On Saturday, April 13, 2019, Brother Stephen Lett of the Governing Body released the revised Japanese-language edition of the New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures. The revision was released during a special meeting held at the Noevir Stadium Kobe in Kobe, Japan, with 20,868 in attendance. The program was livestreamed to eight Assembly Halls and many Kingdom Halls in the branch territory. Later that day and the next day, a video recording of the meeting was shown at Kingdom Halls for those who were not tied in to the original program. A grand total of 220,491 were able to enjoy the special meeting over the weekend.
We rejoice with the over 2,950 Japanese-language congregations, groups, and pregroups worldwide that now have the revised New World Translation, a powerful gift from Jehovah for personal study and for use in the ministry.—Hebrews 4:12.
The New World Translation has a history in Japan that goes back 45 years. In 1973, Brother Lyman Swingle, who served on the Governing Body, released the Japanese-language New World Translation of the Christian Greek Scriptures at the “Divine Victory” International Assembly in Osaka, Japan. During the nine years following its release, 1,140,000 copies were distributed, approximately 75 times more than the number of publishers in Japan at the time. In 1982, the complete New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures was released, with printing and binding done in Japan. Now, with the release of the revised Japanese-language edition, the year 2019 marks another milestone for Bible translation by Jehovah’s people in Japan.
The New World Translation has been translated in whole or in part into 179 languages, including 22 complete revisions based on the 2013 revised English edition.