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William Tyndale - Death For An English Bible

"Study to show yourself approved to God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth." 2 Timothy 2:15

William Tyndale (1496-1536) was an early reformer, educated at Oxford, brilliant linguist and the first to translate the original Hebrew and Greek Scriptures into English. Tyndale believed it was paramount that the common person have a Bible they could read for themselves and not depend on, imperfect and prone to corruption, leaders to read and interpret it for them. He believed the people wouldn't be so easily led astray by corrupt leaders and corrupt religion if they knew Scriptures for themselves.

Tyndale argued that God gave the Law to Moses in the Hebrews mother tongue, the prophets wrote in their mother tongue so why shouldn't England have Scriptures in their mother tongue? False teachers throughout the ages have convinced masses they couldn't understand the Scriptures so they should depend on the educated leaders' interpretation. This is the lie Tyndale was fighting against.

Tyndale was eventually successful in the printing of the English Bible, despite savage opposition from Henry VIII and the Catholic Church. 18,000 copies of the Tyndale's English translation were smuggled into England. But in 1530, Henry VIII ordered all the Bibles rounded up and destroyed. If anyone was caught with a Tyndale Bible they were to be executed. Only two copies of the Tyndale Bible survived, but large amounts were incorporated into the 1611 English translation also known as the Authorized King James Version.

In 1535 Tyndale was arrested, imprisoned and eventually found guilty of heresy. In October of 1536, Tyndale was strangled and burned at the stake. But two years later, Henry VIII allowed publication of the English Bible for select people of rank in England, but reading it out loud was forbidden.

I heard a Pastor say once "We test the temperature of our bath water before getting in, but we don't test what we're being taught from the pulpit." Because of Tyndale, we have Bibles today that we can study for ourselves and always test with Scripture what we're being taught.

Recommended reading: "William Tyndale, The Obedience Of A Christian Man"


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Disclaimer: I do not condone the teaching of men by women nor am I trying to exercise authority over men by using this blog as a method of teaching men. All posts are for the edification of women. For more on what I believe concerning this issue please see: Women - No Dominion Over Men
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