This book is a history of Mennonites from the sixteenth century to the present. Though simply written, it reflects fine scholarship and deep Christian concern. The early Anabaptists advocated voluntary church memberships (a believers church), refusing to baptize infants. They rejected the sacramental system as a way of salvation, and the authority of state over church. The Anabaptists found guidance through direct Bible study by individuals and small groups. They accepts the words of Jesus as final authority. Called, "Sermon on the Mount Christians" by friend and foe alike, they believe that word and deed belong together in Christian living. Because their beliefs threatened the existing order, the Anabaptists were persecuted; this eventually diminished their missionary zeal. Various groups of Mennonites mgrated across Europe, then to North America, Russia, or later Latin America. Mennonite faith has often seemed strongest in areas of repression. Persecution makes Mennonites more conscious of who they are as Jesus' followers. The fastest-growing Menonite churches today are in Asia and Africa. Congregations from around the world are joined through the Mennonite World Conference.
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