In the region where the stories of the Bible took place, there are 150 language groups that don't have a translated Bible. And in the face of intense persecution, national Bible translators are working hard to reduce that number.
Wycliffe Associates assists people all over the world in the advancement of Bible translation. The organization's president and CEO, Bruce Smith, says he knows of translators who have been killed in the Middle East, but believers remain there.
"It's a dangerous arena in which to either be a Christian or attempt to get Scripture into that arena, but the believers there are unwilling for more generations to die without the truth of Scripture," Smith asserts.
He tells OneNewsNow Wycliffe's strategy is to help the region have access to God's Word sooner rather than later.
"We currently are supporting translations in 99 different languages," Smith reports. "There's another 30 that are ready to start immediately, as soon as we have funding, and the long-term vision is yet for another 81 total languages -- so, 30 plus another 51 that have already been identified and are part of the longer-term plan."
Because of the flourishing of God's Word in this region, Smith sees opportunity to share in making the Middle East completely different than it has been in past decades.