the word of a wise man in foolish hands

“The Church is the totality of those who are predestined to blessedness. It includes the Church triumphant in heaven… and the Church militant or men on earth. No one who is eternally lost has part in it. There is one universal Church, and outside of it there is no salvation. Its head is Christ. No pope may say that he is the head, for he can not say that he is elect or even a member of the Church.”  – John Wycliffe

John Wycliffe was an English Scholastic philosopher, theologian, lay preacher, translator, reformer and university teacher at Oxford in England, who was known as an early dissident in the Roman Catholic Church during the 14th century. Wikipedia

Born: 1328, Hipswell

Died: December 31, 1384, Lutterworth

Education: The Queen’s College, Oxford

John Wycliffe is called “The Morning Star of the Reformation”. He was the first person to translate the Bible into the English language in the 1380’s. Consider the fact that he lived nearly a century before Gutenberg invented the printing press, his New Testaments and Bibles were of course, hand-written manuscripts. In his day, Wycliffe was given more attention as a controversialist than a translator.

Wycliffe, was well-known throughout Europe for his opposition to the teaching of the organized Church, which he believed to be contrary to the Bible. As a church militant of sorts, his writings propagated the idea that the “Holy Scripture contains all truth and, being from God, is the only authority”.

Other comments taken from his writing “dominion founded by grace”“it is not necessary to go either to Rome or to Avignon in order to seek a decision from the pope, since the triune God is everywhere. Our pope is Christ.”… gives the impression that he was anti-church. In all of his controversies, he was a loyal churchman. Historical renderings of Wycliffe’s life reveals his problem was with religion, not the church.

One would think that the church would welcome and embrace the word of God, certainly not oppose it, but that is not historically been the case.

It can be seen the very first time God gave His word to the nation of Israel. It was met with a rebellious and stubborn spirit. The people of God not only opposed  His word, they supplanted it with a religious doctrine that would satisfy nothing more than their own, vain, religious spirit.  This is the same spirit that was evident in the day of Wycliffe, and we see that same spirit is alive and well in this dispensation we are living in.

vom extreme devotion – ‘Satan Tried to Get Rid of John Wycliffe’s Message’

On a cold English morning in 1428, men traipsed irreverently through the graveyard. One of them, finely dressed in religious robes, said, “Here it is. Dig it up. Let’s get this over with.”

When the shovels finally hit something solid, the man in fine clothes stood by, idly watching, and said, “Open it.”
“But, sir, he’s been in there fifty years!” replied one of the diggers. “There can’t be much left!”
The religious leader shuddered and then shrugged off his irritation. “Then pull the whole thing out. We’ll burn it all.”
What could have angered this man so much? Why dig up the man’s body fifty years after his death to ceremoniously burn him as a heretic? Around 1376, John Wycliffe had published the doctrine of “dominion as founded in grace.” This highly controversial message states, “The gospel alone is sufficient to rule the lives of Christians everywhere.”
Wycliffe had also begun translating the Latin Vulgate Bible into English and distributing it secretly in pamphlets and books. He continued this work until his death in 1384, one hundred thirty-three years before the Reformation.
“Dump the ashes in the river,” the man ordered as the fire died down. “That should be the last we hear of John Wycliffe and his teachings.” One hundred more years would pass before it was legal to read an English Bible.

Opposition to Wycliffe had nothing to do with the man, but his message…The religious folk of Wycliffe’s day were nothing less than pawns in the hand of the devil. The lust of their father, they were doing. Their vitriolic hatred for Wycliffe and the word of God did not only burn hot while he was alive, standing before their councils, but was just as vehement forty-four years after his death.

Words from the Psalmist… “from the wicked who assail me, from my mortal enemies who surround me. They close up their callous hearts, and their mouths speak with arrogance. They have tracked me down, they now surround me, with eyes alert, to throw me to the ground.”

“Dump the ashes in the river… that should be the last we hear of John Wycliffe and his teaching”, conversely, the world is still hearing from John Wycliffe and his teachings.

The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever.

A wise man will hear, and will increase learning; and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsels. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction. So it is senseless to pay tuition to educate a fool who has no heart for wisdom.

He that hath ears to hear, let him hear what the Spirit saith!

brother malachi

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    "Then they came for the trade unionists and I did not speak out because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for the Jews and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me and there was no one left to speak for me." Martin Niemoller

    Who will speak for those who can't speak for themselves?

    “Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter. If you say, ‘But we knew nothing about this’, does not He who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not He who guards your life know it? Will not He repay each one according to what he has done?” Proverbs 24:11-12