Tag Archives: Reformers

194 – July 12 – THIS DAY IN BAPTIST HISTORY PAST


foxe

Catholics and Protestants both engaged in burning Baptists

Protestant reformers were sometimes as guilty of atrocities as the Romanists against the Baptists

and Anabaptists. Catholics and Protestants taught that tradition, reason and Scripture made it the

pious duty of saints to torture and burn men as heretics out of pure love for their holiness and

salvation. Protestantism told them that it was a sacred duty to slaughter those as schismatics ,

sectaries, malignants, who corrupted the Church and would not live in peace with the Reformed.

The sad instances of persecution practiced against the Baptists by the Protestants in King Edward

VI’s reign are in the Latin version of Foxe’s Book of Martrs but were left out of his English

edition in order to protect the reputation of some of the martyrs of Queen Mary’s day who had

persecuted the Baptists during Edward’s reign. John Rogers, one of Foxe’s friends, called for

the death of those who opposed the baptism of infants. It was reported that Rogers declared

“That burning alive was no cruel death, but easy enough.” It is believed that Foxe responded

that Rogers himself may be the first to experience this mild burning. And so it was, Rogers was

the first to be burned when the Catholic Queen Mary came to the throne. During the last year

of Edward’s reign Humphry Middleton was cast into prison by the Archbishop. After Bloody

Mary arose to power, the bishops were cast into prison and Middleton was burned at Canterbury

on July 12, 1555. The time of baptism as well as the mode was debated at this time because

some of the Protestants immersed. So the issue was believer’s baptism v infant baptism. During

Mary’s reign the prisons were crowded because both of these positions were anathema to the

Catholic Mary. None was recorded by Baptists.

Dr. Greg J. Dixon: From This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/Thompson, pp. 285-86.

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193 – July 12 – This Day in Baptist History Past


 

Catholics and Protestants both engaged in burning Baptists

 

Protestant reformers were sometimes as guilty of atrocities as the Romanists against the Baptists and Anabaptists. Catholics and Protestants taught that tradition, reason and Scripture made it the pious duty of saints to torture and burn men as heretics out of pure love for their holiness and salvation. Protestantism told them that it was a sacred duty to slaughter those as schismatics , sectaries, malignants, who corrupted the Church and would not live in peace with the Reformed. The sad instances of persecution practiced against the Baptists by the Protestants in King Edward VI’s reign are in the Latin version of Foxe’s Book of Martrs but were left out of his English edition in order to protect the reputation of some of the martyrs of Queen Mary’s day who had persecuted the Baptists during Edward’s reign.  John Rogers, one of Foxe’s friends, called for the death of those who opposed the baptism of infants.  It was reported that Rogers declared “That burning alive was no cruel death, but easy enough.”  It is believed that Foxe responded that Rogers himself may be the first to experience this mild burning.  And so it was, Rogers was the first to be burned when the Catholic Queen Mary came to the throne. During the last year of Edward’s reign Humphry Middleton was cast into prison by the Archbishop. After Bloody Mary arose to power, the bishops were cast into prison and Middleton was burned at Canterbury on July 12, 1555.  The time of baptism as well as the mode was debated at this time because some of the Protestants immersed.  So the issue was believer’s baptism v . infant baptism.  During Mary’s reign the prisons were crowded because both of these positions were anathema to the Catholic Mary.   None was recorded by Baptists.

 

Dr. Greg J. Dixon: adapted From: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/Thompson, pp. 285-86.

 

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38 – Feb. 07 – THIS DAY IN BAPTIST HISTORY PAST


The Reformers Un-Spiritual Men
The reformers (I.E. Luther, Calvin, Zwingli, and others) could hardly be considered spiritual men. Even as they are held in high esteem by many groups, please be reminded that these men led in the persecution of the Anabaptists.
In 1807 Dr. Samuel Jones was pastor of the Baptist Church in Lower Dublin, Pennsylvania, where he served for over fifty years until his death in 1814.  On Feb. 7 that year, Dr. Jones preached a Century Sermon commemorating the Centennial of the Philadelphia Baptist Association.  In his famed message he said: “The reformation, which has been so much gloried in was but a poor piece of business, although it has been attended with valuable consequences.  The reformers shook off the Papal yoke, but in the main retained its principles and spirit.  They did not establish the right of free inquiry, Liberty of conscience, and the word of God as the only rule of faith and practice…They were influenced by worldly motives, connected religion with worldly establishments, were the abettors of tyranny and oppression, and even of persecution by fire and the sword.”
Freedom of religion in America came not through the theology of the reformation, but rather through the influence of our godly Baptist forebears.  The historian, Leonard Woolsey Bacon put it this way: “ other sects, mainly the Presbyterians had been effective in demanding their own liberties, the Friends and the Baptists agreed in demanding liberty of conscience, worship, and equality before the law, for all alike.  But the active labor in this cause was mainly done by the Baptists.
 
