A summary of our captivity and freedom

William Tyndale lived from about 1494 to 1536.

The fall of Adam has made us heirs of the vengeance and wrath of God, and heirs of eternal damnation. It has brought us into captivity and bondage under the devil. The devil is our lord, our ruler, our head, our governor, our prince and our god. And our will is locked and knit closer to the will of the devil than could a hundred thousand chains bind a man to a post. To the devil’s will we consent with all our hearts, with all our minds,with all our might, power, strength, will and lusts. The law and will of the devil is written in our hearts as well as in our members. We run headlong after the devil with full zeal, and the whole force of all the power we have; just as a stone cast up into the air comes down naturally of its own accord, with all the violence and force of its own weight. With what poisonous, deadly and venomous hate does a man hate his enemy! With what great malice of mind, inwardly, do we slay and murder! With what violence and rage, and with what fervent lust do we commit adultery, fornication and such like uncleanness! With what pleasure and delight, inwardly, does a glutton serve his belly! With what diligence do we deceive! How busily do we seek the things of this world! Whatever we do, think, or imagine, is abominable in the sight of God. For we give no honour to God; his law, or will, is not written in our members or in our hearts; neither is there any more power in us to follow the will of God, than in a stone to ascend upward by itself. And besides that, we are as it were asleep in such deep blindness, that we can neither see nor feel the misery, slavery and wretchedness we are in, until Moses comes and wakes us, and publishes the law.