September 6th marked the 473 anniversary of the martyrdom of William Tyndale (1494-1536). God used his translation of the Scriptures as the foundation for nearly every other English translation that would follow. He is most famous for his response to the Romanist schoolman who had proclaimed “Well then! it were better to be without God’s laws than the pope’s.” to which Tyndale responded “If God spares my life, ere many years I will take care that a ploughboy shall know more of the Scriptures than you do.” Tyndale, as history reveals, was true to his word. Without question his crown gleams brightly for the amount of light he shed in a very dark world.
I find the spirit of William Tyndale’s life reflected most clearly in the following quotation that I have written on the flyleaf of my Bible.
“We know that this Word is from God, as we know that fire burns; not because anyone has told us, but because a Divine fire consumes our hearts. O the brightness of the face of Moses! O the splendor of the glory of Jesus Christ, which no veil conceals! O the inward power of the Divine word, which compels us, with so much sweetness, to love and to do! O the temple of God within us, in which the Son of God dwells.”
His esteem for the Scriptures was motivated by his esteem for God. His life always provokes me to look at my own heart, to revere the Scriptures, and to thank my God . Consider reading more about him yourself. I have the following biography:
Edward, Brian. God’s Outlaw: The Story of William Tyndale and the English Bible. Darlington: Evangelical Press, 1976.