Why did Luther and Calvin percieve the anabaptists to be heretics?

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KaphLamedh

Puritan Board Freshman
If I remember right, Luther had positive thoughts on anabaptism at first

I heard that claim and the claim that Luther was briefly a credo by Baptists. Can you provide any primary material to back up your claim? I know I haven’t seen it in any Luther writings/readings from 1522 through 1530, or the credo claim from reading his works from 1519 through 1535.

Could be that you are right :think:
As I earlier wrote "if I remember right"? ;)
 

Ne Oublie

Puritan Board Sophomore
Isn't it interesting the different views from those that are Baptist posting and those that are Paedobaptist posting in regards to the Anabaptists?

I would not have thought it would have been such a touchy subject! :D
 

Willem van Oranje

Puritan Board Junior
You are using a very modern definition of heresy, not the biblical one. Paedo-baptism is a correct doctrine, and therefore it cannot be heresy. The Reformers were not heretics, because their objections to Rome were correct, and because Rome proved itself to be a false church.

So you're saying that John MacArthur, Zwingli, John Piper, the Divines who crafted the London Baptist Confession of 1689, and myself are heretics?

Not sure how Zwingli's name made your list. Again, a heretic is someone who splits the church over a false doctrine. This is to be distinguished from those who merely continue to promote a long-standing false doctrine in a church of which they are a part. Those to continue a false doctrine which they have inherited (so to speak) are not as harshly to be judged as those who are the first to promote it, and who actually split and disrupt a true church of Christ over it.
 

KaphLamedh

Puritan Board Freshman
Isn't it interesting the different views from those that are Baptist posting and those that are Paedobaptist posting in regards to the Anabaptists?

I would not have thought it would have been such a touchy subject! :D

Yeah! But why there has to be disagreement on baptism between believers?
 

Damon Rambo

Puritan Board Sophomore
To be clear and add to what others have said the very first line of the *first* London Baptist Confession (1644) showed that the English Particular Baptists (now known more commonly identified in the modern era as Confessional Reformed Baptists or as the new regional Georgia association calls itself - Confessional Baptists) desired to express that they did *not* have a connection to Anabaptists and pointed instead to their heritage through the the Puritan/Separatist movement. The first line of the 1644 confession reads:
"A CONFESSION OF FAITH of seven congregations or churches of Christ in London, which are commonly, but unjustly, called Anabaptists…"
Three of the original signatories of the 1644 confession also signed the 1677/1689 Second London Baptist Confession the one that is still in daily use by Confessional Reformed Baptists like you find in some individual churches or 2nd LBCF subscription-based Associations like ARBCA today.

Right. What is interesting is that both the first, and the second LBC, were actually remakes of Calvinist/Reformed documents. The 1689 confession of course, was taken from the Westminster confession, as everyone knows. What is not known by many, is that the First London confession was taken from the 1596 "True Confession", of the English Separatists.
Who needs a History lesson?

The 1644 is way before the 1646 WCF. It was a retaliation to some things that were leveled against the RBC or Particalar Baptists. You have a lot to learn. The Second was taken from the Savoy Declaration.

My friend,

First, you have not read my post carefully. I stated the FIRST London Baptist Confession, came from the 1596 True Confession (Creeds and Platforms of Congregationalism, pages 59-74, Walker, Williston. This was drafted by the Congregationalist Separatist Church, started by Johnson and Ainsworth (the names are from memory, so it might be incorrect.)

This confession was the model that the 1644 confession used (Baptist Confessions of Faith, by Lumpkin, William, 146.)

Now, in regards to the Second LBCF. You are wrong. Yes, the Savoy declaration was consulted as well. I was not trying to give a course on Baptist history. However, Elder William Collins used the Westminster, in addition to the Savoy, as his model (Lumpkin, 236). If you will turn your attention to the documents themselves, for but a moment, I can prove to you this unequivocal reality, straight from the source. I will give you several articles of each Confession to compare, showing word-for word agreement between the 2LBCF, and the WCF, AGAINST the Savoy declaration. I will go ahead and post one example in full.

WCF Chapter VI, article one, states (in part)..

"God was pleased, according to his wise and holy counsel, to permit, having purposed to order it to his own glory."

The 2LBCF, same chapter and article, quotes this word for word. It is absent from the Savoy Declaration.


Other articles after this model, include
Chapter 10, article 3 ,
Chapter 16, article 1,
Chapter 18, Article 2,
WCF Chapter 16, article 2, SDFO Chapter 17, article 2, 2LBCF Chapter 17 (or 18, depending on version) article 2,

To name but a few. In all of these instances, the LBCF and WCF have word-for-word agreement, disagreeing with the Savoy declaration.

---------- Post added at 10:20 AM ---------- Previous post was at 10:10 AM ----------

So, one groups heretic is another groups hero.

Having studied at a baptist college, anabaptistswere generally seen in quite a positive light. They were heroes. In some ways seen to be precursors to the baptists.

I'm currently reading Luther's commentary on Galatians, only read chapter one thus far. However he takes many a swipe at the anabaptists without really explaining their position.

Can anyone shed some light?

Thanks in advance.

