It is a joy to share with you the amazing news of the growing number of the two-week Land of the Bible study courses. In fact, the name change from Home for Bible Translators to JCBT happened as the Home for Bible Translators was promoting in the Bible translation world a neglected topic: the significance of studying in and experiencing the Land of the Bible as the context of Biblical text. Familiarity with the land where the Bible was written turns out to be essential to a more comprehensive understanding of its message. These study tours contribute to the quality of the translations.
It was in 2010 that the first academic two-week study tour was launched. Its first participants were high level experienced Bible translation consultants. In the following years the interested of individuals and organizations has steadily grown. Through 2017 over 300 participants have experienced the “Land of the Bible” from a Biblical translation perspective, most being Bible translation consultants.
Now these study program, which are also conducted through the Hebrew University, are sought by major Bible translation societies. In fact, there is special agreement with UBS (2016) alone to provide at least 4 short term programs a year for the next few years in different languages.
In 2017, JCBT has introduced 10 groups of consultants and one CEO group to the land of the Bible. Thus those who carry central responsibility in the work get to personally experience the geography, archaeology, agriculture, flora/fauna, and the seasons of the land. The leaders are surprised by the amount of information and the added depth of the Biblical text after they have experienced the original setting. There is nothing that can be compared to experience of the land of the Bible from the vantage point of one’s own language and culture.
The 2017 short term courses are listed in chronological order from January through November. The high level academic guides were Dr. Halvor, Brian, Dr. Rafi Kassimov, and Inge Vershoor. Sign language groups were organized by Adam Van Goor.
2017 “Land of the Bible” Short-Term Courses
– JCBT: open course for consultants
– United Bible Society: Anglophone Translators from Africa
– Seed Company: SE Asia
– Deaf Missions: Sign Language
– United Bible Society: Development Training of Ph.D. consultants
– Institute of Bible Translation (IBT): Russian-Speaking Translators
– Seed Company: Hebrew Course for Consultants
– United Bible Society: Francophone Translators-West Africa
– United Bible Society: Anglophone CEOs – Land of the Bible
– Deaf Missions: Sign Language Course for Deaf Bible translators
– Summer Institute of Linguistics (SIL): Ethiopian Bible consultants