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  • Abraham Lincoln on Criticism

    "If I were to try to read, much less answer, all the attacks made on me, this shop might as well be closed for any other business. I do the very best I know how - the very best I can; and I mean to keep doing so until the end. If the end brings me out all right, what's said against me won't amount to anything. If the end brings me out wrong, ten angels swearing I was right would make no difference."
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    "Never, never, never believe any war will be smooth and easy, or that anyone who embarks on the strange voyage can measure the tides and hurricanes he will encounter. The statesman who yields to war fever must realize that once the signal is given, he is no longer the master of policy but the slave of unforeseeable and uncontrollable events." ~Winston Churchill
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    It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or whether the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena; Whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes up short again and again; Who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spends himself in a worthy cause; Who, at best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement; And who at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly. It is far better to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight of life, knowing neither victory nor defeat. ~ Theodore Roosevelt
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  • The Reformed Pastor – Richard Baxter

    “We must carry on our work with patience. We must bear with many abuses and injuries from those to whom we seek to do good. When we have studied for them, and prayed for them, and exhorted them, and beseeched them with all earnestness and condescension, and given them what we are able, and tended them as if they had been our children, we must look that many of them will requite us with scorn and hatred and contempt, and account us their enemies, because we ‘tell them the truth.’ Now, we must endure all this patiently, and we must unweariedly hold on in doing good, ‘in meekness instructing those that oppose themselves, if God, peradventure, will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth.’ We have to deal with distracted men who will fly in the face of their physician, but we must not, therefore, neglect their cure. He is unworthy to be a physician, who will be driven away from a frenetic patient by foul words. Yet, alas, when sinners reproach and slander us for our love, and are more ready to spit in our faces, than to thank us for our advice, what heart-risings will there be, and how will the remnants of old Adam (pride and passion) struggle against the meekness and patience of the new man! And how sadly do many ministers come off under such trials!”
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Tyndale by David Teems

Tyndale by David Teems wasn’t an easy book to read, but nonetheless, I am very glad I took the time to read it. Though not much is known about Willian Tyndale, the author was able to piece together a pretty good picture through his research into other men’s lives who were his contemporaries.

Tyndale was a Bible translator during the time of Henry VIII, Thomas Moore and Martin Luther, in the early 1500’s. His mission in life placed him in the category of “heretic” by the Catholic church because he went against the popular thought that the Word of God should be left in it’s original language, readable only by the church leaders at the time. It was his contention that everyone ought to have a copy of the Bible in their own language and he targeted the ploughboy, the one considered the least educated at the time.

His books, whether it be the ones he wrote to refute the popular beliefs of the day, or his translation of the New Testament itself, were subject to burning if confiscated by the religious authorities of the Catholic church who controlled almost every part of English life. I was amazed at what length Tyndale went to in order to get the Truth out, including working in secret, in exile, and threat of death by burning.

I was also intrigued while reading about Henry VIII, Thomas Moore, Marin Luther, etc. I knew Thomas Moore wrote Utopia, but was unfamiliar with his crusade against Tyndale and his work in translating the Word. Moore was quite ruthless and made it his mission to discredit the men involved in the reformation. He especially hated Luther and Tyndale, though he treated Luther with a vehement hatred that spilled over into his language, as did Luther’s when answering Moore’s criticisms. I was quite surprised at the vulgar way in which they argued, yet when it came to Thomas Moore’s description of Tyndale and his accusations of heresy toward the translator, Moore toned down his language toward the man out of his awe for Tyndale’s well known personal Christian testimony and reputation. This in itself convinced me of Tyndale’s desire to serve God in all circumstances and persecutions, for if your enemies treat you with respect, there is a good chance your walk with God have been seen by those around you. Tyndale is historically described as an honest and trustworthy man, who in his daily living reflected Christ in every area.

In the end when he was betrayed by who the thought was a friend and eventually strangled and burned, he was able to maintain his faith and a peaceful calm that could only have come from God Himself. I would recommend this book to anyone who would like to learn more about Tyndale and those who lived around him. It created a better understanding of the hardships men suffered to bring us the Word of God in the English language.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through BookSneeze(R).com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

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