TRANSLATION & A Bridge Between Urban Illiteracy and Biblical Fidelity #Streetlights


Most churches find teaching the Scriptures to be a daunting task in an increasingly unbiblical culture. Add to that the difficulty of sharing God’s Word with the illiterate and the church’s growing wariness over a tech-saturated gospel and the difficulty increases. However, there are some who display a keen desire to bear the burden of getting the Bible in as many hands, eyes and even ears as possible. Enter the “Streetlights” urban Bible program, an audio/visual collage of the Bible put to beats, with the expressed goal of communicating the authentic Word of God. Sparked with the signature voices of some of Christian Hip Hop’s finest artists (such as Propaganda, Braille, and Odd Thomas from the Humble Beast Record Label), the program is the first of its kind and carries with it the weight of blazing unpaved roads for the Gospel to travel. The endeavor has been spearheaded by the focused Esteban Shedd who is also known as Boogalu, lead rapper of the Humble Beast hip hop band Alert 312…

Another Translation

Despite his clear excitement for this project, Shedd was quick to explain the intentional thought process for including a broad, balanced diet of Scripture. “It’s an urban dynamic audio Bible that we build out in volumes because not only is literacy a problem, but Biblical literacy is also a problem. That’s why there’s Old Testament and New Testament packaged together.” The emcee spoke glowingly of his aunt and uncle, both Wycliffe Bible translators and avid supporters of Streetlights. He listed that they saw it not just as an “alternate translation” but also an “alternative dialect”. “It’s a multitude of different voices, dictions and backgrounds to show the diversity of the Body. You could have a brother on the West Side or a sister from Ghana who just moved to the North Side with the same material, and both are able to understand God’s Word…”

Boogalu spoke passionately of case after case where both young and old were transformed by Streetlights’ auditory approach, challenging every Christian’s call to communicate the Gospel.

“I don’t want to make them learn another language so they can learn the Gospel. I want to present the Gospel in their language and then say ‘learn this’…”

The Streetlights Bible Program has been instrumental in breaking new ground in the areas of biblical literacy and urban evangelism. What they have in common with other programs is a need for vocal support, funding, and grassroots influence from the Body of Christ. These three things are essential to insuring that the Streetlights Program reaches everyone that it needs to with the Gospel of Christ.

To find out more on how you can support and for some unique audio samplers, head over to

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