John

...Because they split the church and disrupted society based on false doctrines: anti-paedobaptism, anti-authority, egalitarianism, and what some in modern times have called the SOLO Scriptura principle: That is, "forget about church history, it's just me and my Bible-ism."

Thanks for this.

Are these things really heresy though?

According to the old, biblical definition, heresy is any false doctrine which splits, or disrupts the church.

Wow, then there are many paedo baptists who are heretics because of the schisms in their dividing from each other. Issues of Congregationalism, Doctrines of ecclesiology, Civil Government, slavery, etc. etc. etc., have been reasons of schism. According to your definition these guys are outside.

I think you need to tighten up your definition. I affirm the Ecumenical Historic Creeds.

Yes, if someone splits or disrupts a church over these issues, there are only two options. They are A. heretics (according to the biblical definition) or B. they are right. In other cases there may be separation where there was not ever a split. This is not in the same category as a disruption of a church which was once at peace. There was never a heresis.

---------- Post added at 08:18 AM ---------- Previous post was at 08:09 AM ----------

Zwingli's pupils DID approach Zwingli privately about Baptism. Zwingli basically told them to shut up. They then did the Biblical thing, when someone is not adhering to scripture; they proclaimed the truth anyway.

At which point the godly, Christian thing to do would have been to "shut up." "Proclaiming the truth anyway" presumes that what they were teaching was true, which it was not. It was a false doctrine. People who go around proclaiming false doctrine to disrupt the church are called heretics in Scripture, with instructions to "reject them" after two admonitions.

By your definition, the reformers, who did the same thing, are also heretics for causing division. The fact is, although there were some horrible Anabaptists, there is also pretty good examples of guys who had decent theology, and approached the situation Biblically...several of them were killed for it.

Difference is that the Reformers were preaching the true gospel of Jesus Christ, and Rome, by denying it and refusing to allow it, proved itself to be a false church which warrants causing a split.

Do you think that the Reformed churches from which the Anabaptists split were false churches? If they weren't false churches, the Anabaptists should have submitted to their authority instead of causing a split over baptism.

Hmm. Luther himself said "Unless I am convinced by Scripture, or by pure reason, I cannot retract anything, for going against conscience, is neither right, nor safe..."

And yes, although I do not want to open up a "can of worms" here, I think Zwingli was a politician, more than a Christian, and does not deserve to be grouped with men like Calvin and Luther.

But that is just me.
The fact of the matter is, there is a LOT of stuff that most people on here would agree with the Anabaptists about, over against the reformers. For instance, Hubmaier was one of the first people, ever, to assert that people should have freedom to practice their beliefs without fear of persecution. Most of the early reformers did not. I have not met a modern reformed guy yet, that says "Heretics should be killed."

You just met one. Pleased to make your acquaintance.


This is just unbelievably sad. You think that I and the other baptists on this board should be killed?!

Love you to, brother. :pray2:
 
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torstar

Puritan Board Sophomore
Isn't it interesting the different views from those that are Baptist posting and those that are Paedobaptist posting in regards to the Anabaptists?

I would not have thought it would have been such a touchy subject! :D


:popcorn:


:rofl:


For sure.

I made the switch from credo to paedo-baptism over the past few years. Had to explain myself over a decent amount of time in the 6 or so hours of pastor/elder chatter/interview.

Came up with a suitable answer that was 100% honest to the core.

It required a lot of high speed circular-motion-hand-waving to accompany it.
 

Willem van Oranje

Puritan Board Junior
Hmm. Luther himself said "Unless I am convinced by Scripture, or by pure reason, I cannot retract anything, for going against conscience, is neither right, nor safe..."

You are talking about a man who had a teachable spirit, who did everything he could NOT to split the one church catholic. Even his statement at the Diet of Worms shows that he was willing to be shown if he was in error. This was a man who revered church history, and the church catholic. This is in start contrast to the attitude of Grebel and Manz.

And yes, although I do not want to open up a "can of worms" here, I think Zwingli was a politician, more than a Christian, and does not deserve to be grouped with men like Calvin and Luther.
But that is just me.

Zwingli was a great Reformer and a martyr for the Christian faith. We are all as indebted to him as we are to Luther and Calvin. He was above all a pastor. I find it sad that one claiming Reformed roots would say otherwise. I think in this regard, humanist Enlightenment thinking has got the better of some of us.

This is just unbelievably sad. You think that I and the other baptists on this board should be killed?!

Love you to, brother. :pray2:

No. Please don't put words in my mouth. I have never called anyone on this board a "heretic." Thank you for the love, and the prayer, brother.
 

Damon Rambo

Puritan Board Sophomore
Hmm. Luther himself said "Unless I am convinced by Scripture, or by pure reason, I cannot retract anything, for going against conscience, is neither right, nor safe..."

You are talking about a man who had a teachable spirit, who did everything he could NOT to split the one church catholic. Even his statement at the Diet of Worms shows that he was willing to be shown if he was in error. This was a man who revered church history, and the church catholic. This is in start contrast to the attitude of Grebel and Manz.

