After nearly four decades, the complete Bible is now available in American Sign Language for the first time ever.
Deaf Missions, a ministry dedicated to communicating “the Gospel of Jesus with Deaf people through their heart language, culture and identity,” began the project in the early 1980s.
In 2016, the mission partnered with Wycliffe USA, American Bible Society, Deaf Bible Society, Deaf Harbor, DOOR International, Pioneer Bible Translators, and Seed Company to complete the project.
The Deaf Bible Society President J.R. Bucklew previously said that “although there are various text translations of the Bible available, some 95% of the world’s deaf population is functionally illiterate. And only 20 of the world’s 400 sign languages have some form of Bible content available.”
The final books needed — Isaiah, Jeremiah and Ezekiel — were completed this fall. Now, the entire Bible is available to the world’s 70 million people who are deaf for free online, through social media, and on a smartphone app. The translation was led by people who themselves are deaf and trained in the biblical languages.
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