Roger Williams – The Bloody Tenet, 1644
- The blood of 100000 Catholics & Protestants has been spilled in the Wars of Religion in Europe – all for their religious beliefs & consciences. This is not something Jesus wanted.
- The Bible clearly comes out against all of this violence over religion.
- People like Calvin, Beza & Cotton (in New England) have founded a doctrine of persecution on the basis of religion.
- The Doctrine of persecution & the consequent spilling of blood is also the source of desire for vengeance.
- Civil States’ officers of justice are not spiritual or moral arbiters of Christianity & should not be used as such.
- It is the will & command of God that no matter what the religion is, the practitioner will be afforded freedom of Conscience. They are only to be put to the sword if they are an actual physical threat to a person or a nation.
- The goings-on in Israel in the Bible, with all the death & persecution, are all figurative & ceremonial & not something to for the modern world to follow.
- God has never required any uniformity of religion to be enforced in any city state. It’s the best way to bring about a civil war – to ravish the consciences of the servants of Jesus Christ.
- Holding uniformity of religion in a state makes us disclaim any hope of Christians converting Jews to our religion.
- Enforced uniformity of religion in a nation or civil state blurs what is religious & what is civil. It denies God & Jesus what is theirs.
- The permission of other religions is the only way to procure a well-founded & long-lasting peace.
- True civility & Christianity may flourish in a state where many different faiths are allowed to grow, even if these faiths are diverse & contrary.
- While I’m pleading for truth & innocence,
& against bloodshed & religious persecution, I should warn everybody to
be prepared to be on the business end of it. Whether you are talented or not,
how can you claim to be a follower of Christ & pursue this horrible
- If Jesus & Paul were here today, whose side you think they’d be on? The Catholics? The Protestants? Each one would claim it’d be their side.
- But if you think that weapons can bring you votes for your side, which weapons do you think that Jesus would authorize? Don’t all men hate their persecutor, claim about cruelty & tyranny?
- 2 mountains of guilt lie on the backs of all
those who claim Christ
- 1 – The blasphemies of idolatry, superstitions & unchristian conversations
- 2 – The bloody, irreligious & inhumane oppression & destruction we perform under the name of Christ
- God will not look kindly on these acts, as is
mentioned in Revelations.
- 6 years of preaching Protestantism King Edward kindled the flames of Queen Mary’s persecutions of Protestants.
- Who can deny that after all these years of Protestantism being spread that the blowback from Catholicism isn’t going to be a million times worse?
- I don’t hold out hope for anything until the
flames die down. Persecution just leads to more persecution. Whatever side is
on the offensive does not change my faith one bit. It just breaks my heart to
see people not explore their faith & to see the dead souls as a result of
these Wars of Religion.
- 1 – The proud cry out about heresies, schisms, etc., when they ought to be more concerned the poor.
- 2 – Whatever brand of religion you practice, if you practice it without faith & true belief, you are following a sinful worship. In civil matters, we may be servants of men. But in the spiritual domain, we must remain servants to God. To do anything else is wrong in Christianity.
- 3 – Without searching for God & trying a
religion that strikes him to be true, a man cannot attain faith & right
- The English Parliament has allowed English Bibles in the poorest English houses & allowed men & women, poor & rich alike, to search the Scriptures. But if they don’t believe as the Church wants them to believe, they are punished. This is often the case in Catholic countries but they don’t have access to the Bible.
- 4 – We must hold fast upon the loss of a crown. We must not let go for all the current upheaval. We hold the truth to be dear & we can’t sell it out. Our purpose should be saving souls. Let’s focus on living like God wants us to live rather than a struggle between competing religions.