No, it is not in stark contrast to them. Grebel and Manz were actually very patient men, and debated the issue privately for nearly three years...not just the issue of baptism, but the issue of Eucharist/Communion/Lords Supper, which Zwingli was in agreement with, but refused to implement for political reasons. I believe (again, this is from memory, so I might be wrong), it was not until Zwingli's second disputation in 1523, that these men finally spoke up publicly. And it was 2 years of public debate after that, that they finally split off.

The fact is, there is no excuse for Zwingli and his men gleefully giving these men their "third baptism." This is disgusting, anti-christian behavior.

And yes, although I do not want to open up a "can of worms" here, I think Zwingli was a politician, more than a Christian, and does not deserve to be grouped with men like Calvin and Luther.
But that is just me.

Zwingli was a great Reformer and a martyr for the Christian faith. We are all as indebted to him as we are to Luther and Calvin. He was above all a pastor. I find it sad that one claiming Reformed roots would say otherwise. I think in this regard, humanist Enlightenment thinking has got the better of some of us.

Zwingli died in a battle that was as much political as it was religious. He was not put to death for his faith. And FYI, I am not the first reformed-minded person to speak ill of Zwingli. Luther even spoke ill of Zwingli.

This is just unbelievably sad. You think that I and the other baptists on this board should be killed?!

Love you to, brother. :pray2:

No. Please don't put words in my mouth. I have never called anyone on this board a "heretic." Thank you for the love, and the prayer, brother.

I am not putting words in your mouth. You said we should not have freedom of religion: heretics should be put to death. Since I am agreeing with Manz and Grebel on their split (though not with all of their theology) over baptism, would that not make me equally a "heretic" in your eyes, and hence, I should be put to death?
 

rbcbob

Puritan Board Graduate
So you are with Zwingli who stood by approvingly as Manz was murdered by drowning in the Limmat River for believing as I do that infants should not be baptized?

Before you condemn Zwingli too harshly, you may want to read his tricks of the Catabaptists, instead of peddling silly Baptist make believe stories. The Anabaptists were practicing parricide, polygamy, murder, adultery, etc. all in the name of "freedom in Christ." Also, they undermined the foundations of Christendom, and cut off all of the saints' children from the Church of Christ. Their "freedom in Christ" was wicked license, and the rejection of infant baptism was merely the cap-stone on their mountain of error. These are no light matters.

If a soceity's biblical foundations are attacked, that is not merely a mental disagreement, or heresy, it is murder on a massive scale: murder of Christ's kingdom. I think it shortsighted to say that they were executed merely for "infant baptism": no, it was much more fundamental than that. That was merely the cap-stone.

So, yes, I agree with the drowning of Anabaptist heretics.

Let me see if I understand you. Perhaps you misspoke. If Theonomy seizes the day and takes political power in this country you would agree with drowning me and my church for our Baptist beliefs. Is that your position?
 

Damon Rambo

Puritan Board Sophomore
This thread is beginning to scare me. Am I going to get whacked over the head, and drowned at T4G in 2012?? Every reformed paedobaptist person I have ever met, was at least willing to admit that the Reformers were overzealous in the murder of heretics..

Really. I am scared.:candle:
 

Willem van Oranje

Puritan Board Junior
No, it is not in stark contrast to them. Grebel and Manz were actually very patient men, and debated the issue privately for nearly three years...not just the issue of baptism, but the issue of Eucharist/Communion/Lords Supper, which Zwingli was in agreement with, but refused to implement for political reasons. I believe (again, this is from memory, so I might be wrong), it was not until Zwingli's second disputation in 1523, that these men finally spoke up publicly. And it was 2 years of public debate after that, that they finally split off.

I tend to think that if they had been truly teachable on this subject, they would have easily been convinced by the sheer weight of evidence supporting paedo-baptism. But even if we assume that they were teachable, they should have continued to keep their dissention private. The only justification for disrupting the peace and order of that church would be if the Reformed Church of Zuerich were not a true church. Is this your position?

The fact is, there is no excuse for Zwingli and his men gleefully giving these men their "third baptism." This is disgusting, anti-christian behavior.

It wasn't "Zwingli and his men." It was the civil authority.

Zwingli died in a battle that was as much political as it was religious. He was not put to death for his faith. And FYI, I am not the first reformed-minded person to speak ill of Zwingli. Luther even spoke ill of Zwingli.

He died in battle as the men of Zuerich were defending their church, city, homes and families against Papist agression. This qualifies as martyrdom in my book. Some say that he died with a sword in his hand. Others say he was ministering to Zuerich's soldiers. I kind of hope that the former is the case. It would be the duty of any Christian man, no matter what his usual calling might be, to take up arms in a situation like that.

I am not putting words in your mouth. You said we should not have freedom of religion: heretics should be put to death. Since I am agreeing with Manz and Grebel on their split (though not with all of their theology) over baptism, would that not make me equally a "heretic" in your eyes, and hence, I should be put to death?

Freedom of religion is not freedom of heresy.

Have you split a church over your anti-paedo baptism? Would you seek membership in a Reformed, i. e. paedo-baptist, church, and then proceed to make an issue of paedo-baptism, encouraging members to re-baptize one another and withhold their children from baptism?

