Called to the Work of Translation

James Jennings

11 January 2018

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Called to the Work of Translation

In Eifon Evan’s biography of Daniel Rowland he records of an association meeting in which one brother was advised that his call was not to preach but to translate. On page 180-181 Evan’s records:

“After prayer all the exhorters were examined and approved, except one. Occasionally, when suitability for public ministry was evidently lacking, an exhorter would either withdraw his services or be asked to refrain from the work. An instance of this is found in the case of John Jones, some of whose hymns William Williams later included in one of his selections. Jones graciously wrote to the brethren: ‘By seeing that all of my brethren did accord in their testimony that my call to exhort publicly was not clear, and some words that Mr. Rowland had to speak did come to me… I had some power to resign myself to the glory of God. Then I had more liberty to give over exhorting… When I manifested my condition to some of my brethren, they informed me that they thought that my work, to the best of their light, was translating some books from the English to the Welsh.'”

The counsel of those around him was that he was not called to preach but to translate. Now, the biography does not record of what became of John Jones. But if indeed the counsel of his brethren was that God’s call was not preaching but translation work, by going on that path he would bear the greatest fruitfulness in his life. But if he pursued a course contrary to how God had designed him, it would lead to much wasted time. It is for our own benefit that through those in our local church we rightly discern our call and go and pursue it with great zeal. We will be most effective in our work if our work is the work God has designed and given us to do.

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