“Before Martin Luther there was John Huss, the Bohemian Goose whose gospel preaching set his country on fire. Huss was an early Reformer who was given the incomparable privilege of sealing his testimony with his own blood. His enemies seemed to triumph, but the joke was on them. Enjoy this modern telling of the captivating tragicomedy.” — Pastor Luke Walker of Redeeming Cross Community Church
Christian biographies are excellent means of communicating stories of God’s gracious providence. For the busy Christian who already has a stack of books on the “to-read” pile, Pastor Walker has given us a few highlights, or headlines from church history which allow us a glimpse into the faithfulness of the brethren who have preceded us. John Huss, The Goose is no exception!
The Reformation Predicted
I hope I’m not spoiling the book by telling you of the well-known story of John Huss, who, when he was burned by the Roman Catholic Church in the early 15th century, seemed to predict the start of the Reformation and Martin Luther when he said, “Today you burn a goose, but in one hundred years a swan will arise which you will prove unable to boil or roast.” (Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses about 102 years after that statement.
But for the average 21st (or even 20th) century Christian, it can actually be hard to imagine a world before Protestantism. In a sense, I (and you maybe too?) take for granted the truths which have been gloriously propounded by the reformers, and are readily available to us in our language. We also enjoy a separation of the State from our church.
John Huss, The Goose takes you back to a time BEFORE reformation. It brings understanding and appreciation for the wonderful benefits we now enjoy, and the great sacrifices paid for our benefit. Eye opening, indeed!
Preaching Is God’s Way
- It seems there is hardly a doctrine or practice that is under as much attack from both within and outside the church than the practice of preaching. Walker brilliantly portrays John Huss, the preacher, to us. He was “famous among all the churches for his preaching of the gospel (Walker, pg 7), and was a man who faced fear! He was courageous and should be an inspiration to us all.
- On his final day he said, “I shall die with joy today in the faith of the Gospel which I have preached, (Walker, pg 44). What a man!
- Revival or reformation seems to always be accompanied by faithful men preaching, both biblically speaking and throughout church history.
- He was a man of conviction. Huss was not afraid to call Popes “antichrists” (you must remember, the Pope in that day was very powerful throughout Europe), and not willing to follow the orders of ungodly leaders, even in the church. He lived at a time when there were 3 Popes simultaneously and wonderfully argued why each of them were unqualified to lead God’s church!
- He was labeled the obstinate heretic because of his insistence upon appealing to the Scriptures for his defense of his preaching and writing. Oh that we may all be more like “The Goose” in our everyday discourse.
Go Get It
What are you waiting for? Go buy this book and enjoy learning about this blessed man of God. And pay attention to the repeated and not always italicized plays on the term goose. It truly made this little tome fun to read.