A TIME WHEN THE BIBLE WAS BANNED AND BURNED

 

A  TIME  WHEN  THE  BIBLE  WAS  BANNED
AND  BURNED – By The Apostate Christian Church

A  TIME  WHEN  THE  BIBLE  WAS  BANNED
AND  BURNED – By The Apostate Christian Church

Many people are unaware of the fact that there 
was a long period of time, when the Church of
Christendom – forbid the reading of the Bible.

Not only did she forbid the reading of the Bible,
but she also forbid having posession of a Bible
in one’s own home.

These were called the “Dark Ages” for obvious 
reasons.  The Apostate Church of Christendom was
at the peak of her power, and was afraid that if
her subjects owned and read Bibles, that they might
question some of the Church’s actions and teachings.

“During the Dark Ages (A.D. 500-1500),  
Rome burned Bibles along with their owners.”
-The Baptist Pillar
CANADA’S ONLY TRUE BAPTIST PAPER  
Published by Bible Baptist Church

This was a time, when not only was the Bible banned,
but literacy in general was prohibited and frowned
upon.  Very few people during this time knew how to
read or write.  Again, the Apostate Church was
determined that the less knowledge that people had,
the more easy it would be to rule them. 

“Only ten percent of people 
in the Roman Empire could read…
and those were generally in the wealthy 
upper classes.” 
-River of God, 
Gregory J. Riley, pp. 66

The Church admits this in her own Laws :

“Canon 14. We prohibit also that the laity should 
not be permitted to have the books of the Old or 
New Testament; we most strictly forbid their having 
any translation of these books.”
– The Church Council of Toulouse 1229 AD
Source: Heresy and Authority in Medieval Europe,
Scolar Press, London, England
copyright 1980 by Edward Peters,
ISBN 0-85967-621-8, pp. 194-195

The Council of Tarragona of 1234, 
in its second canon, ruled that:

“No one may possess the books of the Old 
and New Testaments, and if anyone possesses 
them he must turn them over to the local bishop 
within eight days, so that they may be burned…”
– The Church Council of Tarragona 1234 AD; 
2nd Cannon – Source : D. Lortsch, 
Historie de la Bible en France, 1910, p.14.

“Opened on Thursday alongside the Inquisition
archives was the infamous Index of Forbidden Books, 
which Roman Catholics were forbidden to read 
or possess on pain of excommunication. They showed 
that even “the Bible” was once on the blacklist.
 
Translations of the holy book ended up on the bonfires
along with other “heretical” works…The Index
of Forbidden Books and all excommunications relating 
to it were officially abolished in 1966. The Inquisition
itself was established by Pope Gregory IX in 1233….”
-Vatican archives reveal Bible was once banned book
    By Jude Webber
ROME, Jan 22, 1998 (Reuters)

“Canon 14.   We prohibit also that the laity should be
permitted to have the books of the Old or New Testament; 
…we most strictly forbid their having any translation 
of these books.”
– ITEM #2   COUNCIL OF TOULOUSE – 1229 A.D.
   Heresy and Authority in Medieval Europe, 
 Edited with an introduction by Edward Peters, 
    Scolar Press, London, copyright 1980 
  by Edward Peters, ISBN 0-85967-621-8, pp. 194-195
–After the death of Innocent III, the Synod of Toulouse 
directed in 1229 its fourteenth canon against the misuse 
of Sacred Scripture on the part of the athari: 
“prohibemus, ne libros Veteris et Novi Testamenti 
    laicis permittatur habere” 
 (Hefele, “Concilgesch”, Freiburg, 1863, V, 875).

ITEM #3   THE COUNCIL OF TARRAGONA – 1234 A.D.
The Council of Tarragona of 1234, in its second canon, 
ruled that:
“No one may possess the books of the Old and New 
Testaments
 in the Romance language, and if anyone 
possesses them he must turn them over to the local
bishop within eight days after promulgation of 
this decree, so that they may be burned….”
– D. Lortsch, Historie de la Bible en France, 1910, p.14.

ITEM #6  THE BIBLE PROHIBITED BY 
THE INDEX LIBRORUM PROHIBITORUM

Pope Pius IV had a list of the forbidden books compiled
and officially prohibited them in the Index of Trent 
(Index Librorum Prohibitorum) of 1559. 
This is an excerpt :

Whoever reads or has such a translation in his 
possession
… cannot be absolved from his sins 
until he has turned in these Bibles
…Books in the
vernacular dealing with the controversies between
Catholics and the heretics of our time are not to be 
generally permitted, but are to be handled in the 
same way as Bible translations…”
– Rule IV & Rule VI
  Die Indices Librorum Prohibitorum des sechzehnten
  Jahrhunderts (Tübingen, 1886), page 246f.
Source: The Reformation, by Hans J. Hillerbrand, 
copyright 1964 by SCM Press Ltd and Harper and Row,Inc.,
 Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 64-15480, 
    pages 474, 475.

