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Roger Stone, Philippines
When will the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace become “complete” among the Ayta people? We might think that once there are churches in the area the task is complete. But what if the churches are made up of people who don’t really understand what the good news is? We might think that once there are indigenous pastors the task is complete. But what if those pastors frequently misunderstand the message of the New Testament because it has not yet been clearly translated into their language?
It seems like Paul is standing right here talking to us.
On other days during the team’s devotions, I have seen further glimpses of completion. One example is when committee members started quoting verses they have drafted throughout the New Testament, recognizing how verses from different books relate to each other. While I tend to think the Scriptures aren’t complete until they all have been checked, approved and published, it seems the Holy Spirit has already started the process of making the 27 books of the New Testament into a “whole” in their minds. So, while we strive to “complete” the humanly measurable task of translating the New Testament into Ayta languages, the Holy Spirit works to bring about complete understanding in the minds and hearts of those for whom it is translated.
When the message of the New Testament is understandable to the majority of the Aytas, Vangie’s and my mission will be “complete,” but the Holy Spirit’s job will not be complete as the process of revealing truth through His Word to the hearts and minds of Ayta will go on for eternity.
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