Arkiv | 2012/04/10

A list of reasons why calvinism is not what is taught in the Bible

Biblical reasons why Calvinism is not Biblical Christianity

Thanks to Stephen Thomas for this list!

1. ”For the Grace of God that bringeth Salvation hath appeared to ALL MEN” [Titus 2:11]

2. “And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin… He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.” [1 John 3:5-8]

3. ”I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live” [Deuteronomy 30]

4. ”But if they had stood in my counsel, and had caused my people to hear my words, then they should have turned them from their evil way, and from the evil of their doings.” [Jeremiah 23:22]

5. ”O Jerusalem, wash thine heart from wickedness, that thou mayest be saved. How long shall thy vain thoughts lodge within thee?” [Jeremiah 4:14]

6. ”They that observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy” [Jonah]

7. ”[Christ] was the true Light, which lights EVERY man that comes into the world.” [John 1:9]

8. ”Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye.” [Acts 7:51]

9. ”Having damnation, because they have cast off their first faith.” [1 Tim 5:12]

10. ”…’Sirs, what must I do to be saved?’ And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved..” [Acts 16]

11. ”And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for our’s only, but also for the sins of the whole world.” [1 John 2:2]

12. ”For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.” [John 3:16]

13. ”O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, which killest the prophets, and stonest them that are sent unto thee; how often WOULD I HAVE gathered thy children together, as a hen doth gather her brood under her wings, and YE WOULD NOT [you were not willing]!” [Luke 13] (exclamation mark in the text.) 

14. ”Repent, and turn yourselves from all your transgressions; so iniquity shall not be your ruin. Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby you have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will you die, O house of Israel? For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dies, says the Lord GOD: wherefore turn yourselves, and live.” [Ezekiel 18]

15. ”The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance..” [2 Peter 3:9]

16. ”God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation. Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though GOD WERE PLEADING through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, BE RECONCILED TO GOD.” [2 Cor 5:19]

17. ”Because that which may be known of GOD IS MANIFEST IN THEM; for God has showed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when THEY KNEW GOD, they glorified him not as God…” [Romans 1]

18. ”[God] has made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, [in the hope that] they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from EVERY ONE OF US: For in him we live, and move, and have our being… For we are also his offspring…now commandeth all men every where to repent. ” [Acts 17] [spoken to a city full of pagan heathens]

19. ”And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, BECAUSE we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.” [1 Jn 3:2]

20. ”God; Who will render to every man according to his deeds: To them who by patient continuance in WELL-DOING seek for glory and honour and immortality, eternal life...” [Rom 2:6]

21. ”brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for IF YE DO these things, ye shall never fall: For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.” [2 Peter 1:9]

22. ”And if you will not be reformed by me by these things, but will walk *contrary* unto me [resisting the Spirit of Grace (as per Hebrews 10:29 / Acts 7:51)]; Then will I also walk contrary unto you.. And if you will not for all this hearken unto me, but walk contrary unto me; Then I will walk contrary unto you… if then their uncircumcised hearts be humbled, and they then accept of the punishment of their iniquity: Then will I remember my covenant with Jacob, ” [Lev 26]

23. ”Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked: (For that RIGHTEOUS MAN dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his RIGHTEOUS SOUL from day to day with their unlawful deeds;) The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished.” [2 Peter 2:7]

24. ”Though these three men, Noah, Daniel, and Job, were in it, they should deliver but their own souls by THEIR RIGHTEOUSNESS, saith the Lord GOD.” [Ezekiel 14:14]

25. ”And [Jesus] marvelled because of their unbelief” [Mark 6:6]

26. ”Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons: But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him.” [Acts 10:24]

27. ”Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:” [James 1:13]

28. ”Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee. For I perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness” [Acts 8]

29. ”And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw ALL MEN unto me. This [Jesus] said, signifying what death he should die.” [John 12:32]

30. ”And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem, and men of Judah, judge, I pray you, between me and my vineyard. What could have been done more to my vineyard, that I have not done in it? [Why] then, when I looked that it should bring forth grapes, brought it forth wild grapes?…” [Isaiah 5]

31. ”But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. If a man therefore PURGE HIMSELF from these [sins], he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and [useful] for the master, and prepared unto every good work.” [2 Tim 2:20]

32. ”Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, ..to KEEP HIMSELF unspotted from the world.” [Jas 1:27]

33. ”But let every man prove[test/examine] HIS OWN WORK, and then shall he have REJOICING IN HIMSELF alone, and not in another.” [Gal 6:4]

34. ”He came unto his own, and his own received him not. But *as many as received him*, to them gave he power to BECOME the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:” [John 1:12] (i.e. receive Christ, THEN become a son of God by regeneration.)

