A Reformation Guide to Scripture
The Prologues from the Geneva Bible 1560
As has so often happened in the history of God’s people, the persecution of gospel believers instigated by Mary Tudor (Queen of England from 1553 to 1558), helped to promote rather than hinder the spread of the gospel. One evidence of this is the Geneva Bible of 1560.
A small band of exiled English scholars produced an outstanding Bible version. By its sheer excellence it became immensely popular. Its forceful and vigorous language helped make the Geneva Bible so popular that it passed through more than 150 editions! It was still in widespread use in the middle of the following century. It was the Bible taken to America by the Mayflower Pilgrims, and its influence in spreading true biblical Christianity to the ends of the earth is incalculable.
These entries, taken from the first edition of the Geneva Bible, are the compiled introductions or prologues to the books of the Bible, together with the translator’s letter to Queen Elizabeth, urging her to assist in building up the church in England. It also includes their letter to ‘our beloved in the Lord’, the Bible-reading Christians of the British Isles.
The prologues each present, in a succinct and pithy way, the ‘argument’ or theme of each Biblical book. Thus the reader acquires a rapid overview of the whole Bible, as seen through the eyes of the exiles. The book is now republished with the prayer that these prologues will help today’s readers to see the scope of each biblical book and taste the ‘riches of true knowledge and heavenly wisdom’ which the Geneva translators found there.