The Southern Asia-Pacific Division (SSD) launched its first Pathfinder honor on Biblical Languages (Hebrew) on February 28. As of the date of launching, 230 Master Guides, Pathfinders, and Adventist Youth had registered, and more than 130 attended the launching, which was held on Zoom video conference and on Facebook. The Facebook Live broadcast reached 6,377 people and 1,600 views.
The SSD Pathfinder Committee had met and voted the new Pathfinder honor on August 4, 2020.
The launch started with a devotional from SSD youth director Ron Genebago. He shared the four fundamental reasons why it is important to study the Bible in its original languages, including that the Bible was written in Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek and that the exegetical study of the Bible requires adequate knowledge of the original languages. “There are expressions in the original languages that are difficult to recognize after translation,” Genebago said. “Also, the witness of scholars confirms the benefits of knowing biblical languages.”
Several students who have gone through the Ministers and Youth Biblical Languages Organization for God’s Glory (MY BLOG), which initially sponsored the classes before the launching, shared their testimonies. Christina Ingram, a pilot and a Master Guide (MG) from Sri Lanka Mission, said, “I am so blessed and so thankful to MY BLOG for giving us this amazing opportunity to learn one of the biblical languages. I’ve always heard Hebrew words during sermons which pastors use, maybe like one or two words. But I never thought that one day I would be able to read Hebrew. So, during this time, I have been so blessed because I was able to study the Bible and to understand and see things in a whole new light.”
Daniel Victor, a Master Guide from Southeast Asia Union Mission (SAUM), added, “Learning Hebrew has always been a dream for me. I’ve always wished to learn the Hebrew language because it would enable me to read and understand the Old Testament in the original language it was written. By joining MY BLOG, that dream has been fulfilled, as I can now read the Hebrew language out of which the Old Testament has been written. I would like to encourage everyone to also take up the honor that will enable you to read and understand it.”
Several attendees responded positively to the launching of this new honor. Jeffrey James, a Master Guide from SAUM, said that he felt happy during the launching. “It was a dream come true to get the opportunity to learn the Hebrew language, especially for Pathfinder ministry,” he emphasized.
Robert J. Agustin from SAUM said, “I can’t wait to earn this special honor. Thanks to the entire committee and the SSD for making it possible.” Lyndelle Da, a Master Guide and a registered nurse from the North Philippine Union Conference added that she was happy when she saw more than 130 participants interested in learning the Hebrew biblical language, including her 12-year-old sister. “This Pathfinder honor is a blessing for us Christians who want to have a deeper understanding of God’s Word. I’m excited for the lessons to start,” she said.
The first Zoom-mediated class is scheduled for March 7 and on Sundays afterward.