(sermon by Sean Allison)
What a refreshing Gospel message given by a guest speaker this morning.
Sean and his family served as missionaries in Cameroon, Africa. He talked about recently completing a translation of the Gospel of Mark into the Makary Kotoko language – a work that took four years to complete.
The question is, “Why translate for a Muslim people?”
The answer is tattooed on his two sons’ arms. Sean told our congregation that he’s not big on tattoos but when he learned what his two sons had gotten tattooed on their arms, his response was, “What could I say?”
Shimu nain so ndo ta ma rogi duma so foigt. M12.21 (not completely correct because of particular letters the English language doesn’t use)
In His name, the nations will put their hope. Matthew 12.21
Sean’s two sons had grown up with words of scripture around their home and his wife had embroidered the above scripture on a piece of material that hung on the wall. He reminded us how important it was to have God’s word in and around us.
He explained that he translates for a Muslim people so that they have an accurate understanding of God. Jesus makes the God of the Bible different than the god in the Koran. The Bible doesn’t shy away from sin. Other religions acknowledge the problem but call it different names and each religion seeks an answer to the problem. But the Bible is clear.
Romans 3.23 For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
Psalm 14.3b There is no one who does good, not even one.
Romans 6.23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
The good news? Jesus is the Hope.
Romans 5.8 But God demonstrates his love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
2 Corinthians 5.21 God made him who had no sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
John 3.16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
We no longer have to pay the wages of our sin.
This world tells us that co-existing is the hope of the world – we would rather teach inclusion but the scriptures tell us differently.
Acts 4.12 Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.
John 14.6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
So, why translate for a Muslim people?
Because Jesus is the hope of all the world – the answer to all peoples’ sin problem. His death changed eternity. He rose and conquered death. We can rise and live with Him without end.
Jesus says, “Come unto me” and “Go and make disciples of all nations” – so that every language has the Word of God in their hands.