Africa Bible Commentary Has Wings!

By Isobel Stevenson, Langham Literature

Langham played a large part in the production of the 1,600 page Africa Bible Commentary that was launched with great fanfare in 2006. What has happened to it since then? A lot! It is not just flying off the shelves but around the world.

More than 130,000 copies are now in print, in four languages: English, French, Portuguese and Swahili. A translation in Malagasy is due out this year, a translation into Amharic is half-completed, and a translation into Hausa has just begun. Almost all of the translation work has been done in Africa, at the request of African scholars. The book is clearly meeting a need! But translation is expensive. Paying for it has consumed almost all the royalties from the sales of the commentary. So there may be fewer new translations in future.

The commentary is also being used around the world, and not just in Africa. A 5-star review of the book on the website comes from Bangkok. Many others come from the USA. But the most unexpected sighting so far is a rather startling photo taken last month at the Langham Preaching Seminar in Papua New Guinea (7600 miles away from Nairobi, on the other side of the world). It shows all the participants proudly clutching the books they were given at the seminar – and one of them is clearly the Africa Bible Commentary. Similarly the commentary has been enthusiastically received further into the Pacific as indicated by the photos from the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu Langham Preaching training.

We need to pray that all the similar one-volume commentaries now being written (in South Asia, Latin America, the Arab world and the Slavic world) will bring equal blessing to the writers, the readers, and believers worldwide.

Papua New Guinea 2011 Solomon Islands 2011 Vanuatu 2010

[Click on image to see full size photo]