35. ”brethren, we urge and exhort in the Lord Jesus that you should abound more and more, just as you received from us how you OUGHT to walk and to PLEASE GOD.. Therefore he who rejects this does not REJECT man, but GOD, who has also given us His Holy Spirit”. [1 Thess 4]

36. Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD [Man’s initiative / responsibility], and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. [God’s response]” [Isaiah 55:6-7]

37. ”Enoch…had this testimony, that he pleased God. But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” [Hebrews 11:5-6]

38. “he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin; That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the 1.) lusts of men, but to the 2.) will of God. For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the 1.) will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries…” [1 Peter 4:2-3]

39. ”For all that is 1.) in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is NOT OF THE FATHER, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth 2.) THE WILL OF GOD abideth for ever.” [1 John 2:16-17]

40. ”When the wicked man turneth away from his wickedness that he hath committed, and doeth that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul alive. Because he considereth, and turneth away from all his transgressions that he hath committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die.” [Ezekiel 18:27]

41. ”For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.” [1 Tim 2:3]

42. ”Bless, LORD, his substance, and accept the work of his hands; smite through the loins of them that rise against him, and of them that hate him, that they rise not again.” [Deut 33:!1]

43. ”The works of his hands are verity and judgment; all his commandments are sure. They stand fast for ever and ever, and are done in truth and uprightness.” [Psalm 111:7]

44. ”How long shall I bear with this evil congregation, which murmur against me?” [Numbers 14:27]

45. ”And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation” [2 Peter 3:15]

46. ”Jesus answered and said, O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? ” [Matt 17:17]

47. ”Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah” [1 Peter 3:20]

48. “and they sent forth Barnabas, that he should go as far as Antioch. Who, when he came, and had seen the grace of God, was glad, and exhorted them all, that with purpose of heart they would cleave unto the Lord. For he was a good man…” [Acts 11:22]

49. “Then said one unto him, Lord, are there few that be saved? And he said unto them, **Strive to enter in** at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able.” [Luke 13:23-24] [Strive = Agōnizesthe = Struggle with antagonistic difficulties and dangers, Agonise, Endeavour with strenuous zeal, labour, contend earnestly (as in an athletic contest, or warfare

50. “Then hear thou in heaven, and do, and judge thy servants, condemning the wicked, to bring his way upon his head; and justifying the righteous, to give him according to HIS righteousness.” [1 Kings 8:32]

51. “Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God.” [Hebrews 11:5] 

52. “Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only. Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers” [James 2:”2]

53. “Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God.” [Genesis 6:9] 

54. “just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked: (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;) The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations” [2 Peter 2:7]

55. “as David thy father walked, in integrity of heart, and in uprightness, to do according to all that I have commanded thee, and wilt keep my statutes and my judgments:” [1 Kings 9:4]

56. “LORD rewarded me according to MY righteousness: according to the cleanness of my hands hath he recompensed me. For I have kept the ways of the LORD, and have not wickedly departed from my God. For all his judgments were before me: and as for his statutes, I did not depart from them. I was also upright before him, and have kept myself from mine iniquity. Therefore the LORD hath recompensed me according to MY righteousness; according to my cleanness in his eye sight. With the merciful thou wilt shew thyself merciful, and with the upright man thou wilt shew thyself upright. With the pure thou wilt shew thyself pure..” [2 Samuel 22:21]

57. “There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil.” [Job 1:1] 

58. “Oh let the wickedness of the wicked come to an end; but establish the just: for the righteous God trieth the hearts and reins. My defence is of God, which saveth the upright in heart. God judgeth the righteous, and God is angry with the wicked every day.” [Psalm 7:9]

59. ”Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions.” [Ecclesiastes 7:29]

60. ”the stranger which flattereth with her words; Which forsaketh the guide of her youth, and *forgetteth the covenant of her God*. For her house inclineth unto death, and her paths unto the dead. None that go unto her return again, neither take they hold of the paths of life. That thou mayest walk in the way of *good men*, and keep the paths of *the righteous*. For *the upright* shall dwell in the land, and *the perfect* shall remain in it. But the wicked shall be cut off from the earth, and the transgressors shall be rooted out of it.” [Proverbs 2:16-22]

