Tyndale: The Man Who Gave God an English Voice by David Teems

Posted: February 14, 2012 in Christianity
William Tyndale was a man with a singular focus that drove him even against the powers that be. That focus was to give God an English voice and to put it into the hands of as many as possible. Tyndale was a figure in the Reformation, not because that was his intent, but because the ability to have God’s word in our own language is powerful. Tyndale eventually gave his life for that cause.
English: William Tyndale, Protestant reformer ...

The writing of this book by Teems is somewhat hard to follow. For a biography, this book jumps around quite a bit. I was also disappointed in the fact that so little of the book seemed to actually be about Tyndale. Much time and space is given to  the people who were a part of Tyndale’s life. I was intrigued by their stories, but would have loved to learn more about Tyndale. If you are looking for a book on Tyndale alone, I would advise to look for something else.

With that being said, what can we learn from Tyndale?  One thing is for sure, and that is that English speaking people owe a debt of gratitude to Tyndale. With millions of bibles in English now, we take for granted the fact that we have them. I think of the videos of tribes who get the bible in their language for the first time. I can only imagine what it feels like to hear God speaking in your own language for the first time. Tyndale died the death of a “heretic” for us to have that privilege. Tyndale was also an artist when it came to the English language, having given us thousands of words that we still use today. It has been said that there would be no Shakespeare without Tyndale. God used Tyndale greatly to reach English speaking people. In 1536 Tyndale was choked to death and then burned at the stake. This was symbolism by the Catholic church to silence Tyndale forever before going into eternity. The Catholic church succeeded in killing him, but not in silencing him. Every time we open and English bible, we should be thankful to God that He gave us William Tyndale. Tyndale’s last words were “Lord! open the king of England’s eyes.” And the Lord did, as the king authorized an English bible the following year.

I received this book free for review from Thomas Nelson Inc.

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