- T o t h e R e d e r .
- T o t h e R e d e r .
- GEve diligence Reder (J exhorte the) that thou come with a pure mynde/ and as the scripture sayth with a syngle eye/ vnto the wordes of health/ and of eternall lyfe: by the which (if we repent and beleve them) we are borne a newe/ created a fresshe/ and enioye the frutes off the bloud of Christ. Whiche bloud cryeth not for vengeaunce/ as the bloud of Abel: but hath purchased/ lyfe/ love/ faveour/ grace/ blessynge/ and whatsoever is promysed in the scriptures/ to them that beleve and obeye God: and stondeth bitwene vs and wrathe/ vengeaunce/ cursse/ and whatsoever the scripture threateneth agaynst the vnbelevers and disobedient/ which resist/ and consent not in their hertes to the lawe of god/ that it is ryght/ wholy/ iuste/ and ought soo to be.
Marke the playne and manyfest places of the scriptures/ and in doutfull places/ se thou adde no interpretacion contrary to them: but (as Paul sayth) let all be conformable and agreynge to the fayth.
Note the difference of the lawe/ and of the gospell. The one axeth and requyreth/ the wother perdoneth and forgeveth. The one threateneth/ the wother promyseth all good thynges/ to them that sett their trust in Christ only. The gospell signifieth gladde tydynges/ and is nothynge butt the promyses off good thynges. All is not gospell that is written in the gospell boke: For if the lawe were a waye/ thou couldest not know what the gospell meante. Even as thou couldest not se perdon/ favour/ and grace/ excepte the lawe rebuked the/ and declared vnto thy thet sinne/ mysdede/ and treaspase.
Repent and beleve the gospell as sayth Christ | in the fyrst of Marke. Applye all waye the lawe to thy dedes/ whether thou finde luste in the bottom of thyne herte to the lawe warde: and soo shalt thou no dout repent/ and fealein the silfe a certayne sorowe/ payne/ and grefe to thyne herte: because thou canst nott with full luste do the dedes of the lawe. Applye the gospell/ that is to saye the promyses/ vnto the deservynge off Christ/ and to the mercye of god and his trouth/ and soo shalt thou nott despeare: butt shalt feale god as a kynde and a mercifull father. And his sprete shall dwell in the/ and shall be stronge in the: and the promises shal be geven the at the last (though not byand by/ lest thou shuldest forgett thy sylfe/ and be negligent) and all threatenynges shal be forgeven the for Christis blouddis sake/ to whom commit thy silfe all togedder/ with out respect/ other of thy good dedes or of thy badde.
Them that are learned Christenly/ J beseche: for as moche as J am sure/ and my conscience beareth me recorde/ that of a pure entent/ singilly and faythfully J have interpreted itt/ as farre forth as god gave me the gyfte of knowledge/ and vnderstondynge: that the rudnes off the worke noweat the fyrst tyme/ offende them not: but that they consyder howe that I had no man to counterfet/ nether was holpe with englysshe of eny that had interpreted the same/ or soche lyke thinge in the scripture before tyme. Moreover/ even very necessitie and combraunce (God is recorde) above strengthe/ which I will not rehearce/ lest we shulde seme to bost oureselves/ caused that many thynges are lackynge/ whiche necessaryly are | requyred. Count it as a thynge not havynge his full shape/ but as it were borne afore hys tyme/ even as a thing begunne rather then fynnesshed. In tyme to come (yf god have apoynted vs there vnto) we will geve it his full shape: and putt out yf ought be added superfluusly: and adde to yff ought be oversene thorowe negligence: and will enfoarce to brynge to compendeousnes/ that which is nowe translated at the lengthe/ and to geve lyght where it is requyred/ and to seke in certayne places more proper englysshe/ and with a table to expounde the wordes which are nott commenly vsed/ and shewe howe the scripture vseth many wordes/ which are wother wyse vnderstonde of the commen people: and to helpe with a declaracion where one tonge taketh nott another. And will endever oure selves/ as it were to sethe it better/ and to make it more apte for the weake stomakes: desyrynge them that are learned/ and able/ to remember their duetie/ and to helpe there vnto: and to be stowe vnto the edyfyinge of Christis body (which is the congregacion of them that beleve) those gyftes whych they have receaved of god for the same purpose. The grace that commeth of Christ be with them that love hym.
praye for vs.