61. ”That they might set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments: And might not be as their fathers, a stubborn and rebellious generation; a generation that set not their heart aright, and whose spirit was not stedfast with God.” [Psalm 78]

62. ”If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land: But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured...” [Isaiah 1:19]

63. ” Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous.” [1 John 3:7]

64. ”Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof. Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God..” [Romans 6:12]

65. “And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans, because they suffered such things? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. He spake also this parable; A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard; and he came and sought fruit thereon, and found none. Then said he unto the dresser of his vineyard, Behold, these three years I come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and find none: cut it down; why cumbereth it the ground? And he answering said unto him, Lord, let it alone this year also, till I shall dig about it, and dung it: And IF it bear fruit, well: and if not, then after that thou shalt cut it down.” [Luke 13:2-9] 

66. “It may be that the house of Judah will hear all the evil which I purpose to do unto them; that they may return every man from his evil way; that I may forgive their iniquity and their sin.” [Jer 36:3]

Annonser

En PÅNYTTFÖDD kan förlora sin frälsning

”En gång frälst alltid frälst” stämmer inte alltid

Evigt liv får vi visserligen inte förrän vi verkligen stiger in i Guds rike, och Jesus varnade sina egna troende lärljungar att de måste hålla ut till änden för att bli frälsta, men vi kan ändå säga att vi gått från död till liv när vi blivit födda på nytt. Vi har ju blivit förlåtna och därför renade från våra synder och då blivit rättfärdiga och nya levande människor. (Vi är sedan rättfärdiga om vi lever rättfärdigt.) Att en sann kristen kan förlora sin plats i ”vinträdet” är glasklart i Bibeln enligt Joh. 15. Om till och med Kung David – en man av Guds eget hjärta – kunde välja att leva i otrohet och mord i ca ett år (och självfallet var han inte frälst under det året) så ska vi inte tro att kristna som lever idag är helt befriade från risken att ge efter för frestelser och därmed synda. Djävulen är efter oss som ett rytande lejon för att hitta någon att förföra, men vi har ett löfte att vi kan stå emot OM vi håller oss till Jesus.

Joh 15:1Jag är det sanna vinträdet, och min Fader är vingårdsmannen. Var och en gren i mig, som inte bär frukt den tar han bort, och var och en, som bär frukt, den rensar han, för att den skall bära mer frukt. 3. Redan nu är ni rena på grund av det ord som jag har talat till er. 4. Förbli i mig, och jag i er. Såsom grenen inte kan bära frukt av sig själv, om den inte förblir i vinträdet, så kan inte heller ni det, OM ni inte förblir i mig. 5. Jag är vinträdet, ni är grenarna. Den som förblir i mig, och jag i honom, han bär mycket frukt. Ty utan mig kan ni ingenting göra. 6. Den (IF anyone KJV) som inte förblir i mig kastas ut såsom en gren och förtorkas, och man samlar ihop dem och kastar dem i elden, och de brinner. 7. OM ni förblir i mig, och mina ord förblir i er, så kan ni be om vad ni vill, och ni skall få det. 8. Min Fader blir förhärligad genom att ni bär mycket frukt och blir mina lärjungar. 9. Såsom Fadern har älskat mig, så har jag också älskat er. Förbli i min kärlek. 10. OM ni håller mina bud, förblir ni i min kärlek, så som jag har hållit min Faders bud och förblir i hans kärlek. 

Jesus talar till sina frälsta lärljungar och det han säger gäller även oss  liksom det mesta i NT). Jesus säger ”redan nu är ni rena” till lärljungarna. Jesus uppmanar dem att FÖRBLI i honom för de kan inte bära frukt om de inte gör det. Jesus varnar de utvalda apostlarna att OM de inte förblir i honom så kommer de att tas bort utav Fadern och de kastas ut och förtorkas, vilket visar att de hade liv tidigare. De kastas sedan i elden där de brinner. Jesus säger ”OM ni håller mina bud, så förblir ni i min kärlek” vilket är ett tydligt VILLKOR. Risken finns att kristna inte håller buden och därmed mister sin plats i Livets Bok.

Hebr 10:28. Den som bryter Mose lag måste dö utan barmhärtighet, efter två eller tre vittnesmål.29. Hur mycket hårdare straff tror ni då inte att den förtjänar som förtrampar Guds Son och håller för orent förbundets blod, genom vilket han är helgad, och som smädar nådens Ande? 

