“We don’t have words for things like “lampstand” and all the different metals and clothes,” Kossac explained with a grin. “It was hard work trying to translate those concepts so our community would understand!”
Kossac, Tuas, and James, three of the Kamano-Kafe translators, were gathered together, reflecting on the challenges of translating the book of Exodus into their language.
“We had to look at a lot of pictures and do research to understand the [Jewish] customs,” he continued. “We’d been praying hard that God would give us wisdom about how to translate it all correctly. But, all the talk in the Bible about the animals and how to use them for sacrifices – that was easy to translate! It directly parallels our own culture where we prepare food for our feast celebrations!”
In addition to finishing the translation of Exodus, the team spent three intensive weeks polishing an audio-recording of the book, to be distributed on hand-held audio players throughout the villages. These Audibibles create a critical link between the traditional oral culture of the Kamano-Kafe and the written Word of God.
Tuas, who was the voice of Moses, greatly appreciated the fact that his time spent translating Exodus has helped him as a pastor. “Now, when I want to talk about Exodus, the story is in my mind! I know it so well, I can just tell about it off the top of my head.”
“The book of Exodus is a good book,” he said, “It’s similar to the story of Jesus coming to earth as our Savior. It creates a bridge, a parallel…and so it’s our goal as a team that this book will help our people understand Jesus.”