"It is a good move and about time too," commented Diane Billingsworth, professor of Social Theology at the Jeremy Kyle University. "The mobile phone market is currently used for all sorts of sinful activities, from gambling to pornography. So it is good that young Christians can get their hands on the Good News. They can now take Jesus into their hearts in the dark under the bedclothes."
The company has said that they have had to adjust the presentation of the Biblical teachings to match the capabilities of as many phones as possible and also to appeal to the teenage market. Hence these products also represent the latest incarnation of the Bible, this time into "text speak" a sample of which is included below from Genesis, or Gnsis: -
- n d beginN God creatD d heavNz & d erth.
- nw d erth wz formless & Mt, drknez wz Ovr d surfAc of d dEp, & d Spirit of God wz
hovRN Ovr d H2Oz.
- & God sed, "lt ther b lite," & ther wz lite.
- God saw dat d lite wz gud, & He separated d lite frm d drknez.
- God caLd d lite "dA," & d drknez he caLd "nyt." & ther wz evNg, & ther wz
morning—the 1st dA.
- & God sed, "lt ther b an expanse Btwen d H2Oz 2 separate H2O frm H2O."
- So God mAd d expanse & separated d H2O undR d expanse frm d H2O abof it. & it wz so.
- God caLd d expanse "sky." & ther wz evNg, & ther wz morning—the 2nd dA.
- & God sed, "lt d H2O undR d sky b gathRD 2 1 plAc, & lt dry ground apEr." & it wz so.
- God caLd d dry ground "land," & d gathRD H2Oz he caLd "seas." & God saw dat it wz gud
"I think a text message Bible will be as understandable as any other kind," she said. "Yes text messages can be misinterpreted, but then the Good Book is being continuously re-interpreted all over the world to satisfy the needs of those reading it. You never know if there is mistranslation it might cancel out the ones already in the English version!"
Mrs Billingsworth said that whilst the likely market for such products was uncertain within the increasingly secular UK and whether or not teenagers would find Christian products cool, any company trading in such religious goods was uniquely placed to raise capital.
"As it says in Genesis 19:8," explains Mrs Billingsworth. "Should the business fail and the creditors come calling they can always offer sex with their daughters as payment."