Puritan Belief

The Puritans are the men of God who started in the 16th century building on the purity of the gospel message that Salvation is by Grace alone.

John Wickliffe - Burnt His Bones

Imagine being so hated and reviled that 41 years after your death your bones were dug up, burned to ashes and thrown into the river in the hope that the memory of your name and doctrines would perish.

Before there was John Knox and Calvin and Luther there was John Wickliffe. (1324-1384)

Most of his life was spent learning and teaching at Oxford's extensive library and was recognised by The Duke of Lancaster as one with extraordinary gifting in theology and preaching.

Controversy - Take 1 - Against Rome
Many of the popes, bishops, priests and clergy were extremely lazy living off the squalor of the Roman Catholic church. John Wickliffe was the first to vehemently oppose them. In reaction the Roman Catholic church issued a "Papal Bull" against him at Oxford to be stepped down and requested that he stand before another hearing which charged him of heresy.

Controversy - Take 2 - The Mass
Unlike many other heretics who would have been hung John Wickliffe was a politically asteemed man and in many ways protected so he next attacked the Mass. Rejecting the transubstantiation and the clerical power of priesthood.

Controversy - Take 3 - AntiChrist
John Wickliffe was one of the first to publicly label the Pope the Antichrist and the church of Rome the whore of Babylon. For the love of God they taught was Universal (define:catholic) in direct opposition to Gods true love.

Controversy of Controversies - Translating the Bible from Latin into English
The bible was read and recorded in Latin so that only the Priests and scholars could understand. It was John Wickliffe who first translated the Latin Vulgate to English and was the first to place the bible into the hands of the people.

Revival - Heralding the Great Awakening
Under Luther and Knox, then Whitefield and Edwards came revival. In my opinion it was John Wickliffe who was heralding these events when the word of God was preached and taught for the first time by many of John Wickliffe's lay preachers who would preach to the peasants and commoners far and abroad distributing the Bible.

Died a Peaceful Death
The Roman Catholic church perhaps from disunity never caught up to John Wickliffe to burn him at the stake. He died from 2 strokes at the ripe old age of 60 (great for back then) (1384)

Burning John Wickliffes Bones
The church of Rome could have no greater fear then the truth of the scripture being in the hands of the people. 41 years later John Wickliffes body was dug up and they burnt his bones to ashes and cast them into the river.

For Further Reading
John Wickliffe Starting the Reformation - A Puritans Mind
An Account of the Life and Persecutions of John Wickliffe - Fox's Book of Martyrs
Profiles in Reform – John Wycliffe – Part 1
"John Wickliffe is known as the morning star of the Reformation"

Add Your Comment(13)

John Wickliffe - Burnt His Bones
Posted by Correy Tuesday, January 24, 2006


Blogger Guy Montag said...

When reading about these fellows, you cannot help but be thankful that God was faithful, to make them faithful. You should also check out John Huss, if you have not already.

January 24, 2006 12:56 PM   Edit
Blogger Daniel said...

Ah, the morning star of the Reformation! John Wycliffe's legacy is incredible. His work still goes on through the vision of Wycliffe Bible Translators.

Good post. What an inspiring biography!

January 24, 2006 2:16 PM   Edit
Blogger Correy said...

Thanks Daniel,

I was wondering about the spelling of his name? Why is it different - Wyclif, Wycliffe, Wickliffe, or Wiclif?

January 24, 2006 2:23 PM   Edit
Blogger Rand said...

You know you've done REAL GOOD in life when the pope wants to rub you out!

Interesting fact: today, many Romanist priests teach that it is good for their flock to read the Bible. Turn the clock back a few hundred years, Romanist priests were burning faithful men who translated the Bible at the stake.

Talk about a REVERSAL!!!

January 24, 2006 2:32 PM   Edit
Blogger Mike said...

The morning star! He is quite a man. I go back and forth between my "favorite" pre-reformation hero between he and Huss.

I've also been confused about the spelling. I've seen it spelled three different ways.
I think Wycliffe is popular right now.

This is a great audio about his life!

January 24, 2006 5:23 PM   Edit
Blogger Daniel said...

The spellings of names in that period often varied depending on the language that was used.

Arminius is another good example. Some folks have his first name as Jacob. Others say it James. The Dutch spelling of his last name is Harmensen. So there's quite a bit of leeway.

January 25, 2006 3:25 AM   Edit
Blogger Mike said...

That's true. Calvin is another example. English and French spellings.


January 25, 2006 8:21 AM   Edit
Blogger Gordon said...

When you think about the persecution that men like Wycliffe, Huss and even some of our brothers and sisters in other countries today are facing, our difficulties in the ministry aren't so big after all.

January 25, 2006 12:47 PM   Edit
Blogger Radical One said...

thanks for the info. i don't study near enough history to be able to appreciate how well we do have it.


January 26, 2006 8:08 AM   Edit
Blogger John Kettner said...

Mr. Belief:

God was very kind in giving such great discernment to Mr. Wycliffe regarding the Antichrist and Mystery Babylon.

You have done the world a great service by keeping his memory alive and honoring the true Holy Father!


February 11, 2006 6:23 AM   Edit
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Anonymous Anonymous said...

The great sadness of the time between the Reformation and the present day is that there are now, throughout the world, 35,000 (approximately) different denominations of non-Catholic Christians. Satan is often called the Devil. The origin of the word devil - "Diablo" - means the Divider a word the opposite to which is Symbol i.e. that which brings us together. Christ's cross is THE symbol. Oddly the Roman Catholic church shows no such collapse of unity. Is it, in fairness, closer to God by this indicator?
Let us not comfort ourselves falsely while the scandal of division within our extraordinary Christian inheritance exists.


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