For Nazarenes engaged in Prison ministry to network and correspond.
Latest Activity: Jul 2, 2014
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Wayne, in your studies at prison, which translation do you use, and how to the inmates follow?
Shalom -- Lawton Correctional Facility has been on lock down from all ministry since before Sukkot, so I haven't been there for awhile (gang/ethnic violence). I am hopeful that ministry will be allowed back in within the next few weeks. That said, for the mid-week Bible study's opening with a short Hebrew language study, we used the Artscroll interlinear Chumash. A usual homework assignment was to transliterate the first few verses of the Torah portion. Many of the men were able to do this quite readily.....others, and particularly those who did not make it to the study regularly had difficulty picking up Hebrew basics. For the mid-week Bible study itself (primarily using the Davar Bible School materials), I used the Hebraic Roots Version and Stern's Complete Jewish Bible (CJB) most of the time. Most of the men who had been "Messianic" for some time (about half) had that version, so I thought it helpful to use that translation or at least have it available. One of the men had the House of Yahweh translation, but none had the ISR Scriptures (any edition). A few used New American Standard, some used KJV, others used what was available from the prison (e.g. beat up paperback "Good News" translations). We did spend several weeks looking at the Emendations of the Scribes, and I printed out pg 1214 from my pdf of the 1998 ISR Scriptures for the men to reference. For our erev Shabbat services, I primarily use.the 1998 or 2009 ISR Scriptures, as well as referencing the CJB. Sometimes it is helpful for me to bring in a Chumash to show unusual Hebrew textual notes. Many of the men understand the ISR, while others were having problems following some of the readings while reading along in their Bibles (as you might imagine). Some of the men have low reading comprehension levels, but could still benefit from better Bibles. I am considering purchasing some ISR Bibles in bulk (as finances permit) to give away to some of the men (through the prison chaplain).
Just FYI, I have been corresponding with a prisoner (Timothy) who was at Albion (near Erie, PA). he has now been transferred to the Hunlock Creek faciliity and is due to get out in about 6 months or less. I have sent Tim an ISR version of the Bible. When he is released I hope to immerse him and take him to Sukkot. Please pray for Timothy and pray that he will grow in the faith and that haSatan will not be able to discourage or depress him.
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