Upp 22:19. Och om någon tar bort något från jorden i denna profetias bok, så skall Gud ta bort hans del från livets bok och från den heliga staden och från det som är skrivet i denna bok. 

Upp 3:5. Den som vinner seger skall bli klädd i vita kläder, och jag skall inte stryka hans namn ur livets bok, och jag skall bekänna hans namn inför min Fader och inför hans änglar. 

2 Mos 32:33 Men HERREN svarade Mose: »Den som har syndat mot mig, honom skall jag utplåna ur min bok. Jeremia 15:6Du själv försköt mig, säger HERREN; du gick din väg bort. Därför uträckte jag mot dig min hand och fördärvade dig; jag hade tröttnat att förbarma mig. 7Ja, jag kastade dem med kastskovel vid landets portar, jag gjorde föräldrarna barnlösa, jag förgjorde mitt folk, då de ej ville vända om från sina vägar. 

Psaltaren 51:13 Förkasta mig icke från ditt ansikte, och tag icke din helige Ande ifrån mig. 

Matt 11:5. Blinda ser, halta går, spetälska blir rena och döva hör, döda står upp, och för de fattiga blir evangelium predikat, 6. och salig är den som inte tar anstöt (fall away on account of me KJV) av mig. 

1 Tim 4:1Men Anden säger uttryckligen att i de sista tiderna skall somliga avfalla från tron och hålla sig till villoandar och onda andars läror 

Rev 2:5 Tänk därför på varifrån du har fallit och omvänd* dig och gör de första gärningarna, annars skall jag snart komma till dig och flytta din ljusstake från dess plats, OM du inte omvänder dig. (sagt till en kristen kyrka)

Matt 24:12. Och därför att ondskan* tilltar, skall kärleken kallna hos många.13. Men den som står fast intill änden, han skall bli frälst. 

Hebr. 3:12. Se till bröder, att inte någon av er har ett ont otroshjärta, så att han AVFALLER från den levande Guden, 13. utan förmana varandra alla dagar så länge det heter i dag, för att ingen av er skall bli förhärdad genom syndens bedrägeri. 

1 Kor 15:1 Bröder, jag påminner er om det evangelium, som jag har förkunnat för er, vilket ni också har tagit emot och i vilket ni också står fast vid. 2. Genom vilket ni blir frälsta, om ni håller fast vid det ord som jag förkunnade för er, såvida ni inte har trott förgäves. 

2 Pet 2:15. De har övergivit den rätta vägen och gått vilse och följt efter Balaams, Bosors sons väg, som älskade orättfärdighetens lön,—18. De talar stora men tomma ord och lockar i lösaktighet med köttets begär tillbaka dem, som verkligen kommit undan deras villfarelser. 19. Och de lovar dem frihet, fast de själva är slavar under fördärvet. Ty det man besegrats av är man slav under. 20. För om de genom Herrens och Frälsarens Jesu Kristi kunskap har kommit undan världens orenheter, men sedanåter har låtit sig snärjas och besegras av dem, så har för dem det sista blivit värre än det första. 21. Ty det hade varit bättre för dem att inte ha lärt känna rättfärdighetens väg, än att lära känna den och sedan vända sig bort från det heliga bud, som har blivit överlämnat åt dem. 22. Det har gått dem som ordspråket så sant säger: En hund vänder åter till sina spyor, och ett tvättat svin vältrar sig åter i smutsen. 

Lukas 8:13. Och det som såddes på stengrunden, det är de som när de hör tar emot ordet med glädje, men de har ingen rot, de tror till en tid, men då frestelsen kommer avfaller de.

Matteus 10:22. Och ni skall bli hatade av alla, för mitt namns skull. Men den som står fast intill änden skall bli frälst. 

Jakob 5:19. Bröder, om någon bland er går vilse, bort från sanningen och någon omvänder honom, 20. så skall han veta, att den som omvänder en syndare från hans villoväg, frälser en själ från döden och skyler över mängd av synder. 

Psa. 125:5 5 Men dem som vika av på vrånga vägar, dem rycke HERREN bort tillika med ogärningsmännen. Frid vare över Israel! 

Upp 3:15. Jag vet om dina gärningar. Du är varken kall eller varm. O, att du vore kall eller varm.16. Men eftersom du är ljum och varken kall eller varm, skall jag spy ut dig ur min mun. 

2 John 1:9. Var och en som överträder och inte förblir i Kristi lära, han har inte Gud. Den som förblir i Kristi lära har både Fadern och Sonen. 

