"The Geneva Bible has been the lost treasure of Christendom for almost 400 years. Nearly forgotten by the modern world, this version of the Holy Scriptures was translated and compiled by exiled reformers in Geneva (1557-1560) and stands alone in history as the force that transformed the English speaking world from the backwater of history to the center of civilization. The 2006 edition (the edition on this Calvinism CD #1 - ed.) is the first completely new publication of the Geneva Bible available in modern times….
The Geneva Bible literally helped create the modern English language which is the preaching and political language of the world today. With much credit to William Tyndale's linguistic genius and the poetic mastery of Miles Coverdale with his earlier translation of the Poetic Books, the Geneva Bible became the central tool that sparked the literary excellence of the 17th and 18th Centuries in the English speaking world. The Geneva Bible was the Bible of William Shakespeare…, John Bunyan, the Puritans, who were considered history's greatest expositors, and the Pilgrims as they came to America. It was the Bible that John Rolfe would have likely used in the conversion of Pocahontas at Jamestown in 1611. The impact of the annotations and commentary in the Geneva Bible cannot be underestimated. It was the Calvinist notes of the Geneva Bible that infuriated King James I at Hampton Court in 1604 and caused him to authorize a group of Puritan scholars to produce a non-annotated version of the Bible for him. The excellent Authorized Version probably would never have been written had it not been for King James's anger toward the Geneva Bible.
The marginal notes of the Geneva Bible presented a systematic biblical worldview that centered on the Sovereignty of God over all of His creation, including the church and the king. This unique Biblical emphasis, though politically dangerous, was one of the great contributions of John Calvin's influence on the English Reformers. For example, the marginal note in the Geneva Bible for Exodus 1:9 indicated that the Hebrew midwives were correct in disobeying the orders of the Egyptian King. King James railed against such interpretation, calling it "seditious." The tyrant knew that if the people could hold him accountable to God's Word, his days as a "Divine Right" king were numbered. Calvin and the reformers were not going to change the clear meaning of Scripture to cater to the whims of king or Pope. The Geneva Bible began the unstoppable march to liberty in England, Scotland and America.
The marginal notes of the Geneva Bible, along with all of its other unique qualities, led the whole English speaking world away from the ignorance, heresy and tyranny of the Middle Ages into a full understanding of God's Kingdom ruling over all. Calvin and the English reformers who followed in his footsteps and who wrote the Geneva Bible, expounded the whole council of God concerning the liberating doctrines of sola scriptura- the Word of God alone as inspired and directional for our lives and culture, sola fide – faith alone as our only means of justification before God, sola christus – Christ alone as our only mediator, lord and king, sola gratia – grace alone as our only hope of salvation and sanctification, and soli deo Gloria – God alone receiving the glory He is due in heaven and on earth, not king or pope.
These theological articles listed above may seem rudimentary or innocuous when merely listed. But when they were systematically taught from Scripture and applied to life, as was done in the commentary in the Geneva Bible, whole nations were transformed. The knowledge of and obedience to God's written Word led to constitutional, limited government, the end of slavery and the caste system, free enterprise and private property, the Puritan work-ethic which inspired the scientific and industrial revolutions, wholesome, uplifting literature along with cultural optimism and development."
- From the Introduction to the 1599 Geneva Bible by Dr. Marshall Foster, President of the Mayflower Institute and Member of the 1599 Geneva Bible Advisory Board
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