This excerpt from a news item on online Bible versions, about translating the word “love” into the Cameroon language of Hdi.
Often there are divinely inspired moments of discovery when translating the Bible into a language, particularly for the first time. Such was the case with Hdi, revolving around the verb “dvu,” meaning in essence to love unconditionally. For centuries, this word was known to Hdi speakers, but rarely used. Instead “dva” was used far more often. For example, a man would dva his wife, but his love was conditional based on how useful and faithful she was.
When local Cameroon community leaders, who were part of the Hdi translation committee, realized that dvu best expressed God’s love for them and the kind of love he wanted people to mirror in their lives, it opened their eyes to an entirely new way of experiencing their faith.
“God had encoded the story of His unconditional love right into their language. Properly translated and understood, God’s Word has incredible power to change lives and communities. It can transform the way people relate to God and others, including women, providing an entirely new world view,” added Creson.
It’s a shame that the translators, who apparently were Protestants, probably won’t teach the real meaning of faith as including obedience and faithfulness. Who in the church of God will go to make it clear in that country?