Judas 5. Men jag vill påminna er, fastän ni redan en gång fått veta, att då Herren hade fört ut folket ur Egypten, förgjorde han sedan dem som inte trodde. 

Hosea 9:15 All deras ondska är samlad i Gilgal; ja, där fick jag hat till dem. För deras onda väsendes skull vill jag driva dem ut ur mitt hus. Jag skall icke längre bevisa dem kärlek; alla deras styresmän äro ju upprorsmän. —17Ja, min Gud skall förkasta dem, eftersom de icke ville höra honom; de skola bliva flyktingar bland hedningarna. 

Matt 10:28. Och frukta inte för dem, som dödar kroppen, men inte har makt att döda själen, utan frukta mer honom som kan fördärva både själ och kropp i helvetet. (Jesus frälsta lärljungar var adresserade.) 

Matt 10:32. Därför, var och en som bekänner mig inför människorna, honom skall också jag bekänna inför min Fader,som är i himlen. 33. Men den som förnekar mig inför människorna, honom skall också jag förneka inför min Fader, som är i himlen. 

Upp 3:11. Se, jag kommer snart. Håll fast det du har, så att ingen tar din krona. 

2 Tim 2:12. Om vi uthärdar, så skall vi också regera med honom. Men förnekar vi honom, så skall även han förneka oss. 

The reformers and their uncivilized behavior against the anabaptists

Anabaptists required that baptismal candidates be able to make their own confessions of faith and so rejected baptism to infantsAs a result of re-baptism, Anabaptists were heavily persecuted during the 16th century and into the 17th by both Protestants and Roman catholics.  The Anabaptists insisted upon the ”free course” of the Holy Spirit in worship, yet still maintained it all must be judged according to the Scriptures. The Swiss Anabaptist document titled ”Answer of Some Who Are Called (Ana-)Baptists – Why They Do Not Attend the Churches” shows one reason given for not attending the state churches was that these institutions forbade the congregation to exercise spiritual gifts according to ”the Christian order as taught in the gospel or the Word of God in 1 Corinthians 14.”  Common Anabaptist beliefs and practices of the 16th century continue to influence modern Christianity:

Persecutions by Protestants. 343 och A Short History of the Inquisition. 344, 346

Article IX: Of Baptism. Of Baptism they teach that it is necessary to salvation, and that through Baptism is offered the grace of God, and that children are to be baptized who, being offered to God through Baptism are received into God’s grace. They condemn the Anabaptists, who reject the baptism of children.

August 7th, 1536, a synod was convened at Hamburg to devise the best means of exterminating the Anabaptists. Not one voice among all the delegates was raised in favor of the Anabaptists. Even Melancthon voted to put all those to death who should remain, obstinate in their errors. The ministers of Ulm demanded that heresy should be extinguished by fire and sword. Those of Augsburg said: ”If we have not yet sent any Anabaptists to the gibbet, we have at least branded their cheeks with red iron!? 

The Reformed church also fiercely persecuted the Anabaptists. The Anabaptists rejected infant baptism, and advocated immersion as the only effective form of holy bathing. Shortly before the convening of the diet of Augsburg, in 1534, Rothmann, one of the leaders of the Anabaptists, had openly preached in the streets of that city. He had won the people, who cried out to his opponents, ”Answer Rothmann, Catholics, Lutherans, Zwinglians!”Luther and his friends answered Rothmann in the old persecuting way. The Anabaptists were excluded from the diet, and Luther wrote to Melanchthon that they were ”ravenous wolves,” who harried the sheep-fold of Christ and ”should be banished.” At the same diet the consistent Luther demanded liberty of conscience, churches in which to worship, and the full rights of citizenship. He was the prototype of our Sabbatarians, who demand ”religious liberty,” while asking that laws be enacted to deprive everybody but themselves of liberty on Sunday. August 7, 1536, a synod was convened at Hamburg to take measures for the suppression of the Anabaptists.

Delegates came from all the cities which had renounced Catholicism. Not one spoke for the Anabaptists. Even the ”gentle Melanchthon” voted for death for all who should prove obstinate in their errors, or who should return from banishment. ”The ministers of Ulm demanded that heresy should be extinguished by fire and sword. Those of Augsburg said: If we have not yet sent any Anabaptists to the gibbet, we have at least branded their cheeks with red iron. Those of Tubingen cried out: Mercy for the poor Anabaptists who are seduced by their leaders, death to the ministers of this sect. The chancellor showed himself much more tolerant. He wished that the Anabaptists should be imprisoned, where, by dint of hard usage, they might be converted” (Catrou, ut supra, liv. i., 224; Zudin, 464).