There was a situation in a Presbyterian church of which I was once a member, in which a woman (my wife, actually) was received merely on a profession of faith, having been baptized into Christ as an infant in the Roman Catholic Church. One person in the church decided to make an issue of it. He began sending e-mails to the whole congregation telling them that this meant that our church was embracing Romanism. He proceeded to stop attending worship. He stated that he no longer wished to be a part of our church. Eventually, he was erased. Essentially this is a form of voluntary self-excommunication. He continues to send e-mails on this subject to the congregation, declaring that she is not a true church because she will recognize baptism which has taken place in the Roman Catholic Church. I consider this to be an example of "heresy." This man gave to himself, voluntarily, in his case, the equivalent of a spiritual death sentence because of his scruple. I have told him that we are praying for his salvation in Jesus' name.

This case is analagous, I believe. Of course, there is one major difference, and that is that we do not have one established church anywhere in the United States these days. The state of the church is already terribly fractured. So for us to put ourselves in Zwingli's shoes, we have to consider what a difference it made that there was only one church in Zuerich. The Civil Authority was keen to keep the peace and order of the church, something which we do not enjoy today as far as our magistrate. Ours is a day like in Judges, when "every man did what was right in his own eyes."

---------- Post added at 12:22 PM ---------- Previous post was at 12:12 PM ----------

This thread is beginning to scare me. Am I going to get whacked over the head, and drowned at T4G in 2012?? Every reformed paedobaptist person I have ever met, was at least willing to admit that the Reformers were overzealous in the murder of heretics..

Really. I am scared.:candle:

Pastor Damon,

If I were an attendee or member of a Baptist church, I wouldn't make paedo-baptism into an issue which would disrupt and split the church. And I would be very careful how I brought it up. And if I had a child, I would not take it upon myself to baptize him or her as an infant. I would move to another locale where I could be a part of a paedo-baptist church. Or, otherwise, I would have to live with the doctrine and practice of that Baptist church. Why couldn't Grebel and Manz take this same attitude?
 

Christusregnat

Puritan Board Professor
So, yes, I agree with the drowning of Anabaptist heretics.

Let me see if I understand you. Perhaps you misspoke. If Theonomy seizes the day and takes political power in this country you would agree with drowning me and my church for our Baptist beliefs. Is that your position?

Context, context, context. I really don't think this sort of question deserves an answer. But, no, that's not my position.
 

Marrow Man

Drunk with Powder
Mod Warning

Gentlemen, lets make sure we tone down the rhetoric in his discussion. It would be helpful if this topic could be discussed w/o using the word "heresy," but since that is part of the OP, that is not possible. Let us please accept the fact that no one is accusing anyone else on the PB of "heresy" and leave it at that. If anyone is actually doing that, however, we have bigger problems to deal with.

:judge:
 

Christusregnat

Puritan Board Professor
This thread is beginning to scare me. Am I going to get whacked over the head, and drowned at T4G in 2012?? Every reformed paedobaptist person I have ever met, was at least willing to admit that the Reformers were overzealous in the murder of heretics..

Really. I am scared.:candle:

You slander the reformers by calling it murder. You need to repent of slandering the Reformers on this matter. They believed that the magistrate is keeper of both tables of the law, including punishment of violations of the laws concerning the true worship of God. This belief is founded in Scripture, and was attacked by the lawless Anabaptists, as it is by modern lawless theologians, regardless of whether they claim to be heirs of the reformation or not.
 

Damon Rambo

Puritan Board Sophomore
No, it is not in stark contrast to them. Grebel and Manz were actually very patient men, and debated the issue privately for nearly three years...not just the issue of baptism, but the issue of Eucharist/Communion/Lords Supper, which Zwingli was in agreement with, but refused to implement for political reasons. I believe (again, this is from memory, so I might be wrong), it was not until Zwingli's second disputation in 1523, that these men finally spoke up publicly. And it was 2 years of public debate after that, that they finally split off.

I tend to think that if they had been truly teachable on this subject, they would have easily been convinced by the sheer weight of evidence supporting paedo-baptism.
Of course I disagree with this. I do not believe there is ANY evidence supporting paedobaptism. But this is off topic: lets keep on point.

But even if we assume that they were teachable, they should have continued to keep their dissention private. The only justification for disrupting the peace and order of that church would be if the Reformed Church of Zuerich were not a true church. Is this your position?

But this was not the situation at all. The Church was already in a state of dissension, from Zwingli. Zwingli and his pupils just disagreed over how far that dissent should go.

I do not agree with your premise. I believe that anytime something unbiblical is taught (like paedobaptism), it is the duty of every believer to stand up and say something.
The fact is, there is no excuse for Zwingli and his men gleefully giving these men their "third baptism." This is disgusting, anti-christian behavior.

It wasn't "Zwingli and his men." It was the civil authority.

Um, it was Zwingli who issued a decree in 1526, stating that the Anabaptists were to be drowned. You have a modern, church/state separation idea of Government that was not present during Zwingli's time. The Church and the State were one entity.

Zwingli died in a battle that was as much political as it was religious. He was not put to death for his faith. And FYI, I am not the first reformed-minded person to speak ill of Zwingli. Luther even spoke ill of Zwingli.

