Is Christianity a Western Religion? 5:The Bible Across the World

Is Christianity a Western Religion? Isn’t it written in Greek and translated into English?

The Bible has been translated into more languages than any other book. This reveals three things:

1)the capacity of all cultures to encounter this religion in a meaningful way that reaches them as they are;

2) the more persistent spread of a religion on its own terms, in spite of the colonialism that would rip a nation’s own tongue away and have it speak English or, say, some other colonial language, in order to interpret a religious text on an empire’s terms;

3) The ability for a message rendered in an indigenous tongue to spur social and spiritual change by using the peoples’ own language.

The Bible is the most translated book in the world. The book itself does not demand that it only be read in Greek, Hebrew, Aramaic, or even English. It does not conform itself to Western language in order to be received and understood. The Old Testament was originally written in Hebrew (a language of the Levant), and the New Testament, in Greek, was written in the lingua franca of its time. It is now the most translated book, and countless copies are circulated and memorized around the globe. All this and more speaks of the message’s inherent ability to be received by cultures both East and West.

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