Sunday, June 10, 2018

Erasmus: minority report

Sunday, June 10, 2018
May my cry come before you, O LORD;
    give me understanding according to your word.
May my supplication come before you;
    deliver me according to your promise.
May my lips overflow with praise,
    for you teach me your decrees.
May my tongue sing of your word,
    for all your commands are righteous.
    —Psalm 119:169-172 (NIV)
    I vehemently dissent from those who would not have private persons read the Holy Scriptures nor have them translated into the vulgar tongues... I would wish that all women—girls even—would read the Gospels and the letters of Paul. I wish that they were translated into all languages of all people... To make them understood is surely the first step. It may be that they might be ridiculed by many, but some would take them to heart. I long that the husbandman should sing portions of them to himself as he follows the plough, that the weaver should hum them to the tune of his shuttle, that the traveller should beguile with their stories the tedium of his journey.
    ... Desiderius Erasmus (1466?-1536), preface to the first edition of his Greek New Testament [1516], quoted in Erasmus: a study of his life, ideals and place in history, Preserved Smith, Harper & Brothers, 1923, p. 184 (see the book)
    See also Ps. 119:169-172; Deut. 6:7; Ps. 40:9-10; 78:4; Matt. 12:34-35; John 17:8; Col. 4:6
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, fill my life with Your word.
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