History’s Most Indestructable Book

Many dictators have attempted to wipe 
the Bible from existence. Yet it has 
withstood all these attacks, remaining 
the most popular book in the world. 
More copies of the Bible are sold every year
than any other book, despite its image as 
being “out of date.” 

Christendom Becomes – An Enemy of the bible 
Christendom – as a political power

Unfortunately, this ultimately led to 
persecution again as the church quickly 
became a powerful political force, used to 
control public opinion and political ambitions.

The Bible continued to be attacked, now from 
within the church. Bibles in common languages 
such as Greek were outlawed. The Latin Vulgate 
Bible was produced and carefully controlled, 
readable only by specially trained representatives 
of the church. Laws were issued making it illegal 
for any Christian to possess a Bible. Penalties 
included burning at the stake. During the Dark Ages 
even priests were unable to read the Scriptures 
for themselves. As a result, they were unable to 
compare the false doctrines sweeping through the
Roman church against the doctrines of the 
Word of God. In Italy, it was still illegal to 
own a Bible until 1870!

Political ambitions led to such crimes as the 
Crusader Wars, purported to be in the name of 
Christ but having no relationship with any 
Christian doctrine. Christianity was primarily 
an excuse used to give them credibility. Since 
the people had no Bibles to check such things for 
themselves, they were at the mercy of the corrupt 
religiious leaders behind these efforts.

“The Roman Catholic Church has traditionally 
suppressed, opposed, and forbidden the open use 
of the Bible. It was first officially forbidden 
to the people and placed on the index of Forbidden 
Books List by the Council of Valencia in 1229 A.D. 
The Council of Trent (1545-63 A.D.) also prohibited 
its use and pronounced a curse upon anyone who would 
dare oppose this decree. Many popes have issued 
decrees forbidding Bible reading in the common 
language of the people, condemning Bible societies 
and banning its possession and translation under 
penalty of mortal sin and death. The Roman Catholic 
Church has openly burned Bibles and those who 
translated it or promoted its study, reading, and use.
(John Hus, 1415 A.D.; William Tyndale, 1536 A.D.)”
-Christian Equippers International, 
2941 Lake Tahoe Blvd,  
South Lake Tahoe 96150

1525: Six thousand copies of William Tyndale’s 
English translation of the New Testament were 
printed in Cologne, Germany, and smuggled into 
England—and then burned by the English church.

 

“Tyndale wrote that the Church authorities 
banned translation into the mother tongue 
“to keep the world still in darkness, 
to the intent they might sit through vain 
superstition and false doctrine, to satisfy 
their filthy lusts, their proud ambition, 
and insatiable covetousness, and to exalt their 
own honour… above God himself.” “
–William Tyndale’s New Testament. 
Worms (Germany), 1526
British Library C.188.a.17
Copyright © The British Library Board
ONLINE GALLERY
LANDMARKS IN PRINTING

 

“Tyndale’s New Testament was the first to be 
printed in English. There are only two complete 
copies surviving from the 3,000 or more printed 
in 1526 by Peter Schoeffer in the German city 
of Worms. Tyndale’s translation was pronounced 
heretical in England, so his Bibles were smuggled 
into the country in bales of cloth. Those discovered 
owning them were punished. At first only the books 
were destroyed, but soon heretics (those found with 
the Bibles) would be burned too – including Tyndale
himself in 1536.”
-William Tyndale’s New Testament. 
Worms (Germany), 1526
British Library C.188.a.17
Copyright © The British Library Board
ONLINE GALLERY
LANDMARKS IN PRINTING

“For 600 years the Roman Catholic Church 
attempted to keep translations of the Bible 
out of the hands of the people. Bible-believing
people were mercilessly persecuted and their 
Scriptures were destroyed. Those who possessed 
Bibles without a license were commanded to 
deliver them up to the Catholic authorities 
under threat of inquisition terrors. Booksellers 
were forbidden to sell any Bibles except to 
people who possessed a license from the Catholic
church. Huge quantities of Scriptures in English, 
Germany, Italian, French, Spanish, and in other 
languages, were confiscated and destroyed 
throughout the 13th to the 19th centuries. 
Bible translators and distributors were imprisoned 
and burned. Even after the Catholic inquisition 
was outlawed in many lands in the 18th and 19th 
centuries, the popes continued to condemn the free
distribution of Scripture.”
-ROME AND THE BIBLE: 
TRACING THE HISTORY 
OF THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH 
AND ITS PERSECUTION OF THE BIBLE 
AND OF BIBLE BELIEVERS, by David W. Cloud, 
Way of Life Literature, copyright 1996.

 

“In Roman-dominated lands, the Bible was almost 
an unknown book among the common people. The Bible 
in Rome is a strange and rare book. Indeed very few
of the common people know what we mean by the Bible.”
-ROME AND THE BIBLE: 
TRACING THE HISTORY 
OF THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH 
AND ITS PERSECUTION OF THE BIBLE 
AND OF BIBLE BELIEVERS, by David W. Cloud, 
Way of Life Literature, copyright 1996.

