Skip to content


The Advent of Oral Bible Translation

  • by FCBH
A man uses Render during an Oral Bible Translation project in Mexico.

‍The mission of Faith Comes By Hearing revolves around making God’s Word accessible to everyone. This commitment drives them to tirelessly expand the reach of Scripture’s life-saving message. They achieve this by producing Audio Bibles in various languages and making them freely available.

Research shows that seventy percent of the global population primarily learns through listening. This majority, particularly in oral cultures without written systems, grasps the essence of the Bible most effectively when they hear it spoken aloud. As a result, in these oral communities, faith is nurtured and propagated through the act of hearing.

Read More »The Advent of Oral Bible Translation

The Story of Proclaimer

  • by FCBH

An Answer to Prayer: The Proclaimer

‍From dial-up to high-speed internet, the world around us constantly transforms as innovations arise. At Faith Comes By Hearing (FCBH), this need for constant innovation is ever present. More than twenty years ago, Faith Comes By Hearing dedicated the ministry to share Audio Bibles on cassette tapes. But the world began to change, and new ideas were needed.

In 2000, FCBH found that cassette tapes were not practical for the millions of people around the world without electricity. Faith Comes By Hearing saw a need for a new, solar-powered player restricting no one from God’s Word in audio. This new machine would have to be a dedicated playback unit—it would play God’s Word and nothing else. But while this new gadget seemed incredible on paper, the ministry struggled with how to produce such a complex device.

Read More »The Story of Proclaimer

The Dramatized Audio Bible

  • by FCBH

‍The Audio Bible: Multi-voice, dramatized, high-quality, pure Word of God. It’s a standard of Faith Comes By Hearing and the typical model employed by our recording teams worldwide. But who came up with such a ground-breaking methodology?‍

It all started on a bus. Anet Jackson, co-founder of Hosanna (the original name of Faith Comes By Hearing), found great joy in sharing the Gospel with children via puppet shows in the various towns her family would visit during their itinerant ministry days. At Vacation Bible Schools around the western United States, Anet and her four children brought Scripture to life via dramatized portrayals of biblical stories.Read More »The Dramatized Audio Bible

One Matchstick – The Senga Fire

  • by FCBH

“When we work together with our different gifts, we can say, ‘God has accomplished this.'” 
Rev. Katete Jackson Jones, BiLTA, Zambia

One year ago, Faith Comes By Hearing‘s video team set out to capture an incredible story of community transformation through God’s Word in audio. Now, the organization is ready to share that story with the world.

One Matchstick: The Senga Fire, tells the incredible true story of the Senga of Zambia receiving the Bible in their language for the first time in the tribe’s 2,000- year history.

Prior to this monumental breakthrough, no written or oral translation of Scripture existed in the Senga’s mother tongue. For years, interaction with the Bible in any meaningful way required the Senga to learn the languages of neighboring tribes. Though they desired to know and understand the Bible, their tribe was deemed too small to receive a written translation.

Read More »One Matchstick – The Senga Fire

What makes a good oral Bible story

Story group in West Africa

What makes a good oral Bible story? There are many ministries that develop oral Bible stories, and they have varying approaches on the process of developing an abbreviated and simplified story from a biblical passage(s).

Good story development follows four principles embraced by many in the story community of biblically faithful to the textual Bible passage(s), orally reproducible (meaning that that story can be easily learned and told by others), naturally told and the story is appropriate to the culture, often expressed in the use of key terms understood by the local community. In addition, a good oral Bible story based on a Bible passage(s) has a plot or story line that keeps the listener interested and engaged. The actual storyteller can also influence the quality of the story experience to the listener

When developing an oral Bible story, a ministry may embrace common elements practiced by other story practitioners (e.g., testing the story with those who don’t follow Jesus) while having nuances (e.g., use of technology) in the story development process that is unique to the ministry.

So what makes a good oral Bible story? Two important aspects are fidelity to an established process and people embracing the story.

Read More »What makes a good oral Bible story

Recording God’s Word by Any Means

  • by FCBH

Imagine: You live in a secluded village on an island in the Pacific. You have only ever known the religion and rituals of your community, but you know in your soul that there must be something more. You yearn for truth and peace. Once, a foreigner brought a book in the local trade language and tried to tell your people about God, but your heart language does not have a written form. Only a few of your family members and friends can read the trade language to a small degree. The book that the foreigner brought contained complex wording that made no sense even to them. You eventually resign yourself to the fact that if there is a God, He doesn’t care about you enough to speak His truth in your language.

…Until one day, your neighbor shows you an interesting device. Emitting from it are words you recognize. Your neighbor tells you that at last, because of this device, your community can hear God speak—in your language.

Faith Comes By Hearing strives to ensure that every last person has the chance to hear God’s Word, no matter where they live or what language they speak. To carry out this work, we employ a variety of methods in recording and providing Scripture to more people.

Read More »Recording God’s Word by Any Means

Oral Bible Translation

Oral communicators account for 70% of the world’s population. Many of them do not encounter situations in their daily life when they need to read or write. Using their rich oral tradition, they sing, tell stories, pass down history and teach skills to the next generation. There are over a thousand oral cultures in the world today, whose languages have not been written down. The Apostle Paul said, “There are doubtless many different languages in the world, and none is without meaning.” (1 Corinthians 14:10)  Yes, oral languages are meaningful, and significant.

It takes years of language study and analysis before even a Bible translation team can start translating in these languages using traditional methods. Even if the Bible is finally translated, only the literate few will be able to encounter the Word of God. It will remain unreachable for the majority of people speaking these languages. Oral Bible Translation overcomes these hurdles and engages millions of people with the Word of God.

Read More »Oral Bible Translation

How to Make Oral Communication More Effective

How to Make Oral Communication More Effective

Communicating effectively to non-readers

Author: Rick Brown
Publisher: International Journal of Frontier Missions (21.4 Winter 2004)

In seeking to free ourselves from the biases of a print-oriented culture, we need to consider, not only the kinds of media and discourse genre (e.g. narrative) that are most appropriate for oral cultures, but also the most effective ways to use those genres and media. What do non-readers like to see and hear? What do they enjoy listening to? Their choices will not necessarily be the same as those of print communicators. If the styles of presentation are ones which oral communicators prefer, then they will be more likely to listen, to understand, and to remember what they hear.

In this paper, Rick Brown argues that oral cultures have their own preferences for ways to communicate truth, and that these are often different from what print-oriented people prefer. In order to share the message most effectively, we need to find out what media and methods work best for them. In most cases this will include a multi-media approach with an emphasis on memorizing the Scriptures with the aid of high-quality recordings from skilled actors or voicers.

Read More »How to Make Oral Communication More Effective