He died in battle as the men of Zuerich were defending their church, city, homes and families against Papist agression. This qualifies as martyrdom in my book. Some say that he died with a sword in his hand. Others say he was ministering to Zuerich's soldiers. I kind of hope that the former is the case. It would be the duty of any Christian man, no matter what his usual calling might be, to take up arms in a situation like that.

A "martyr" in my mind, is a person who dies in way similar to that of Christ, like a "lamb to the slaughter." I would not include political revolutionaries, who die with sword in hand, under the title of "martyr."

I am not putting words in your mouth. You said we should not have freedom of religion: heretics should be put to death. Since I am agreeing with Manz and Grebel on their split (though not with all of their theology) over baptism, would that not make me equally a "heretic" in your eyes, and hence, I should be put to death?

Freedom of religion is not freedom of heresy.

Have you split a church over your anti-paedo baptism? Would you seek membership in a Reformed, i. e. paedo-baptist, church, and then proceed to make an issue of paedo-baptism, encouraging members to re-baptize one another and withhold their children from baptism?

That is not what the Anabaptists did. They, and Zwingli, dissented from the Romanists. The church was already disrupted, and its views were not decided at this time. This was not some established Presbyterian church, that had been teaching the same doctrine for 20 years. This was a church which was shifting in its doctrine, and where two groups had different ideas on what that should be; so the one group killed the other.
 
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Skyler

Puritan Board Graduate
Seriously, guys. Have a little grace here--there's a distinct possibility that you just might be wrong! Don't be too proud to admit it.
 

Grimmson

Puritan Board Sophomore
Brothers, let not use this discussion on the Anabaptists to be an excuse to make charges against one another. As a Baptist, I have no problem looking at many of the Anabaptists as heretics for some of the reasons mentioned already by myself and others in this thread. However, my charge against them is not in regards to their practice of baptism, but instead on their views of justification, downgraded view of scripture as applied to Christian holiness and replaced with a exalted view of man in union with the Spirit, and their sinful behavior of visibly and forcibly rebelling against the state.

It would be one issue if the Anabaptists were killed just because they practiced rebaptism, which is what the term means. It would also be another issue if they were forced by the church and the state to baptize their children. The problem is that the Anabaptists were not initially the peaceful singing kumbaya type. Instead of continually being patient with the church and state, some took up arms against the state, and not completely over the issue of baptism. They too, when the radical were in power, were a scary theonomy branch and were just as guilty of putting to death, and more so compared to the reformed cities against the Anabaptist, those that disagreed with them over various issues. The peaceful living anabaptist branches were not as much of a threat and were allowed to survive relatively speaking by the state. The problem that existed was that anabaptism was a political marker towards rebellious defiance against the state and other citizenry of a city, that lead itself towards hate speech and murder. Cities were not going to roll over on their back and give in to their demands; it would be seen as a sign of weakness to cities under Roman influence and by Rome as well. The line between politics and religion during that day was blurry. And I already mentioned the theological position of Luther on this issue.

We need to be careful and consider the wildly charged atmosphere politically and theologically during the time of the early reformation. If we do then that should keep our rhetoric in check. The reality that there were no Baptist during this time leads Baptist to find kindred sprits in the Reformation through the Anabaptists; despite of their heresies and faults. I and probably other reformed Baptist of today were probably been killed or excommunicated on both sides for expressing our theology. If one is going to look for purity of theology and clean bloodless hands, I say good luck to you because I can not think of a group or person that does in the early parts of the Reformation (I’m not including Hus, which was prior to the Reformation). Baptist need not to romanticize the Anabaptist and look to them as true representative martyrs of their own position, at least of the soteriologically reformed. If we value the truth then the truth is what we should pursue in all areas, including history. It is for this reason, you do not see me looking to the Anabaptist as heroes; even though a case can be made towards an influence of a credo position towards the English Separatists.

And in regards to the issue of theonomy and Paedos taking control, hopefully our brothers here on this board will protect us credos; primarily because of our shared soteriological position in the doctrines of grace. :D
 
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Willem van Oranje

Puritan Board Junior
No, it is not in stark contrast to them. Grebel and Manz were actually very patient men, and debated the issue privately for nearly three years...not just the issue of baptism, but the issue of Eucharist/Communion/Lords Supper, which Zwingli was in agreement with, but refused to implement for political reasons. I believe (again, this is from memory, so I might be wrong), it was not until Zwingli's second disputation in 1523, that these men finally spoke up publicly. And it was 2 years of public debate after that, that they finally split off.

I tend to think that if they had been truly teachable on this subject, they would have easily been convinced by the sheer weight of evidence supporting paedo-baptism.
Of course I disagree with this. I do not believe there is ANY evidence supporting paedobaptism. But this is off topic: lets keep on point.

But even if we assume that they were teachable, they should have continued to keep their dissention private. The only justification for disrupting the peace and order of that church would be if the Reformed Church of Zuerich were not a true church. Is this your position?

But this was not the situation at all. The Church was already in a state of dissension, from Zwingli. Zwingli and his pupils just disagreed over how far that dissent should go.

