¡Saludos! (“Greetings” in Spanish.)
I recall about 17 years ago, on one of my speaking trips from my homeland of Australia to the U.S., I visited Mexico for the first time. I vividly remember my shock at seeing the back streets of Tijuana. My heart went out to these people, whose standard of living was so low. I wondered: “Have they access to Bibles—and have they heard the gospel?”
Since then, I have visited many countries. Indeed, the Tower of Babel has caused challenges in communication today. But I remembered what Jesus said: “Teach all nations … to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you” (Matthew 28).
“All things” includes the foundational book of Genesis—the true history of the universe. And “all nations” means every language group.
I also have found (no matter what country) that almost all schools teach Darwinism/evolution as fact—just as they do in America. To communicate “all things” to “all nations”, we have to deal with the barriers of evolution which keep people from being receptive to the gospel.
As you may know, we do have an active translation ministry at AiG. Many of our books have been (and are being) translated into a number of languages. Also, we have AiG websites in seven languages.
The Lord has now laid on our hearts an even greater burden to intensify our efforts to reach those whose language is the second most widely spoken language in the world, i.e., Spanish. Did you know that there are an estimated 30 million Hispanic people in America? In all, there are about 335 million people worldwide who speak Spanish.
We have already seen how effective our resources have been in the English-speaking world. People use our literature and tapes as witnessing tools—many have been won to the Lord, and many Christians are “on fire.”
We have just taken a number of giant leaps in reaching Spanish speakers in America and elsewhere:
Of course, in our translations we have to be sensitive to cultural differences. You see, I had an embarrassing moment in Japan a couple of years ago:
My translator said to me, “Remember when the people laughed at that joke you told?” “Yes,” I replied, “they really liked that one, didn’t they?” The translator said, “Well, they wouldn’t have understood that joke at all—in their culture it doesn’t mean anything to them.”
“Why did they laugh then?” I asked. The translator smiled and said, “I told them that Mr. Ham had told a joke and they should laugh—and they did!”
Amidst all of the other outreaches AiG is involved in, we do need God’s people to please pray for us as we reach our Spanish-speaking “relatives” with the precious creation/gospel message.
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