MEET A HERETIC Maybe you are one!
Over the years since I began this website, most readers who contacted me had in common this one complaint, that they found themselves alienated from their families and churches. It is natural that one who discovers exciting truths in the Bible wants to share them with loved ones. It is also human nature that those loved ones feel fearful of any idea which conflicts with their Sunday School lessons. Jesus commands each of us to seek Truth but only rare few dare to do it because they will be accused of heresies. Organized religions are too insecure to tolerate different opinions, so they find safety behind locked doors and curtained windows through which no spark of unapproved light can be permitted.
What happens to those rare individuals who dare to seek God's Truth? They find themselves alienated from people whom they loved. If you are such a person, you should know that you are part of a large family of heretics and martyrs (witnesses) in whom the Holy Spirit has worked. I want to list a few heretics/martyrs below, and will continue to add to this list whenever I am able to do so. These witnesses are champions of God who deserve to be remembered.
Each religious sect sets forth doctrines with which all members must agree in order to find acceptance within the group. In every religious denomination through history, anyone who questioned a doctrine, either clergy or layman, was automatically excluded from the group. When the Roman Catholic Church ruled all of Europe, it killed such persons, usually at burning pyres. Most often it was one who had found a chance to read the forbidden Bible who sincerely wanted to share his joyous news with his friends. While the Protestant Reformation corrected a few of the worst errors, the newly forming groups established doctrines not much better, and then locked-in their creeds at that 16th century mindset, never allowing the Holy Spirit to work further insights in seekers of Truth. That is now four centuries of intolerance toward individuals in whom the Holy Spirit worked. Today, churches don't kill dissenters at fiery stakes, but they use other tactics equally effective to keep the Spirit in check.
Many years ago I wrote a paper on the subject of heresy. Click this link to it.
CLICK ON A NAME FOR THE STORY OF ONE OF GOD'S HEROES.
SEBASTIAN FRANCK (1499 - 1542) "To substitute Scripture for the self-revealing Spirit is to put the dead letter in the place of the living Word..."
HANS DENCK (1495 - 1527) "It seems to me an unjust law that it should not be permissible for one man to think differently from another."
GIORDANO BRUNO (1548 - 1600) After reading Copernicus, Bruno dared to suggest the idea of infinity, and that the Sun was a star. He was burned at the stake.
MICHAEL SERVETUS (1511 - 1553) He hailed Christ as his sole Master, and enjoined Christians to turn from the Christ of Dogma to the Christ of the Bible.
SEBASTIANUS CASTELLIO (1515 - 1563) He wrote and argued against the cruel tortures and killings of Christians over simple differences of opinions.
THOMAS MUNTZER (1490 - 1525) It would be a betrayal of Christ for the Reformers to make the path to Calvary an easy, comfortable, and popular middle-class religion.
MARTYRS. The word means "witnesses." Christians who were killed because they would not deny Jesus as their Lord. American Christians have some heroes to emulate!
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