This decree was issued: ”Whoever rejects infant baptism; whoever transgresses the orders of the magistrates; whoever preaches against taxes; whoever teaches the community of goods ; whoever usurps the priesthood; whoever holds unlawful assemblies; whosoever sins against faith, shall be punished with death. As for the simple people, who have not preached or administered baptism, but who were secduced to permit themselves to frequent the assemblies cf the heretics, if they do not wish to renounce Anabaptism, they shall be scourged, punished with perpetuc.1 exile, and even with death if they return three times to the place whence they have been expelled (see Catrou, Gastius, Menzel and Meshovius).

That same year Luther wrote to Philip, Landgrave of Hesse: ”Whoever denies the doctrines of our faith aye, even one article which rests on the scripture, on the authority of the universal teaching of the church must be treated not only as a heretic, but also as a blasphemer of the holy name of God. It is not necessary to lose time in disputes with such people; they are to be condemned as impious blasphemers.”

In the same letter, referring to a man who had denied the ”doctrine of our faith,” he advises this gentle treatment: ”Drive him away as an apostle of hell; and if he does not flee, deliver him up as a seditious man to the executioner.” ”It is true that many Anabaptists suffered death merely because they were judged to be incurable heretics, for in this century the error of limiting the administration of baptism to adult persons only, and the practice of baptizing such as had received that sacrament in a state of infancy were looked upon as most flagitious and intolerable heresies” (Mosheim). In Zurich there was a place of imprisonment called the ”her etics tower.” Swiss Protestants would put Anabaptists in sacks and throw them into the Rhine, remarking ”That they were merely baptizing them by their own favorite mode of immersion” (Menzel).

The Calvinists were as intolerant of the Lutherans as the latter were of the Anabaptists. In some parts of southern Germany the Calvinists had gained the ascen dency and they drove out the Lutheran ”sons of the devil.” ”More than a thousand Lutheran ministers were proscribed, with their wives and children, and reduced to beg the bread of charity” (Olearius).

In Switzerland Calvin ruled with an iron hand. Audin tells us that the lady who arranged her hair coquettishly was to be imprisoned, as also her chambermaid; the merchant who played cards was confined in a jail; no one could have in his possession a cross or any other symbol of the Catholic church; to sell wafers was a finable offense, and the merchant s stock would be burned as sacrilegious; if a man kept his hat on at the approach of Calvin he was fined; if he contradicted Calvin he could be brought before the consistory and threat ened with excommunication; all must eat meat on Friday, because Catholics had conscientious scruples against doing so; the penalty of disobedience was three days imprisonment.

In one instance a father was imprisoned for four days because he preferred a certain name for his child and the minister preferred another. For having ”proposed an opinion false and contrary to the evangelical religion,” Jerome Bolsec was exiled; Gruet was beheaded and his head nailed to a post because ”he was suspected of being the author of a placard against Abel Poupin, and because letters ridiculing Calvin were found in his house”; Servetus, on the charge of being a sower of heresies, was kept in prison for two months, tormented with vermin, almost naked, and with little food, and then taken out and burned slowly to death in a greenwood fire.

This atrocious murder was sanctioned by even the ”merciful” Melanchthon. Calvin published a treatise entitled ”A Faithful Account of the Errors of Michael Servetus, in which it is Proved that Heretics ought to be Restrained with the Sword.” To this Castellio or Socinus replied; this in turn called out Beza and a host of smaller Protestant writers, who proved with perfect ease, of course that killing heretics was sanctioned by the Bible. They said that there was a special dispensation of providence in the case of Servetus, who might have escaped had he not gone to Geneva in disguise after his first conviction. ”Calvin and other foreign divines had many tools in Poland, particularly Prasnicius, a violent orthodox clergyman. With this man, and through him with the nobility, gentry and clergy, Calvin and Beza corresponded; and many divines of Germany and Switzerland, and even the synod of Geneva, sent letters and tracts into Poland, all justifying the murder of Gentilis and Servetus and the necessity of employing the secular power to rid the world of such monsters was denied the trinity and infant baptism” (Robinson, ”Ecclesiastical Researches”). The consistory of Geneva advised Prince Radzivil ”to use his influence with the nobility of Poland, to engage them to treat the antitrinitarians as they would Tartars and Muscovites.”

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