is a Danish language expert.


Jette Bendixen Rønkilde is a practical theology expert.


Morten Hørning Jensen leads the New Testament translation. 


Søren Holst heads up the Old Testament translation. 


Johannes Baun leads the task as general secretary. 


Keep in mind that this group anticipates working on a new translation for the next decade—actually longer. Perhaps up to 12 years. That tells us something of the enormity of the project. But when they’re done, they will have in hand a contemporary version of the Bible—for churches, evangelism, and personal use. 


Did we mention this is no small task?


“I have sometimes compared the translation project to the temple building in the Old Testament,” said Johannes Baun. “Despite all the differences, both then and now it was about producing something where you can meet God in a significant way. We look forward to using the most talented people for the work. And I want to encourage friends of the Bible Society to take the work into the evening prayers. As it says in the Book of Psalms, ‘If the Lord does not build the house, the builders work in vain.’ ”


PRAY for the steering committee as they meet in the coming year. They need a very large dose of God’s wisdom as they set the direction for this new Bible translation. 


PRAY that truth would prevail in this project. God’s truth, and not the world’s. Pray that fallible human scholarship would give way to God’s Holy Spirit in every aspect of the work.


PRAY that trendy trends would play no part in this new translation, that it would be faithful to God’s word in the original languages, translated into a Danish language that is fully understood by those who will read it. 


PRAY for strength, day after day. This project is a marathon, not a sprint. 


PRAY for the protection of each person working on this Bible translation: Søren, Morten, Jette, Eva, Iben, Johannes, and others. 

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