Thursday January 17, 2019
ISA 28:9 "To whom would He teach knowledge?
And to whom would He interpret the message?
Those just weaned from milk?
Those just taken from the breast?
ISA 28:10 "For He says,
'Order on order, order on order,
Line on line, line on line,
A little here, a little there.'"
Learning comes only from the daily grind in God’s word.
1401: King of England declares possession of a Bible in English is worthy of death.
In the history of the Bible, we find in the Middle Ages that the Catholic church forbade people to read the Bible. In 1401, a law was passed by the king of England to the effect that anyone who possessed the Bible in English, which was now available to them thanks to the work of John Wycliff in 1382, should be put to death. This law was active until Henry VIII severed ties with Rome in the 1530s. Queen Mary, Bloody Mary, enacted similar prohibitions on the Bible in English in 1555. The first question ever asked by in inquisitor of a ‘heretic’ was whether he knew any part of the Bible in his own tongue.
Tyndale Bible 1526.
William Tyndale was the first to translated to English directly from Greek. He was condemned as a heretic and executed by strangulation, and burned. But of the 3,000 copies of his 1526 New Testament, only 3 survived. His work comprises 80-90 percent of the 1611 King James’ New Testament.
Council of Trent 1550’s, upheld by Vatican I and II (1870; 1965): no one interprets Scripture, apocrypha is legit, unwritten traditions held by Rome.
The following decisions were made at the Council of Trent (1545-1563) concerning the word of God, and were unreservedly upheld by Vatican I (1869-1870) and Vatican II (1962-1965).
1) Apart from the doctors of the church, no one was allowed to interpret the Scriptures.
2) The apocryphal books were accepted as canonical, along with the Old and New Testaments.
3) The unwritten traditions were believed to have been received by the apostles from the mouth of Christ under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit and entrusted to the guardship of the Roman Catholic Church.
The Council of Trent was the Catholic Church’s answer to the reformation. People being able to read the Bible for themselves was the greatest threat to Roman Catholic supremacy.
Incredibly, this still happens. Some pulpits claim to be the only ones who can interpret the Bible. They can’t stop you from getting your own copy, so they flatly say that if you try to read it, you won’t understand it without them interpreting for you. This is hogwash. While yes, there are some difficult passages that require knowledge of history and language to properly interpret, most of the Bible is clearly understood by the Christian reader who is without bias. You don’t need someone to interpret for you, “Love is patient, love is kind…”
EPH 3:3 that by revelation there was made known to me the mystery, as I wrote before in brief.
EPH 3:4 And by referring to this, when you read you can understand my insight into the mystery of Christ,
The pastor has the gift of time so that you can learn in an hour what might take several hours to compile. He doesn’t have a philosopher’s stone in his head that enables him to see what no one else can.
I have been literally told by a Christian that he cannot read the Bible for himself and that’s what I was for. The conclusion is that you don’t want to read it or you’re too lazy to.
To imagine that we have fought and won against a powerful organization calling themselves the only church, who made it a capital crime to read the Bible in the local tongue, and then have gone and done the same thing at the behest of pulpits that are arrogant and perhaps scared of scrutiny and/or losing members, is tragically foolish.
Around 1540, protestant archbishop Thomas Cranmer wrote a two-part homily titled A fruitful Exhortation to the Reading and Knowledge of Holy Scripture. Cranmer was a leader of the English Reformation and he advocated that all in England read the Bible for themselves.
He wrote, “more darkens Christ, and the glory of God, nor brings in more blindness, and all kinds of vices, than does the ignorance of God’s word.” [Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury, 1540]
PHI 1:9 And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment,
PHI 1:10 so that you may approve the things that are excellent, in order to be sincere and blameless until the day of Christ;
PHI 1:11 having been filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.
In his engaging sermons, Cranmer appealed to his national flock to familiarize themselves with the Bible. He instructed them “to muse” night and day on the “great and special gift’ of the Scriptures, to ruminate, and (as it were) chew the cud, that we may have the sweet juice, spiritual effect, marrow, honey, kernel, taste, comfort and consolation of them.”
