A Changed Clerk

Wednesday, May 17

[I’m indebted to Dr. Stephen Nichols and the podcast “Five Mins in Church History” for this one.]  John Bradford was born in 1510 just before the Protestant Reformation.  He became a clerk under King Henry the 8th.  By this time the Reformation had spread to England King Henry himself espoused it and led England away from the Roman Church.  Bradford heard the gospel and became a believer.  Bradford had embezzled a good deal of public funds and determined to restore all that he had stolen.  He then became a pastor in a little town outside London and was a good shepherd of the flock.  But in 1553 Mary became Queen and began to ruthlessly wipe out the Protestants and restore the Catholic church to it’s former power.  She soon became known as “Bloody Mary.”  Among others, Bradford was held in the Tower of London, with the intent that he would in time recant, which he staunchly refused to do.  After two years of imprisonment, he was condemned to death.  In July of 1555 he was burned at the stake.  His parting words were for England to wake up and follow the truth.  Later, it was said of him “He lived a long life in a short period of time.”  What a beautiful epitaph!  A whole lot better than to “live a short life in a long period of time.”

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