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Sunday, March 22, 2015

False Jeopardy TV show answer on French martyr: Jean Vallière

Pointing out errors on the Jeopardy TV game show is not the purpose of this blog.  But I heard on their program yesterday, March 20, 2015, an "answer" for the Final Jeopardy "clue" that did not seem correct.  It was about a French martyr, Jean Vallière, and the clue was
Unwanted firsts
Jean Vallière, burned in 1523, was considered the first martyr of this religious group.
 The "correct" answer given was the HUGUENOTS.

This answer puzzled me since the year 1523 seemed much more in the time of the Luther's Reformation, NOT the Huguenots.  The Huguenots were French Calvinists, not Lutherans.  Since my current blog series is about the martyrs of the Lutheran Church,  I first checked Hermann Fick's list of French Lutheran martyrs (Volume 2) but did not see Vallière's name in his list.  The ExecutedToday website seemed to present some strange info on Vallière as being a true heretic ("zany idea that Jesus was the son of Joseph and not God").  So I dug deeper and found the Wikipedia article was quite the opposite saying
Jean Vallière (died 8 August 1523 Paris) was an Augustinian monk burned at the stake for heresy in 1523 for supporting the teachings of Martin Luther.
So the popular TV game show clue writers were wrong, their answer is not correct, even in the case of being "considered" as a Huguenot.  But not only that, some of the extant history of Vallière is likely in error:
  • Vallière was likely not executed for saying that Jesus was the son of Joseph and not God, and
  • Vallière was not burned in Paris for being a Huguenot.
No, I strongly suspect a recent book The Huguenots by Geoffrey Treasure is the more accurate church history, page 67:
"In 1523 the Augustinian monk Jean Vallière was burned in Paris for having read and commented on Luther’s works.”
The Jeopardy TV game show, and also the world, is no friend of Christianity.  It is only interested in "trivia" – which may or may not be truth.  You can be a good Jeopardy game show contestant by memorizing the whole Bible and popular church history with all its "facts".  But to be a Christian only requires that one believes the Gospel, that although one deserves only death, hell, and damnation, one's sins are already forgiven for the sake of Christ's life, suffering and death... a faith in The One who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. (John 14:6)

Here is a church history fact that will never be a clue on Jeopardy:

All Reformed sects originated from this religious group.

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