 

“Book burnings which included Bibles 
were common after 1521. Sometimes the 
translators and publishers themselves 
were also burned. Possession of Bibles became 
criminal offenses and often resulted in the 
execution of the accused. There are cases on 
record of people executed by order of church 
for the “crime” teaching their children 
the Lord’s Prayer or the Ten Commandments 
in their own native tongue.”
-What Happened this Day in Church History
June 13, 1757 • The Bible in Many Tongues.
Christian History Institute

“In the two decades after Wycliffe’s death, 
many Lollards were burned at the stake, 
some even with their Bibles hanging from 
their necks to be burned with them.”
-Ron Minton, 
The Making and Preservation of the Bible 
(n.p.; November, 2000) 216.

“By 1408 even reading the Bible in English 
was outlawed.”
– F. F. Bruce, PP 20-23
History of the Bible in English, 3rd ed. 
(New York: Oxford University Press, 1978)

“One of Wycliffe’s followers, John Hus, 
actively promoted Wycliffe’s ideas: 
that people should be permitted to read 
the Bible in their own language, 
and they should oppose the tyranny 
of the Roman church that threatened 
anyone possessing a Bible with execution. 
Hus was burned at the stake in 1415, 
with Wycliffe’s manuscript Bibles used 
as kindling for the fire. The Catholic 
Church excommunicated Hus in 1411 and 
burned him at the stake in Constance on 
July 6, 1415, having condemned him by 
the Council of Constance, in an unfair trial.”
-English Bible History; “John Hus”
GREATSITE.COM; the online showroom of 
The Bible Museum, Inc. Since 1987

Burned at the Stake
For Owning A Bible

Burned at the Stake
For Owning A Bible

“During the Dark Ages (A.D. 500-1500),  
Rome burned Bibles along with their owners.”
-The Baptist Pillar
CANADA’S ONLY TRUE BAPTIST PAPER  
Published by Bible Baptist Church

“In the two decades after Wycliffe’s death, 
many Lollards were burned at the stake, 
some even with their Bibles hanging from 
their necks to be burned with them
.”
-Ron Minton, 
The Making and Preservation of the Bible 
(n.p.; November, 2000) 216.

“October 6, 1998 marks 462 years since another 
Christian was burned at the stake for his 
translation and distribution of the English Bible.”
-The Bible Gateway; 
Topic : “William Tyndale”
Bible.Org.com
Tom White and Steve Cleary,
“The Smuggler,” The Voice of the Martyrs, 
October, 1998, pp. 3-4

“Owning a Bible in English,
or even quoting Scripture in English, 
meant death for countless men and women of God.”
-1376-Indestructible Book: Story of the Bible
Bestselling Catholic Videos 
in English and Spanish Languages
Largest Roman Catholic Marian Resource

“Many people died at the stake 
for owning a Bible, or for helping 
to translate one, or for distributing
them to others.”
– Sermon of 
Rev. Orland Wolfram (1912-1987) 
Pillar of Fire Church 
Missionary to Guatemala

“The principal accusation against those 
who are subject to… (the inquisition)
is heresy…of such who read the Bible 
in the common language

Upon all occasions the inquisitors carry on 
their processes with the utmost severity, 
and punish those who offend them 
with the most unparalleled cruelty.”
-Fox’s Book of Martyrs; Chapter 5
   An Account of the Inquisition 
    Author: John Foxe (1516-1587)

Taking the Bible for Granted

Many people today, ridicule those who search 
the scriptures for truth.  And even many of
my readers make fun of me and say that I should
not take the Bible so seriously.  I am told
to lighten up.  But I know that Jesus replied
to almost all of the questions that were 
presented to him, by quoting from the Bible’s
Old Testament (Hebrew Scriptures).  I know too,
that the apostles and early christians died for
their belief in the Bible’s laws and principals.

How did Jesus View the Bible ?
(click-here)

Through the centuries, courageous men and women 
have treasured the Scriptures and have struggled 
to preserve and disseminate them amid great 
opposition. Some, as we have seen, have even died 
to get the Bible into the hands of the common 
person. Their sacrifices should inspire us to a 
greater study and application of the Bible’s 
teachings. Yet many today take owning a Bible 
for granted. Nevertheless, surveys reveal that 
fewer than half of Americans can even name the 
first four books of the New Testament.

The words of the Bible are of no value as mere 
letters on paper. They must live in the minds 
of people through the Spirit of God.

The Bible is a precious heritage and a priceless 
gift. It reveals the true God and his Son, 
Jesus Christ, the Savior of all humanity. 
Realizing that God inspired many dedicated 
Christians to great personal sacrifices should 
motivate us to value the precious heritage of 
the Bible. The once-forbidden book now lies open 
— to you!

 

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