Hughes Old vs. The Anabaptists

Thomas Munzter

Thomas Munzter: Anabaptist Leader

My understanding of reformed worship has been greatly aided by the scholarship of Hughes Old. He died on May 24th. His works are numerous and influential throughout the Christian world. He wrote a seven volume history of preaching. The first book I read by him was Worship: Reformed According to Scripture.  I have since read numerous other books by him, as well as articles and listened to lectures. I have enjoyed all the books I have read by him. One lesser known work you may want to check out is his Leading in PrayerIt contains dozens of written prayers for various parts of worship, such as confession of sin and prayers of praise.  When you read it, you will also get a sound theology of prayer as he discusses what different prayers are supposed to accomplish in worship. Here are a few of my favorite quotes from his book The Shaping of the Reformed Baptismal Rite in the Sixteenth Century.  The bold title before each quote is mine.  Grebel, Muntzer, Hubmaier, and Denck were all Anabaptist leaders.  One can see how much of modern, evangelical Christianity has traces of Anabaptist theology in it.

A Church Free from Sin?

For the circle of Conrad Grebel, as for Muntzer, believer’s baptism was the one key reform for the Church. If only those who gave evidence of a firm and mature faith were baptized, then the Church would be free from all kinds of impurities. Believer’s baptism would be the effective sword used to separate the true Christian from Christendom.

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