By Harold S. Bender
"Judged via the reception it met by the hands of these in strength, either in Church and kingdom, both in Roman Catholic and in Protestant international locations, the Anabaptist stream was once some of the most tragic within the background of Christianity; yet, judged by way of the rules, which have been placed into play via the lads who bore this reproachful nickname, it needs to be reported some of the most momentous and important undertakings in man’s eventful spiritual fight after the reality. It collected up the profits of past events, it's the religious soil out of which all nonconformist sects have sprung, and it's the first undeniable statement in smooth background of a programme for a brand new kind of Christian society which the trendy international, particularly in the USA and England, has been slowly realizing—an totally unfastened and self reliant spiritual society, and a kingdom within which each guy counts as a guy, and has his percentage in shaping either Church and State." those phrases of Rufus M. Jones represent the best characterizations of Anabaptism and its contribution to our sleek Christian tradition to be present in the English language.
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They had drunk of the waters which had flowed from God's sanctuary, yea, the water of life. They realized that God helped them to bear the cross and to overcome the bitterness of death. The fire of God burned within them. Their tent they had pitched not here upon earth, but in eternity, and of their faith they had a foundation and assurance. Their faith blossomed as a lily, their loyalty as a rose, their piety and sincerity as the flower of the garden of God. The angel of the Lord battled for them that they could not be deprived of the helmet of salvation.
Troeltsch rejected the theory of the socioeconomic origin of the Anabaptists. 15. Albrecht Ritschl, Geshichte des Pietismus (Bonn, 1880). Cf. R. Friedmann, "Conception of the Anabaptist," Church History (December 1940) IX, 351. 16. Ludwig Keller, Die Reformation und die älteren Reformparteien (Leipzig, 1885). Cf. also Friedmann, op. , 352. 17. Max Göbel, Geschichte des Christlichen Lebens, etc. (Coblentz, 1848), I, 134. Ritschl, op. " Ritschl (op. " 18. Horsch, op. , 289. 19. Letter of Conrad Grebel to Thomas Müntzer, Sept.
Both certainly expected the preaching of the Word and the ministration of the sacraments to bear fruit in an earnest Christian life, at least among some, but they reckoned with a permanently large and indifferent mass. In taking this course, said the Anabaptists, the reformers surrendered their original purpose, and abandoned the divine intention. 24 The Anabaptists, however, retained the original vision of Luther and Zwingli, enlarged it, gave it body and form, and set out to achieve it in actual experience.
Anabaptist Vision by Harold S. Bender