Honor to whom honor is due...

While we're on the subject of money...

Over the years countless times I've given thanks to God, but also to Dad and Mom Taylor (Ken Taylor and Margaret Taylor), for the way they handled the money God poured out on them.

One of the minority of privately held Evangelical publishers left standing today is Tyndale House Publishers and it's owned entirely by Mom Taylor now that her husband, Ken, passed away a few years ago. (Prior to his death, Dad owned 51% and Mom 49%. Sweet, huh?)

Tyndale House has published a number of best sellers and Dad held personal copyright on some of the best-selling books in the Evangelical publishing world including the Living Bible and The Bible in Pictures for Little Eyes. Then of course, Tyndale's goose that lay ten thousand golden eggs was Jerry Jenkins and Tim LaHaye's Left Behind series which reached sales (books and related merchandise) of over a billion dollars.

Add up the numbers and you'll see how high on the hog Dad and Mom could have lived and how much money they could have left their children...

Although they have been extraordinarily generous to their children and grandchildren, their money has not gone to their family, but to the work of the Lord. And when Mom passes into the presence of the Lord, all of Tyndale House will be owned by Tyndale House Foundation--not the family. Even the family home and land will go to Wycliffe Bible Translator's Seed Company.

Countless ministries, churches, seminaries, missions, and charitable works owe their existence to the godly liberality of Dad and Mom Taylor.

Could it have been otherwise?

Yes, and had it been otherwise, it's likely I would have been corrupted by the deceitfulness of wealth. You see why I praise God for Dad and Mom? As anyone in Wheaton can attest, they lived (and Mom still lives) frugally and humbly. And trust me, some quite famous authors would be embarrassed to have a comparison of the lifestyle they and their family members have as a result of Tyndale House royalties if it were compared to their publisher and his descendants.

One final more personal note. Readers who have been on Baylyblog for years know how intense I am and have been in opposing gender and race neutered Evangelical Bible translations. Maybe only one Bible translation of the past twenty years has escaped these corruptions and, sadly, Tyndale House Publishers led the way with their New Living Translation. My criticism of their work on the NLT began in our family kitchen about twenty years ago, now, when Dad brought home the NLT's galley proofs of Romans and I saw 'adelphoi' had been mistranslated 'Christian friends.'

That said, each summer we gather as the Taylor clan up at what we call "the Michigan House." Mom is the queen bee and her descendants now include 28 grandchildren (our Taylor is the youngest) and around 55 great grandchildren. We eat in a tent and a number of us stay in a nearby Super Eight. Which is to point out that we love each other. This is the way across the years.

Now one of Dad and Mom's sons, Mark, is the CEO of Tyndale House. Mark and I have known each other since he was a senior and I a sophomore in our church's youth group. Mark and I have talked and e-mailed each other about our disagreements concerning Bible translation and there have been times our relationship almost didn't survive. But God has been kind to us. The love of Christ has prevailed and we have continued to love each another despite our deep opposition to each other's work surrounding the New Living Translation.

A couple months ago I told Mark how very thankful I was for his godly character evident in his marriage and fatherhood, but also in his leadership of Tyndale House Publishers. As I said to him, he could have profited from his leadership of Tyndale House for the benefit of his own home and family, but he's never built himself a dream home or bought a fancy car and his children have never had the edge taken off their difficult years as young couples raising little children and struggling to get by. So this is my tribute to another Evangelical leader who is unlike a number visible in an earlier post, but rather quite like John and Noel Piper.

Praise God for Dad and Mom Taylor's godly and holy example of not allowing wealth to deceive them, but rather giving it all away. Now, praise God for Mark and his most excellent wife, Carol, who are themselves setting the same example to all of us watching and cheering them on.

With deep gratitude to God, I present Tyndale House Foundation IRS Form 990 (2010).

(TB)

Comments

Beautiful. Grandpa Taylor's example has served to preserve me as well as I work neck deep in the deceitfulness of money in the financial field. His godly example (and that of Mark too) has given me the strength that I need to fight the daily temptation to greed. Praise God for both of them.

I'll never forget the time I worked for Mom and Dad Taylor refinishing their kitchen cabinets when I was a student at Wheaton. I gave him a labor bill and he came back the next time with payment, explaining that he couldn't find anyone who would do what I did for twice what I was charging him. So he wrote the check for 2 1/2 times the amount of the bill. His generosity made a profound impact on me and I have repeated the story often over the years. What faithful servants!

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