I do not agree with your premise. I believe that anytime something unbiblical is taught (like paedobaptism), it is the duty of every believer to stand up and say something.
The fact is, there is no excuse for Zwingli and his men gleefully giving these men their "third baptism." This is disgusting, anti-christian behavior.

It wasn't "Zwingli and his men." It was the civil authority.

Um, it was Zwingli who issued a decree in 1526, stating that the Anabaptists were to be drowned. You have a modern, church/state separation idea of Government that was not present during Zwingli's time. The Church and the State were one entity.

Zwingli died in a battle that was as much political as it was religious. He was not put to death for his faith. And FYI, I am not the first reformed-minded person to speak ill of Zwingli. Luther even spoke ill of Zwingli.

He died in battle as the men of Zuerich were defending their church, city, homes and families against Papist agression. This qualifies as martyrdom in my book. Some say that he died with a sword in his hand. Others say he was ministering to Zuerich's soldiers. I kind of hope that the former is the case. It would be the duty of any Christian man, no matter what his usual calling might be, to take up arms in a situation like that.

A "martyr" in my mind, is a person who dies in way similar to that of Christ, like a "lamb to the slaughter." I would not include political revolutionaries, who die with sword in hand, under the title of "martyr."

I am not putting words in your mouth. You said we should not have freedom of religion: heretics should be put to death. Since I am agreeing with Manz and Grebel on their split (though not with all of their theology) over baptism, would that not make me equally a "heretic" in your eyes, and hence, I should be put to death?

Freedom of religion is not freedom of heresy.

Have you split a church over your anti-paedo baptism? Would you seek membership in a Reformed, i. e. paedo-baptist, church, and then proceed to make an issue of paedo-baptism, encouraging members to re-baptize one another and withhold their children from baptism?

That is not what the Anabaptists did. They, and Zwingli, dissented from the Romanists. The church was already disrupted, and its views were not decided at this time. This was not some established Presbyterian church, that had been teaching the same doctrine for 20 years. This was a church which was shifting in its doctrine, and where two groups had different ideas on what that should be; so the one group killed the other.

[Edit], where are you getting your history from, the "Trail of Blood"? Try The Ana-baptists and their Stepchildren by Dr. F. N. Lee.

The church in Zuerich had practiced the baptism of infant Christians for as long as it had existed. At the time of the Reformation, Zuerich allowed for a period of debate to occur on the topic of the baptism of infant Christians, but the Ana-baptists persisted even after it was decided, and began to take disruptive actions after it had already been decided.

Although it's a common misconception these days to look back and think that church and state were one in Reformed nations of the 16th century, it is not the case. Cooperation between church and state does not destroy the distinction of jurisdictions. If used properly, mutual support and cooperation between church and state upholds the distinct power of each in their respective spheres of jurisdiction. The Reformed city-states of Switzerland at the time of the Reformation are largely a model of this distinction. And it goes back to the clear distinction between King and priesthood/prophets in the Old Testament. Zwingli was not issuing a civil decree that Anabaptists be drowned. He was providing spiritual counsel to the civil council as their pastor. There is a critical distinction.

Would it make you feel better if the Reformed citizens of Zuerich had simply allowed the Papist armies to come and kill them for their Protestant faith without taking up arms to defend themselves?
 
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Backwoods Presbyterian

Puritanboard Amanuensis
And in regards to the issue of theonomy and Paedos taking control, hopefully our brothers here on this board will protect us credos; primarily because of our shared soteriological in the doctrines of grace. :D

While I know you are trying to be cute and bring in some much needed levity can anyone here point to any Theonomist who claims the Penal Code provides for the death penalty for credo-baptism alone? Because if you cannot I'd like the misrepresentation (whether purposeful or just ignorant) to stop.
 

Grimmson

Puritan Board Sophomore
So, yes, I agree with the drowning of Anabaptist heretics.

Let me see if I understand you. Perhaps you misspoke. If Theonomy seizes the day and takes political power in this country you would agree with drowning me and my church for our Baptist beliefs. Is that your position?

Context, context, context. I really don't think this sort of question deserves an answer. But, no, that's not my position.

I think I would personally recommended their death by a quick beheading and not drawn out drowning if I lived during that time. Adam, I think you should have explained what you mean by context, and yes, it deserved in answer based on how I saw your post presented. I would have executed them by state authority because of their behavior towards political rebellion and murder within the context that I presented earlier. If that what you meant then we would have been in agreement.
 
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Ne Oublie

Puritan Board Sophomore
Zwingli died in a battle that was as much political as it was religious. He was not put to death for his faith. And FYI, I am not the first reformed-minded person to speak ill of Zwingli. Luther even spoke ill of Zwingli.

Can you further on this and cite your reference that would have you interpret it this way? Are you able to see that fine line between political and religious at this time, in this part of the world? Luther did not agree with Zwingli on the Lord's Supper, which by the way, Luther would have spoke ill of you in that manner as well. I am not aware of Luther speaking ill of Zwingli other than this, a reference or references would be nice on this as well.

My 2 cents....I think that if we are wealthy enough to invite the venerable dead to the discussion, we should respect them enough to use their own words.
 

Christusregnat

Puritan Board Professor
So, yes, I agree with the drowning of Anabaptist heretics.

