Malay

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The Malay language (language code: ms; autonym: Bahasa Melayu) is spoken by more than 200 million people mainly in Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia. Formally it is segmented into Bahasa Indonesia the official language of Indonesia and Bahasa Malaysia one of the official languages of Malaysia besides English. In Singapore and Brunei the language is referred to as Bahasa Melayu ("language of the Malays"). The differences between Indonesian and Malaysian are mainly based on the vocabulary due to the different colonial powers that the nations where ruled by. Although they are closely related, Malaysian and Indonesian need to be treated as independent languages with common ancestry. The language can be written with an adjusted Arabic script and the more common Latin script, the former is almost exclusively used in Islamic texts and education. For more information see Wikipedia:Malay language

Malay Bible translations

There are various Bible translations into the Malay language. The most common are the "Alkitab Berita Baik" and the "Alkitab Versi Borneo". The latter was especially created for usage in the east-Malaysian states, where a big Christian minority speaks Bahasa Melayu. However, using these bibles in Malaysia is difficult, since there is an ongoing dispute over the usage of the word "Allah" by non-Muslims. In some federal states this is prohibited by law, although these bibles are used by Bahasa speaking churches in mainland Malaysia as well.

Alkitab Berita Baik

The "Alkitab Berita Baik" is the oldest Bible translation in modern Malaysian Malay. The translation was finished in 1987 and a revised version was published in 1996. It is an easy to read Bible translation, that focuses on translating the meanings of passages and verses rather then meanings word by word. It uses the word "Allah" for God and draws on a number of Christian vocabulary. It was mainly translated for the Malay speaking Christian communities in the Malaysian Peninsula and in east Malaysia.

Bible App:


Alkitab Versi Borneo

The "Alkitab Versi Borneo" is a Malay language Bible, that is especially aimed on the Christian Communities in Sabah and Sarawak the federal states of Malaysia on the island of Borneo. It is a word by word translation. It is a very intellectual Bible translation, that sometimes uses very formal and high standard speech. It continues to use the word "Allah" for God and "Yesus Kristus" as name for Jesus. Like the "Alkitab Berita Baik" it draws on much Christian vocabulary. The translation was released in 2015.

Bible App:

Standalone App:

Other Bible Translations

There are other Bible translations in Bahasa Melayu. The Bible App lists the "Kitab Alkudus: Injil Isa Al-Masih" that was translated in 1866. Although this translation omits most Christian vocabulary and uses more "islamic" terms, the translators writing style is not readable for most Malay speakers today.

There is however a usable translation that focuses on using a more indigenous religious vocabulary. The "Kitab Suci Injil Taurat dan Zabur" (Engl. "The Holy Books Gospels, Torah and Psalms") are a revised version of the "Kitab Alkudus". It uses religious vocabulary and is a very reliable translation that intellectual Muslims understand. It is available online or in a standalone App for Android:



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Available resources in Malay