Autumn 2023 Newsletter on the Uzbek project

The Uzbek Bible translation project is one of those projects where the full Bible, already translated and published (in 2016), is being actively incorporated into the life of local Christian communities and into Uzbek society at large.  The Uzbek Bible app for smartphones holds the record for being the most downloaded IBT app for several years in a row. One of the project's translators, let’s call her Esther (she asked us not to use her real name since Uzbekistan is a Muslim country), gladly shared a few stories about her many years of work in the project and plans for the future.

“Uzbek Christian believers looked forward greatly to getting the full Bible. The attitude to the Bible varies among traditional Muslims, but the main thing that all of our readers noted, regardless of their religion, was that the translated text is very clear. One Uzbek scholar, who is a university professor and a traditional Muslim, even said, ‘This is one of the best translated books I’ve ever read in Uzbek.’ ...

June 7, 2017

IBT has published and officially presented the first-ever translation of the full Bible in Uzbek. This Turkic language is spoken by up to 30 million people worldwide, primarily in the Central Asian nation of Uzbekistan. Uzbek now joins about 600 other languages that have a full translation of the canonical Holy Scriptures (less than 10% of the world’s total languages.)
The official Bible presentation was held by BSU and IBT in Tashkent on June 1, 2017 at the headquarters of the Tashkent diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church. The presentation was attended by representatives of Uzbekistan’s Committee of Religious Affairs, the Russian Orthodox Church, the embassies of Russia and the United States, the United Bible Societies (including the Bible societies of Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan), the Islamic University of Tashkent, and leaders of various Christian confessions.

A Christian woman from Central Asia regularly travels to her Muslim homeland, where everyone knows that she is a Christian. “Some years ago I came to a village inhabited by Uzbeks. A new mosque had just been built,” she reported. “The mullah proudly showed me the new building and probably expected criticism from me as a Christian. But I praised the mosque and said that I hoped that God’s word would be preached there. He was surprised, and when I gave him a copy of the New Testament in Uzbek he took it, touched it with his lips and forehead and finally held it close to his heart...