‘For thou art great, and doest wondrous things: thou art God alone’, Ps. 86. 10. The Psalmist’s words ring true, as Moriah Ministries gratefully recognizes ten years of God’s faithfulness.
Moriah Ministries is a religious charitable trust which was started in November 2005 as the fruit of the long-term vision of a few earnest brethren from Christian assemblies across Tamil Nadu, South India. In accordance with its simple motto, ‘Good Books for Better Christian Living’, biblically-sound, affordable and high-quality publications are being released in a few Indian languages. The ministry aims to fulfil its vision of developing a desire for Bible study, promoting interest in preaching, and propagating the gospel, as well as inspiring the practice of New Testament principles. By God’s abundant grace, over seventy publications, in two Indian languages have been produced to-date, and Indian evangelists have been provided with Tamil gospel tracts for distribution, free of charge. Besides this, evangelistic and missionary programmes are also supported. These publications have impacted and blessed Christian assemblies across India, especially the large Tamil-speaking Christian populace, from different social strata – a staggering 67.86 million (2012) in south India!
Due to the paucity of original writers in Indian languages, works by English authors have been translated. Tamil translations of ten books by William MacDonald, including his acclaimed Believer’s Bible Commentary (New Testament), have been released as a 2,000-page, hard-cover, three-volume set, and the first of its kind to meet this colossal need. We have been privileged to encourage our brethren to translate many such good English publications into Hindi and another major south Indian language, Telugu.
Tamil literature is also being sent out to Sri Lanka, Singapore, Malaysia and Germany, besides a few other European countries. Three titles are available in Telugu. We have also released books authored by Indian writers in English, and some from a New Zealand missionary to south India. Through these efforts some have trusted Christ as Saviour, while others have understood scriptural truths better. Evangelists too have been encouraged as readers’ responses continue to strengthen and spur us on.
Blessed with a skilled and committed team of translators and editors, the scriptural soundness of the publications and high standards of production are faithfully maintained. Typesetting and cover design too are all done in-house and printed by established printers. Indian editions are also being published, after securing copyright permission, making foreign editions more affordable to the Indian readers. However, the distribution of such publications is limited to India and a few Far East countries – currently twelve titles are available. Printing of a few more titles is in progress.
Moriah Ministries has been privileged to print the Indian edition of the magazine Precious Seed International for three years now. Completely supported by Indian brethren, the current distribution of 1,200 copies across India continues to generate tremendous blessing, as the responses testify. There is also a growing demand for Precious Seed publications and John Ritchie’s commentary series, What the Bible Teaches. The publications are mostly Bible study materials on the ‘Christian life’. A few Family Series booklets have been released in Tamil. Selected Bible Study Charts and aids are available in two Indian languages and also in English. This has awakened great interest from a wide range of Christians. To the best of our knowledge, no other sources currently supply biblical charts in India.
India has been blessed by missionaries like William Carey, Anthony Norris Groves, and C. Frederick Schwarz, in particular, who translated the New Testament into Tamil. Besides preaching the gospel, they produced highly accurate texts, dictionaries, and concordances for many Indian languages, as well as improving the social fabric. Today, over 2,500 New Testament pattern-based assemblies are flourishing, with more than 2,000 full-time evangelists. To honour a few missionaries, particularly those to south India, reprints of some out-of-print books have been completed. Pen Pictures of the Early Church Leaders by Archibald Naismith (who also compiled a Telugu Bible Concordance) is now available and Moriah Ministries initiated The collected writings of J. M. Davies volumes 1 and 2 of the Indian edition of the three-volume set, edited by Mervyn Wishart of Northern Ireland and published by Scripture Teaching Library (UK). The final third volume is in the pipeline.
Due to the huge lack of reasonably priced Bibles, gospel literature and Bible study books, there is a burden to publish well-illustrated children’s books and illustrated Bible study materials, more titles on missions and evangelization, as well as a burden to bring out a study Bible in Tamil. However, the critical requirement is for responsible brethren to direct the everyday operations of this valuable ministry. Dedicated Christian writers, translators and editors, as well as volunteers for literature distribution, are needed, as the present trustees seek to pass on the vision to the next generation.
We would encourage you to pray with us that Moriah Ministries will continue to reach and teach many more in the years ahead.By John Jeyanandam Arumbakkan, Chennai, India