Saturday, January 27, 2024

Do you feel the need to fit in?

All photos courtesy of Unsplash

At one point or another we have all felt the need to fit in. Whether it be in our childhood, teenage years or even more recently conforming is the easy thing to do. Going along with the crowd is easy, standing against the crowd can be impossibly difficult to do.

Each generation has changing attitudes, some for good and some for bad. Often generations clash over their attitudinal differences. Yet it is very possible that we may disagree with our peers but go along with them just to fit in. 

Back in the 1500s a young man called William Tyndale disagreed with the church leaders at that time. The established church would read the Bible and address their congregations. The Bibles that they read were written in Latin and although literacy levels were low, those that could read certainly could not read Latin. 

William Tyndale could read, in fact he was a clever linguist and understood Latin, Hebrew and Greek. He read the old Bible manuscripts and the more he read the more perturbed he became. He understood that the priests did not always teach what the Bible stated. He wanted the Bible translated into English so that those that were able to read, could read it and decide for themselves if what they were being taught was the truth. 

One day while out walking and thinking about these things, William Tyndale saw a farm hand, a ploughboy, and considered he must be able to read and decide. 

William Tyndale tried to get support for his extensive translation project, however he found opposition at every turn. In fact, some people were so opposed that it became unsafe for him to remain in Britain. He moved abroad to continue his work, translating first the New Testament and then the Old Testament. 

There was still opposition to his work and William Tyndale definitely stood against the crowd that were so set against the translation into English. William was convinced that this is what God wanted him to do.

William spent thousands of hours diligently considering each phrase just to get it right. How must he have felt writing for the very first time in English that, ‘the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world.’

Although William would have hoped that many people would read it, he could never have perceived that it would have been instrumental in millions reading God’s Word and so many people coming to realise that they needed to confess to God that they were sinners and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour. 

The finished printed scripts were smuggled back over the channel and suddenly people were reading the Bible in their own language. The ploughboy, people from all sorts of backgrounds and even King Henry VIII. 

But still those that should have known better were vehemently opposed to the Bible in English and spies were sent out to find him and put a stop to the translation work once and for all. William Tyndale was tracked down and imprisoned and eventually executed at the age of 42 for doing such a wonderful thing and bringing us the Bible in English.

Amazingly, within just a few years of his death, King Henry gave a command for a Bible to be placed in every church in England, and that Bible was to be in English. William Tyndale believed in God, trusted His Son Jesus Christ as Saviour and so knew forgiveness for his sins. He was used by God to give us the Bible in English. He went against the crowd, he did what others were not prepared to do and was ultimately blessed by God. 

What about you, today the majority have no time for God, they will not trust in His Son, they will not turn to God from their sin. What about you? Will you go against the crowd and be blessed by God?


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