Appreciation the difficulties some would encounter with the more challenging passages, he gently encouraged the weak and ignorant to take the following godly counsel.
“And concerning the hardness of Scripture, he that is not able to brook strong meat, yet he may suck the sweet and tender milk, and defer the rest, until he wax stronger, and come to more knowledge.” [ibid]
He continues, “For God receives the learned and unlearned, and casts away none … And the Scripture is full, as well of low valleys, plain ways, and easy for every man to use, and to walk in: as also of high hills and mountains, which few men can climb unto. And whosoever gives his mind to holy Scriptures, with diligent study and burning desire, it cannot be … that he should be left without help.”
Bibles were still expensive in Europe in the 1500’s. In England, a copy of Tyndale’s pocket New Testament cost 3 shillings, which was approximately two week’s wages for a common laborer. The people of England would gather together and the Tyndale NT would be read out loud. It is recorded that even the illiterate in England committed whole chapters of the Bible to memory by listening to them being read over and over again.
ROM 10:17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.
It would be hard for us to imagine growing up in a world where your church service was conducted in Latin and the scripture was read in Latin, of which hardly anyone had any knowledge, and then one day you walk into church and everything is in English. Men like Wycliff and Tyndale, and many more, gave their lives to make that happen.
Imagine entering church and watching a priest standing at a distant altar with his back to you and murmuring in Latin. That was pre-reformation. In a post-reformation service the minister faced thee congregation and addressed them in English. Imagine hearing: Petite, et dabitur vobis; querite, et invenietis, et aperietur vobis and then hearing “Ask and it shall be given you; seek and you shall find; knock and it shall be opened unto you.”
ISA 28:9 "To whom would He teach knowledge? And to whom would He interpret the message? Those just weaned from milk? Those just taken from the breast?
ISA 28:10 "For He says, 'Order on order, order on order [command upon command], Line on line, line on line [verses upon verses], A little here, a little there [many writers].'"
It is perfectly placed right here in this prophecy, that since Israel wouldn’t learn in their own tongue and during peace-time, that God would now teach them in a foreign tongue and with war.
ISA 28:11 Indeed, He will speak to this people Through stammering lips and a foreign tongue,
Gentile tongues would teach Israel in war what God tried to teach them in their own tongue during peace-time. At Pentecost, Jews would speak the gospel in Gentile tongues.
The Assyrians and Babylonians would teach Israel and Judah the truth in war and oppression that God taught them in peace-time. These foreign nations spoke foreign tongues.
This very thing would be repeated at Pentecost, where Peter would quote this verse. Jews would communicate the gospel of the risen Savior who had died for His people in the tongues of Gentiles.
ACT 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance.
ACT 2:5 Now there were Jews living in Jerusalem, devout men, from every nation under heaven.
ACT 2:6 And when this sound occurred, the multitude came together, and were bewildered, because they were each one hearing them speak in his own language.
ACT 2:7 And they were amazed and marveled, saying, "Why, are not all these who are speaking Galileans?
ACT 2:8 "And how is it that we each hear them in our own language to which we were born?
ACT 2:9 "Parthians and Medes and Elamites, and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia,
ACT 2:10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the districts of Libya around Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes,
ACT 2:11 Cretans and Arabs — we hear them in our own tongues speaking of the mighty deeds of God."
ACT 2:12 And they all continued in amazement and great perplexity, saying to one another, "What does this mean?"
ACT 2:13 But others were mocking and saying, "They are full of sweet wine."
The Corinthians were blessed to have many members with the gift of tongues. In his letter (1Co 14), Paul instructed them how to use it properly and made clear that the gift was in known languages.
1CO 14:20 Brethren, do not be children in your thinking; yet in evil be babes, but in your thinking be mature.
1CO 14:21 In the Law it is written, "By men of strange tongues and by the lips of strangers I will speak to this people, and even so they will not listen to Me," says the Lord.
1CO 14:22 So then tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe, but to unbelievers; but prophecy is for a sign, not to unbelievers, but to those who believe.
In our day, the uttering of unmeaning gibberish is as far from this as it gets. It betrays the ignorance and pride of those who claim it is a meaningful gift from the Holy Spirit.