Let me see if I understand you. Perhaps you misspoke. If Theonomy seizes the day and takes political power in this country you would agree with drowning me and my church for our Baptist beliefs. Is that your position?

Context, context, context. I really don't think this sort of question deserves an answer. But, no, that's not my position.

I think I would personally recommended their death by a quick beheading and not drawn out drowning if I lived during that time. Adam, I think you should have explained what you mean by context, and yes, it deserved in answer based on how I saw your post presented. I would have executed them by state authority because of their behavior towards political rebellion and murder within the context that I presented earlier. If that what you meant then we would have been in agreement.

David,

Let me repeat the context:

Before you condemn Zwingli too harshly, you may want to read his tricks of the Catabaptists, instead of peddling silly Baptist make believe stories. The Anabaptists were practicing parricide, polygamy, murder, adultery, etc. all in the name of "freedom in Christ." Also, they undermined the foundations of Christendom, and cut off all of the saints' children from the Church of Christ. Their "freedom in Christ" was wicked license, and the rejection of infant baptism was merely the cap-stone on their mountain of error. These are no light matters.

If a soceity's biblical foundations are attacked, that is not merely a mental disagreement, or heresy, it is murder on a massive scale: murder of Christ's kingdom. I think it shortsighted to say that they were executed merely for "infant baptism": no, it was much more fundamental than that. That was merely the cap-stone.

So, yes, I agree with the drowning of Anabaptist heretics.


---------- Post added at 11:15 AM ---------- Previous post was at 11:11 AM ----------

By the by, Zwingli was an outspoken critic of the merchantilization of warfare from Swiss soldiers. The Swiss men were hired out to fight other men's battles, and Zwingli was originally a chaplain with the Swiss mercinaries. After his conversion to the Reformed faith, he criticized those practices much, but he did not lose his compassion for the soldiers, nor his involvement with them; especially in fighting just wars. He didn't hide behind his pulpit, but went with his men, even to the death. That was his faith: that the Shepherd should be with his sheep in peace and in danger. If you don't admire that faith, I don't know what to tell you.
 

py3ak

Unshaven and anonymous
Staff member
[Moderator] Time out. I'm closing this thread to give everyone a chance to look at the original post and decide whether or not they can limit themselves to a helpful, substantive, documented response to its question. If the answer is no, just stay on the sidelines. You can keep yourself occupied by meditating on this cartoon.[/Moderator]
 

PuritanCovenanter

The Joyful Curmudgeon
Staff member
To be clear and add to what others have said the very first line of the *first* London Baptist Confession (1644) showed that the English Particular Baptists (now known more commonly identified in the modern era as Confessional Reformed Baptists or as the new regional Georgia association calls itself - Confessional Baptists) desired to express that they did *not* have a connection to Anabaptists and pointed instead to their heritage through the the Puritan/Separatist movement. The first line of the 1644 confession reads:
"A CONFESSION OF FAITH of seven congregations or churches of Christ in London, which are commonly, but unjustly, called Anabaptists…"
Three of the original signatories of the 1644 confession also signed the 1677/1689 Second London Baptist Confession the one that is still in daily use by Confessional Reformed Baptists like you find in some individual churches or 2nd LBCF subscription-based Associations like ARBCA today.

Right. What is interesting is that both the first, and the second LBC, were actually remakes of Calvinist/Reformed documents. The 1689 confession of course, was taken from the Westminster confession, as everyone knows. What is not known by many, is that the First London confession was taken from the 1596 "True Confession", of the English Separatists.
Who needs a History lesson?

The 1644 is way before the 1646 WCF. It was a retaliation to some things that were leveled against the RBC or Particalar Baptists. You have a lot to learn. The Second was taken from the Savoy Declaration.

My friend,

First, you have not read my post carefully. I stated the FIRST London Baptist Confession, came from the 1596 True Confession (Creeds and Platforms of Congregationalism, pages 59-74, Walker, Williston. This was drafted by the Congregationalist Separatist Church, started by Johnson and Ainsworth (the names are from memory, so it might be incorrect.)

This confession was the model that the 1644 confession used (Baptist Confessions of Faith, by Lumpkin, William, 146.)

Now, in regards to the Second LBCF. You are wrong. Yes, the Savoy declaration was consulted as well. I was not trying to give a course on Baptist history. However, Elder William Collins used the Westminster, in addition to the Savoy, as his model (Lumpkin, 236). If you will turn your attention to the documents themselves, for but a moment, I can prove to you this unequivocal reality, straight from the source. I will give you several articles of each Confession to compare, showing word-for word agreement between the 2LBCF, and the WCF, AGAINST the Savoy declaration. I will go ahead and post one example in full.

WCF Chapter VI, article one, states (in part)..

"God was pleased, according to his wise and holy counsel, to permit, having purposed to order it to his own glory."

The 2LBCF, same chapter and article, quotes this word for word. It is absent from the Savoy Declaration.


Other articles after this model, include
Chapter 10, article 3 ,
Chapter 16, article 1,
Chapter 18, Article 2,
WCF Chapter 16, article 2, SDFO Chapter 17, article 2, 2LBCF Chapter 17 (or 18, depending on version) article 2,

To name but a few. In all of these instances, the LBCF and WCF have word-for-word agreement, disagreeing with the Savoy declaration.



