William Tyndale, was the first person to translate the Bible directly from Hebrew and Greek text into English. William Tyndale developed a love for scripture very early. Born in Gloucester, his family moved to Oxford, where he later studied at Oxford University. He also attended Cambridge. William was a linguist. As well as English, he spoke several languages:  French, Greek, Hebrew, German, Italian, Latin and Spanish. 

William Tyndale had a vision. In his heart, he saw a picture of the ordinary man and woman on the street having access to, and owning, a Bible.  However, it was forbidden, it was illegal.  The reading of scripture was restricted to, Latin speaking, educated Clergy. In 1523, William Tyndale visited the then Bishop of London for support and protection, but was betrayed, denounced and branded a heretic.

William Tyndale’s desire to translate the Bible into English, for the ordinary man and woman on the street, could not be stopped. He fled to Hamburg in 1524, where he persevered and the first prints of his translation were produced by 1525 and reached South East England and London, by 1526.

By 1535, William Tyndale was arrested and by 1536, he was strangled and burnt at the stake. Even in his death, God’s plan prevailed. William Tyndale’s astute translations of the Bible from Greek and Hebrew helped the reformation. Many scholars had their eyes opened and William Tyndale’s work on the New Testament got printed in vast quantities and spread all over England.

Be encouraged! Do not be alarmed when you go through trials as a follower of Jesus Christ. Until Christ returns, the persecution and betrayal of true followers of Christ will continue. As a believer, you must be ready. The Apostle Peter speaks of, “the Spirit of glory and of God,” upon those who are insulted for Christ (1 Peter 4: 13, 14). The glory of God rests upon the shoulders of those who proclaim Christ’s majesty. No man can curse, what God has blessed. There are no apologies to be made for the teaching of scripture and sharing of God’s Word in every language. It is to be done with great boldness and clarity.

It is truly a privilege to serve the Lord. Don’t you know the Spirit of glory and God, shines all around you, a piercing light for the whole world to see? When Christ is given His proper place, the glory comes down. I encourage you to give God His rightful place, without fear of slander or persecution. The Word of God must be preached, the Bible must be read in every language.

The battle is won, Christ is victorious!

© Ruth Dickson

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