William Tyndale - Oh Lord, open the King of England's eyes!

 

I was born near Wales, and brought up from a child in the University of Oxford. There I increased in the knowledge of languages, and other liberal arts, as especially in the knowledge of the Scriptures. I was addicted to the Scriptures; insomuch that I often privately read to students, instructing them in the knowledge and truth of the Scriptures.

Later, I met Master Welch, a knight of Gloucestershire, and became schoolmaster to his children, and over time was in good favor with him. Master Welch allowed me to sit at their table, and often we talked of learned men, such as Luther and of Erasmus; as well as many other questions about the Scripture.

I showed them simply and plainly when they at any time disagreed with the Scriptures: I would lay plainly before them the Scriptures, confute their errors, and confirm Godís sayings. And so we continued for a certain season, reasoning and contending together for a time, until at length they became weary, and bare a secret grudge in their hearts against me.

As this grew on, the priests of the country began to grudge and rail against me, claiming my teachings were heresy; and accused me secretly to the chancellor. I was brought before the chancellor, and he threatened and treated me like a dog and charged me--with no accuser--but the priests of the country were there. But I escaped returned to my master again.

There was a doctor who lived nearby, whose heart was open to the truth of the Scriptures, and prophetically said to me, "Do you not know that the pope is very Antichrist, whom the Scripture speaketh of? But beware what you say; for if you shall be perceived to be of that opinion, it will cost you your life."

Not long after, I was with another doctor who said these blasphemous words, "We were better to be without God's laws than the pope's." The grudge of the priests increased against me, and they never ceased harassing me. I finally had to leave the country.

Humphrey Mummuth, alderman of London, took me into his house, where I lived (as Mummuth said) like a good priest, studying both night and day. I stayed in London almost a year, observing the course of the world--especially the demeanor of the preachers, how they boasted themselves, and set up their authority, who greatly disliked me. Plus, there was no room in the house to translate the new testament, and so I had to leave, again.

By God's providence I departed to Germany, where I considered that if the Scripture were turned into common speech, that the poor people might read and see the simple plain Word of God. I saw that it wasnít possible to establish the lay people in any truth, except the Scriptures were so plainly laid before their eyes in their mother tongue that they might see the meaning of the text for themselves. Because whatever truth was taught to them, the enemies of the truth would quench it with traditions of their own making, not founded in the Scripture.

I considered this to be the source of all mischief in the Church: the Scriptures of God were hidden from the people's eyes for so long the abominable doings and idolatries maintained by the pharisaical clergy could not be seen for what it was.

For these and many other considerations I was stirred up by God to translate the Scripture into my mother tongue, first setting to translate the New Testament, which came forth in print about A.D. 1525. Cuthbert Tonstal, bishop of London, and Sir Thomas More were mad with rage and planned to destroy my false erroneous translation, as they called it.



Eventually, I was betrayed to the authorities, and arrested in Antwerp in 1535 and held in the castle of Vilvoorde near Brussels.

In prison, I was offered an advocate which I refused, saying that I would make answer for myself. I preached to them who had me locked up, and those in the Castle reported that if I were not a good Christian man, they knew not whom they might take to be one.

I was tried on a charge of heresy in 1536 and condemned to the stake, despite Thomas Cromwell's intercession on my behalf. I was strangled, but I regained consciousness, and finally was burned alive on 6 October 1536. My final words were,

"Oh Lord, open the King of England's eyes!Ē

 


--bro. tim pickl
compiled Saturday May 5, 2007 A.D.

also see:  http://www.faithwriters.com/wc-article-level1-previous.php?id=15620

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Psalm 133
[1] Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!
[2] It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron's beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments;
[3] As the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the LORD commanded the blessing, even life for evermore.

Ephesians 4
[1] I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called,
[2] With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love;
[3] Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
[4] There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;
[5] One Lord, one faith, one baptism,
[6] One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
[7] But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.
[8] Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.
[9] (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?
[10] He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)
[11] And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
[12] For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
[13] Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:
[14] That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
[15] But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:
[16] From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.
[17] This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind,
[18] Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart:
[19] Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.
[20] But ye have not so learned Christ;
[21] If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus:
[22] That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts;
[23] And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;
[24] And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.
[25] Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.
[26] Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:
[27] Neither give place to the devil.
[28] Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.
[29] Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.
[30] And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
[31] Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:
[32] And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.

James 2
[20] But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?
[21] Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar?
[22] Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect?
[23] And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.
[24] Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.
[25] Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way?
[26] For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.