First off I was not arguing the point from what the 1644 was modeled after.

I read your quotes and Lumpkin.

If you take a look at this comparision chart between the Westminster, the Savoy, and the 1677, you will see the 1677 was more word for word with the Savoy, despite what Lumpkin said. It is by far more linked to the Savoy.

Tabular Comparison of 1646 WCF, 1658 Savoy Declaration, the 1677/1689 LBCF, and the 1742 PCF

It is color coded so you can see where they disagree and agree between the three documents. The 1677 is so more word for word and closer chapter and section parsing with the Savoy Declaration. I believe you will see this. I mean it is a lot more closer that there is no comparison. Lumpkin only makes the assertion on page 236.
 

bug

Puritan Board Freshman
Perhaps before we start using terms like 'murderer' etc we should consider that we live in an age very different to that of the Reformers and Anabaptists - will future generations of Christains look back at us and question our motives and actions in the way some are doing? What will they think? We are all creatures of our period of history, and as fallen creatures we all act in ways that mirror that culture all too often. Would any of us done half as well as the likes of Zwingli I wonder? Perhaps a little effort at understanding just what was a stake in these disputations might help as well.
 

Semper Fidelis

2 Timothy 2:24-25
Staff member
:judge: The thread is open but let me remind people of something:

1. The question is why the magisterial Reformeers considered the Anabaptists to be heretics.
2. This isn't a navel-gazing opportunity to discuss why you believe they were.
3. This isn't a debate about whether they were right.

Stick to the OP. Show some self-restraint and ability to actually interact with what the person asks help with.

If you want an answer to the question, I don't have the time to put it together but you can go here:

Search the Institutes

Search each book for "anabaptist" and you'll find some of the answers wrt Calvin.
 

Marrow Man

Drunk with Powder
A couple of examples from Calvin:

But since those frantic spirits of whom I have spoken attempt to rob the Church of this the only anchor of salvation, consciences must be more firmly strengthened against this pestilential opinion. The Novatians, in ancient times, agitated the Churches with this dogma, but in our day, not unlike the Novatians are some of the Anabaptists, who have fallen into the same delirious dreams. For they pretend that in Baptism, the people of God are regenerated to a pure and angelical life, which is not polluted by any carnal defilements. But if a man sin after baptism, they leave him nothing except the inexorable judgment of God. In short, to the sinner who has lapsed after receiving grace they give no hope of pardon, because they admit no other forgiveness of sins save that by which we are first regenerated. But although no falsehood is more clearly refuted by Scripture, yet as these men find means of imposition, (as Novatus also of old had very many followers), let us briefly slow how much they rave, to the destruction both of themselves and others. In the first place, since by the command of our Lord the saints daily repeat this prayer, "Forgive us our debts," (Mat 6: 12), they confess that they are debtors. Nor do they ask in vain; for the Lord has only enjoined them to ask what he will give. Nay, while he has declared that the whole prayer will be heard by his Father, he has sealed this absolution with a peculiar promise. What more do we wish? The Lord requires of his saints confession of sins during their whole lives, and that without ceasing, and promises pardon. How presumptuous, then, to exempt them from sin, or when they have stumbled, to exclude them altogether from grace? Then whom does he enjoin us to pardon seventy and seven times? Is it not our brethren? (Mat 18: 22). And why has he so enjoined but that we may imitate his clemency? He therefore pardons not once or twice only, but as often as, under a sense of our faults, we feel alarmed, and sighing call upon him. (ICR, 4.1.23).

This [Augustine] says on account of the moroseness of the Donatists, who, when they saw faults in the Church which the bishops indeed rebuked verbally, but did not punish with excommunication, (because they did not think that any thing would be gained in this way), bitterly inveighed against the bishops as traitors to discipline, and by an impious schism separated themselves from the flock of Christ. Similar, in the present day, is the conduct of the Anabaptists, who, acknowledging no assembly of Christ unless conspicuous in all respects for angelic perfection, under pretence of zeal overthrow every thing which tends to edification[6]. "Such, (says Augustin. contra Parmen. Lib. 3 c. 4), not from hatred of other men's iniquity, but zeal for their own disputes ensnaring the weak by the credit of their name, attempt to draw them entirely away, or at least to separate them; swollen with pride, raving with petulance insidious in calumny, turbulent in sedition. That it may not be seen how void they are of the light of truth, they cover themselves with the shadow of a stern severity: the correction of a brother's fault, which in Scripture is enjoined to be done with moderation, without impairing the sincerity of love or breaking the bond of peace, they pervert to sacrilegious schism and purposes of excision. Thus Satan transforms himself into an angel of light, (2Co 11: 14), when, under pretext of a just severity, he persuades to savage cruelty, desiring nothing more than to violate and burst the bond of unity and peace; because, when it is maintained, all his power of mischief is feeble, his wily traps are broken and his schemes of subversion vanish."(ICR, 4.12.12)

They were, in part, perceived to be schismatics similarly to the Novatians and Donatists (who would be considered heretics).
 
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