The Book of Jonah and Gospel Parables in the Abkhaz language
January 17, 2024

IBT released two editions in the Abkhaz language: the Book of the Jonah and "Gospel Parables".

The Abkhaz are the indigenous population of Abkhazia (122 2000 people, census 2011). According to the 2020 census 8,177 Abkhaz live in Russia. The Abkhaz language belongs to the Abkhaz-Adyg language family.

The book of Jonah has profound symbolic meaning. This short dramatic story of an Old Testament prophet who spent three days inside a large fish relates essential truths about human existence before God. This story applies equally to the prophet Jonah, individually to every human being, and collectively to the entire human race, and it raises such important issues as disobedience to God, repentance, and God's mercy. The edition is published in a large format, with colourful illustrations. The Abkhaz translation is accompanied by two parallel texts - Russian and English. The presence of different translations will contribute to wider use of the book in bilingual environment, will help in learning languages, and most importantly will emphasise the main idea of the book that God is not limited by geographical or ethnic boundaries, but cares for all peoples.

"Gospel Parables" contain four parables from the Gospel of Luke: the Good Samaritan, the Wedding Feast, the Prodigal Son and the Pharisee and the Tax Collector. The parables found in the Gospels are allegorical lessons, figures and examples, borrowed from nature and everyday life. Jesus Christ widely used such short stories in his sermons to communicate profound spiritual truths about God's Kingdom. The new Abkhaz publication includes illustrations which closely follow the plot of the parables. The edition includes 35 graphic drawings, which illustrate the subjects of the parables in detail.

A PDF versions of the Book of Jonah and the Gospel Proverbs in Abkhaz are available on the IBT website in the e-book section.