Foreign Bibles

Written by Jeremy Horelick
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Even though the original Bible was pieced together over the course of 1500 years and included portions of Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic, foreign Bibles of every conceivable origin have descended from them. Even if Abraham, Moses, David, and Jesus never spoke German or Khmer, that doesn't mean you can't study their words and deeds in those languages. The Bible is the single most read and translated work in the world. A glimpse at the numbers backs this assertion.

A study commissioned by the United Bible Societies recently concluded that portions of the Bible have been translated into 2197 languages. Mind you, this does not count complete translations, but texts containing one or more books from the scriptures. Ten years ago, this figure hovered around 2000 languages, further proof that the book's popularity is growing by the day.

Types of Foreign Bibles

As you might expect, Chinese Bibles lead the pack when it comes to foreign translations. China is home to some 50 minorities, each with its own language. In addition, there are roughly 1500 Chinese dialects to factor in. As parts of the formerly Communist Far East continue their trend toward democratization (and, as a result, free speech), more and more versions of Chinese Bibles are becoming available.

Foreign Bibles are readily available all throughout Western Europe in countries such as France, Italy, and Spain, but how about more exotic locales? You can also buy Tagalog-Philippine Bibles, Haitian Bibles, Serbian Bibles, and Navejo Bibles, just to name a few. While these countries may differ in their ethnic and religious legacies, their Bible products remain remarkably similar, for they all tell a similar story of humankind's relationship with God.

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