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Scripture itself in English, but it was restrained, and so consumed: whereby ignorance and blindness so prevailed among the people, till, at the last, it so pleased the goodness of our God to provide a remedy for that mischief, by multiplying good books by the printer's pen, in such sort, as no earthly power was able after that. (though they did their best) to stop the course thereof, were he never so mighty: and all this for the furtherance of Christ's Church.
Wherefore receive (gracious reader) the books here collected and offered to thy hand : and thank God, thou hast them, and read them whilst thou mayst, while time, life, and memory serve thee. In reading whereof, the Lord grant, thou mayst receive no less fruit by them, than the hearty desire of the setter forth is to wish well unto thee. And the same Lord also grant, I beseech him, that this my exhortation and wish so may work in all, that not only the good, but the enemies also, which be not yet won to the word of truth, setting aside all partiality and prejudice of opinion, would with indifferent judgments, bestow some reading and hearing likewise of these, to taste what they do teach, to view their reasons, and to try their spirit; to mark the expositions of Tindal, the arguments of Frith, the articles and allegations of Barnes ; which, if they shall find agreeable to the time and antiquity of the Apostle's doctrine, and touchstone of God's
to use them to their instruction; if not, then to mislike them, as they find cause, after they have first tried them, and not before.
And thus, not to detain thee with longer process, from the reading of better matter, I refer and commend thee and thy studies (gentle reader), with my hearty wish and prayer to the grace of Christ Jesu, and direction of his holy Spirit, desiring thee likewise to do the same for me.
An Account “ of the Life and Story of the true
Servant and Martyr of God, WILLIAM TINDAL; who, for his notable Pains and Travail, may well be called the Apostle of England, in this our latter Age; as he was a special Organ of the Lord appointed, and as God's Mattock to shake the inward Roots and Foundation of the Pope's proud Prelucy." -(Extracted from Fox's Acts and Monuments of the Christian Martyrs.)
William TINDAL, the faithful minister and constant martyr of Christ, was born about the borders of Wales, and brought up from a child in the university of Oxford, where he, by long continuance, grew up and increased as well in the knowledge of tongues and other' liberal arts, as specially in the knowledge of the Scriptures, whereunto his mind was singularly addicted: insomuch, that he lying then in Magdalen Hall, read privily, to certain students and fellows of Magdalen College, some parcel of divinity: instruct