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334 – Nov. 30 – This Day in Baptist History Past


 

Zwingli persecutes the Anabaptists

 

1525 – The following proclamation was published against the Anabaptists in Zurich, Switzerland by the Zwinglians: “…we ordain…that…all men, women, young men, and maidens, abstain from rebaptism, and from this time practice it no more; and that they bring their children to be baptized.” It went on to say that whoever refused to obey this public order would be punished by a fine of silver. Five years later harsher penalties were levied, including torture and death. The Anabaptists became the target of such inhuman abuses that defy description from both Rome and the Reformers. William Jones, In his History of the Christian Church wrote, “They were publicly whipped, drawn by the heels through the streets, racked till’ every bone was disjointed, had their teeth beat out, their noses, hands, and ears cut off, sharp pointed spears run under their nails, melted lead thrown on their naked bodies, had their eyes dug out, limbs cut off, ground between stones, broiled on gridirons, cast by heaps into the sea, crucified, scraped to death with shells, torn in pieces by boughs of trees, etc. When Peter Sager was burned, the town records recorded the following: “Paid to Master Garnancie for burning Peter Sager, 20 Shillings; for cords and stake, 10 shillings; for the pains of the executioner, 28 shillings; special watchmen during the execution, 17 shillings, 6 pfennigs; other amounts for twelve wagon loads of fuel and twenty-eight measures of wine for the dance at the court-house, in honor of the Count of Zil.” Our Anabaptist forefathers truly found themselves in a pincer movement between Rome on one side and the Reformers on the other. [This Day in Baptist History II: Cummins and Thompson, BJU Press: Greenville, S.C. 2000 A.D. pp. 655-56. Joseph Meyer, Baptists Establishers of Religious Liberty (Chicago: Private Printing, 1923), pp. 101-2.]    Prepared by Dr. Greg J. Dixon

 

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