As a Bible Translation major, you will prepare to go to the far reaches of the earth to bring the words of the Bible to those who haven’t heard them yet and give those people an opportunity to read the Bible's life-giving words in their language.
Translating the Bible into another language is an extremely challenging process that can take many years. Bible translation students will take Greek and Hebrew courses as well as a variety of linguistics courses such as sociolinguistics, articulatory phonetics, and learner-directed second-language acquisition. Students will also have the chance to take classes in intercultural studies such as applied cultural anthropology, intercultural communication and world religions.
These courses, including a foundation of core classes and biblical studies, will prepare students for roles as Bible translators, linguists, literacy workers and language surveyors.
The student will be introduced to the sounds used in spoken languages. The student will be trained to recognize, produce, transcribe, classify and describe words. The student will get intensive practice in using the full International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) for the whole range of sounds used in human speech. Two hours.
Students will learn fundamentals of analyzing the grammatical and morphological structures of languages. The student will gain analytical skills developed through graded problems based on a wide variety of languages. Three hours.
Introduction to language as a social phenomenon dependent on age, gender, social class, status, setting and topic, with special attention to multilingual societies. Two hours.
This course equips the student for success in learner-directed acquisition of language/culture without dependence on formal classroom instruction, especially in little-studied languages with few or no published pedagogical resources. The core of the course is an intensive language practicum (40 to 45 hours), working with a native speaker of a language that is very different from languages the student already knows, in sessions led first by a teaching assistant and later by students. Separate lecture-discussion sessions present the theoretical foundation for the practicum. An understanding of second language acquisition is instilled that combines Sociocultural Theory with the psycholinguistic study of comprehension and production along with a detailed multi-phase strategy for long-term language/culture learning. Three hours.
B.S. in Communication, Ohio University; M.Div., Trinity Evangelical Divinity School; Ph.D. in Biblical Theology (New Testament), Wheaton College
Matt Harmon brings a passion to equip people to encounter Christ through the Scriptures and lead others to do so as well. His research interests include the use of the Old Testament in the New Testament, Biblical Theology, Pauline studies, and the life/ministry/theology of Jonathan Edwards. He served as full-time staff with Campus Crusade for Christ for eight years, doing evangelism and discipleship with college students. He taught courses at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and Wheaton College as well as in the local church. On a regular basis, Harmon also teaches for Campus Crusade for Christ, helping to train staff in interpreting and teaching Scripture. In his spare time, Harmon also teaches training workshops for Bibleworks. He is a member of the Evangelical Theological Society and the Society for Biblical Literature. Harmon and his wife, Kate, have two sons.
B.S. in Urban and Regional Planning, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona; M.Div. in Biblical Languages, Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary; Ph.D. in Theological Studies (Old Testament), Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
Tiberius Rata came to Grace Theological Seminary from Beeson Divinity School in Birmingham, Alabama, where he served as assistant professor of divinity. Before that, he taught at Trinity International University in Deerfield, Illinois, and Emmanuel Baptist University in Oradea, Romania. He has also pastored churches in California and Alabama and served as an interim pastor in Michigan and Indiana. He is a member of the Evangelical Theological Society and the Institute for Biblical Research and has presented papers at the national conventions of the Evangelical Theological Society. Rata is chair of the undergraduate Department of Biblical Studies. He and his wife, Carmen, have two sons.
Bible translation has a rich and lengthy history. Each version is translated from the Bible's original languages: Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic. During the Middle Ages, the Latin Vulgate Bible was prominent in Europe, but it was inaccessible for the common people, as only the clergy were able to read Latin. But when Martin Luther finished translating the Greek New Testament into German, this forever changed the landscape of Bible accessibility for the laity. A Bible translator is part scholar, part missionary and part anthropologist. The main purpose of a Bible translator is to bring the Scriptures to a culture in its mother tongue. In addition to cultural immersion, translators must also have a firm grasp on biblical exegesis and the three biblical languages: Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic.
In general, linguists are the bridge between peoples of different language backgrounds. One of their duties may be to act as an interpreter or translator. A linguist may also translate written material from one language to another, including medical and legal documents, contracts, literary works and brochures.
Literacy workers, also known as reading specialists, provide a valuable service to beginning and emerging readers. These teachers are specially trained in methods that help children improve their reading skills. Literacy workers work closely with classroom teachers to design reading programs and provide resources, and they identify students in need of extra help.
Language surveyors help assure that situational information and preliminary sociolinguistic analysis are available regarding languages and peoples in a particular geographical area. Surveyors work on a team under the direction of an experienced language assessment specialist. Surveyors gather both secondary data from libraries, the internet, journals and linguistic seminars, and primary data through social, linguistic and sociolinguistic research.