New Urdu Gospel of Matthew Released!
Ibne Mariam’, revision of The Gospel of Matthew in Urdu, with study notes, published by The University of the Nation’s Press has been printed in Pakistan, but there aren’t enough to go round. Demand already exceeds supply by multiples of hundreds of thousands. When the New Testament in Hindustani (Urdu) was first printed, the situation was much the same, thousands longed to read it for themselves.
‘Ibne Mariam’ is based on that original translation, completed in 1812. The work had been the vision of Sayed Maulavi Muhammed Fitrat, a scholar from Lucknow and one claiming descent from the family of the Prophet Muhammed. Fitrat, who was employed by Fort William College, Calcutta, was keen to provide the New Testament to his people. He knew the life the Christ and the way He was persecuted by Jewish religious leaders, was a story they would want to read for themselves.
By 1805, he had completed his first attempt at Matthew’s Gospel. However, it was not in the Persian script and was a stiff, unsatisfactory, rendering of the Greek. Fort William College closed soon after, but Mirza Fitrat’s vision and determination lived on. Rev. William Carey, founder of Serampore College, helped to recruit a suitable colleague knowledgeable in linguistics as well as Greek. Rev. Henry Martyn, a Cambridge scholar, was barely 25years old when he set sail for Calcutta, but once he and Mirza Fitrat met, they worked day and night to produce an exemplary translation of the entire New Testament.
A manuscript of this work from 1811 was discovered and with this help, YWAM's University of the Nations Press has now published a twenty-first century version of ‘The Son of Mary’ in Urdu, as narrated by the eye witness, Matthew.
In flowing Urdu, beautifully embellished with borders, maps, drawings and photos of the Holy Land, this new publication contains original study notes by Zafar Francis, Chairman of YWAM Pakistan, a scholar in the Urdu language. He explains the context of the events and meanings of the Teachings contained in the Book.
The Son of Mary, he explains, was alive during a time when Jews were looking for someone to lead them in an uprising against their Roman oppressors. Instead, He turned His incredibly precise verbal attacks onto their own religious authorities, revealing their collaboration with pagans, exploitation of the poor and their invention of their endless religious regulations which none could bear.
Not surprisingly, this public exposure of their corrupted authority created many enemies for Him and He suffered in their hands, only to overcome in unique and unexpected ways, silencing all of them in one stroke.
The Book provides extensive bibliography and references as well as in depth background articles about the Urdu version, the history of printing, meaning of the translation process and the sources used in his study notes. This is enough for any enquiring soul, no matter what their particular interest might be.
Maulavi Mirza Fitrat and Rev. Henry Martyn’s labours of love live on in today’s ‘Ibne Mariam’.
‘Ibne Mariam’ is listed on www.amazon.co.uk. If you would like to donate towards further printings of Ibne Mariam, please email : email@example.com