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WFL infographic - uk edit

A few days ago – or more accurately – a few nights ago, a minister friend announced on social media:

Looks like another long night, just can’t settle. Maybe an all-night prayer session needed! Anyone need prayer?

He couldn’t sleep. Friends responded, praying for him. He offered to make the most of his wakefulness by inviting prayer requests – and fellow insomniacs obliged.

I wasn’t actually awake at the time so I didn’t read all about it until the next day, but had I been, I could have sent him some statistics to pray through.

  • There are nearly 7,000 languages in use around the world
  • 6 billion people speak languages where there is some of the Bible translated or the preliminary work for translation has begun
  • 180 million people, speaking 1,919 languages, don’t have access to God’s word in the language they understand best

Then I could have got him thinking…

What do 180 million people look like?

If you wanted to count to 180 million (and remember, some of those numbers take a lot of saying out loud, like 154,763,972), it would take you just short of a decade. It’s around the population of Pakistan, or three times the population of the UK.

And if he had still been awake, I would have asked him…

How many is 1,919 languages?

Instead of counting all the people, say you wanted to learn to speak their languages. Not fluently of course (you don’t have that much time!), but enough to be able to have some conversation with the speakers. If it takes you a year and a half to learn a language (remember, most of these languages don’t have lesson plans or even a dictionary), you’d learn your last language after 2,878 years. Time to get studying?

And I would have sent him the infographic above for some light relief.

If I’d done all this, he might have fallen asleep quite quickly. And if not and he had prayed through all that… well, prayer for those who don’t have the Bible in their languages has to be better than counting sheep!

Read more about the up to date statistics of Bible translation at The Bible World in Numbers.

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