Geneva Bible

The movie Book of Eli starring Denzel Washington was based on the theme of the importance of the Bible with regard to rebuilding the world after a nuclear war. Denzel played a character who was heading to the western United States in order to share the last Bible on earth with a group of people who would translate and reprint the Bible in order to make available to the people once again. Apparently the writers of the plot of this story understood the importance of the Bible in world history. It has made major cultural changes whenever the people have access to its contents. 

With regard to America, the Geneva Bible was instrumental in our founding. For both the Pilgrims and Puritans, who were the earliest settlers of America, the Bible they brought with them from the European continent was the Geneva Bible. They used the Bible as a pattern for building a new world based on biblical principles of self-government and personal liberties. Our form of republic government got it basic structure of divided government from their Presbyterian church governments. The Geneva Bible supplied them with many of the ideas they applied to building a nation based on biblical revelation.

King James hated the Geneva Bible because it taught that kings were to be subservient to God and rule as servant leaders to their people. If they king acted like a tyrant the Bible justifies opposing that king and even removing the tyrant from office. Many of these ideas were later adopted by our Founding Fathers to hold King George accountable for his tyranny against American citizens, many of whom were loyal to the English government. However, with his continued tyranny the Presbyterian church leaders in America taught that the people did not have to obey the tyrant king. In fact, many taught it was their Christian duty to oppose the tyranny of such a lawless king. When King George heard about the unrest in America, he blamed it on the black robed regiment, which was in reference to the Presbyterian pastors who wore black robes in the pulpit. 

The historic reality is that the church leaders played a major role in leading the American fight for liberty from the tyranny of King George.  The ideas contained in the Bible have always had a major impact in cultural transformation. The script writers in the movie The Book of Levi showed in this movie why the tyrant who confronted Eli wanted to possess the bible he was carrying. He knew it was a powerful book that could threaten his tyrannical control over the people he governed over.  The following video clip describes the impact of the Geneva Bible in more detail.