Dr. Dale R. Hart, adapted from:  This Day in Baptist History  III (David L. Cummins), pp. 77-78.

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05 – Jan. 05 – THIS DAY IN BAPTIST HISTORY PAST


Anabaptist Memorial in Zurich

[the] Anabaptists… realized their principles had long endured.
 On this date, Jan. 05, 1527 two outstanding Anabaptists paid the price for their faith.  Felix Manz, known as the Apollo of the Anabaptists, was drowned in Lake Zurich for his testimony for Christ.  George Blaurock, considered the Hercules of the movement, was stripped to the waist and severely beaten.  Many church historians speak of the Anabaptists as mere heretics.  Franklin Hamlin Littell, in The Origins of Protestantism (New York: The Macmillan Co. 1964), wrote, “Information on the…[Anabaptists] has been notoriously scarce and has rested in the main upon hostile polemics.”  It is apparent that the Anabaptists in the days of the Reformers realized their principles had long endured.  They maintained, according to Littell, the “…principle that the True Church could not have been destroyed since the founding. …”  Dr. Roland H. Bainton connects Anabaptists with the ancient Donatists he when acknowledges that “The parallels between the Anabaptists and Donatists were however, more than superficial.”  One of the things he wrote of was their similar enemies and persecutions and enemies.  He also said, “To call these people Anabaptists, that is rebaptizers, was to malign them, because they denied that baptism was repeated, inasmuch as infant baptism is no baptism at all.  The called themselves simply Baptists.  The offensive name was given to them to bring them under the Justinian Code which had been written against the Donatists.  Leonard Verdin, historian of the Christian Reformed Denomination wrote, “We know that at the time of the birth of the Hybrid [The Anabaptists of the days of the Reformation] there were already people who were called Anabaptists.”  Interestingly C. A. Cornelius (1819-1903) a Roman Catholic scholar was among the first historians to call for modern research of the Anabaptist movement.
Dr. Greg J. Dixon from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. IIII: Cummins /, pp. 9-10.
The picture above is a memorial in Zurich listing the names of 43 Anabaptists who were martyred by the Roman Catholic Hierarchy (Church/State) in the 16th Century. (Wickepedia)

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348 – Dec. 14 – THIS DAY IN BAPTIST HISTORY PAST


 They were beaten and imprisoned
December 14, 1662 – The State of Virginia, passed the following law: “Whereas many schismatical persons out of their averseness to the orthodox established religion, or out of new fangled conceits of their own heretical inventions, refused to have their children baptized. Be it therefore enacted by the authority aforesaid, that all persons that, in contempt of the divine sacrament of baptism, shall refuse when they carry their child to lawful the minister in that country to have them baptized shall be amesed two thousand pounds of tobacco, half to the publique.” Such statutes were directed at the Baptists, whose principles and convictions dictated that they baptize only believers on their confession of faith and who believed pedobaptism to be a Romish invention carried over into Protestantism by the Reformers. The Church of England increased her membership by pedobaptism, but the Baptists by evangelism and proselytizing. This difference of belief caused a head-on collision between the established religion, the Church of England, which tenaciously held to pedobaptism, and the lowly Baptists, who repudiated it and baptized all who believed and gave their testimony to their faith in Jesus Christ and His finished work on the cross for their salvation. Hawkes, the historian of the Episcopal Church of Virginia, said, “No dissenters in Virginia experienced for a time, harsher treatment than did the Baptists. They were beaten and imprisoned; and cruelly taxed by the authorities who devised new modes of punishment and annoyance.” The Charter of 1606 provided that the Church of England should be the only legal and official state church of Virginia. The bloody military code of 1611 required all adults of the colony to give account of their faith to the parish minister.
Dr. Greg J. Dixon from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins Thompson /, pp. 521-22.

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