Tuesday, April 17, 2012

How Much Does the Gospel Cost?

Well at least according to one sale, fourteen million dollars. The British Library just bought Europe's oldest book, which happens to be a copy of the gospel according to St. John. The book itself, a smart little volume, written on vellum and bound in a red cover, is known as St. Cuthbert's Gospel because it was buried with Cuthbert 1300 years ago.

TheWorld did a nice piece about it on today's show. What was remarkable to me was the journey of Cuthbert's coffin after his death. You can listen to the piece here.

And the Library has digitized the book and you can view the images here.

I am struck by the importance this book has, and that it is a biblical book. The images are really stunning. The print is phenomenal. But it is at its heart this book is rooted to the arrival of the gospel in Europe.  This book is a testimony to the missional character of Christianity. Will there be anything a millennia from now that tells of our missional impulse?

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