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Episode 17- The Press Behind the Reformation

Adam Ramdin
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Every several hundred years an invention comes along that revolutionises society, fundamentally changing some aspect of our lives. The Gutenberg Press was such an invention, changing communication, making the quick spread of new ideas possible. It had a huge impact on the reformation in the 16th century as it meant copies of the Bible and other tracts could spread far and wide.


Adam Ramdin

Youth Director for the North England Conference of SDA


  • May 10, 2017
    12:00 PM
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Every so often a technological invention comes along that changes everything about the way we live if you're born in this millennium it's likely you're only in a world where there have been smart people the Internet and satellite T.V. These things are as much a part of life today as putting our shoes on in the morning when we leave the house or eating breakfast first thing in the day those who are a little older though remember a world where there was no social media where the Internet was very slow or nonexistent and the idea of taking a photograph on your mobile phone was mind boggling video chat seem way distant in the future and yet today these things are considered normal and a part of life. There was a time where if you wanted to read something then it would have been hand written by someone else books were expensive and hard to come by the materials were costly monks would write on treated skins called vellum and a single copy of the Bible would require three hundred sheep skins or one hundred seventy skins most people could not read and the majority of books were in Latin a language that only the most educated could understand. In the fifteenth century the printing press came along and revolutionized the world of literature fundamentally changing the way that we communicate as it enabled the fast flow of information and led to the quick spread of new ideas want text could be reproduced quickly people have access to read books that they. Didn't have before a previously illiterate populace now turned into a more educated and inquisitive one. The printing press was invented by a German Goldsmith by the name of Johann as Gutenberg the exact date of his birth is not known as he was not a famous man during his lifetime but it is believed he finished working on the printing press and around the year fourteen forty. The first book to be published in several volumes and multiple copies was the Bible in fourteen fifty two the Gutenberg Bibles would prove to be immensely popular will two hundred copies of them being sold before the copying was even complete this was sixty five years before Martin Luther published his ninety five theses and while he was able to preach to only a relatively small number of people the printed page would reach thousands of people in a short space of time and a cross national borders. With the books being translated from LAX in into other languages people naturally began to ask why was mass still being conducted in Latin people began to ask why church service were not conducted in the language that members of society regardless of their wealth or education could actually understand. Gutenberg's printing press made more access to information more detailed discussion and more widespread criticism of the authorities as such the printing press popularized ideas associated with the Protestant faith joining the Reformation allowing the press to shape and channel a mass movement. The printing press removed control over to material from the half. Church and made it difficult for the church when he bit the spread of ideas that they regarded as heretical had it not been for Gutenberg invention the news of Lucas and revolutionary ideas would not have spread as quickly as they did today God has given us technology that we can use to spread ideas very quickly May we use the talents we have the gifts we have and the technology we have to spread the news of Jesus to the world today.


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