Karlstadt as the Father of the Baptist Movements: The Emergence of Lay Protestantism
Published: December 1984© 1984
368 Pages, 6.00 x 9.00 in
Ebook - PDF
Professor Pater presents a revolutionary appraisal of the origins of law Protestantism in the Radical Reformation. Karlstady's creative contributions to the Reformation in Wittenberg are analysed, and the traditional picture of Karlstadt as an epigone of Luther, challenging his mentor purely out of spite, is discarded.
Pater shows how Karlstadt clearly influenced Ulrich Zwingli's attitudes towards celibacy and radical liturgical reform, and uncovers historical links between Karlstadt and the Swiss Baptists, including the law theologians Felix Manz and Konrad Grebel. The author goes on to trade the influence of Karlstadt on Melchior Hoffman, who spread Baptist ideas in northern Europe. Finally Pater notes that it was via Menno Simons that Karlstadt and Hoffman had their greatest influence, for John Smyth, the founder of the Baptist movement in England, went to the Netherlands with his followers, where they applied for membership in a prominent Mennonite congregation, the Waterlander Baptist congregation in Amsterdam. Thus the impact of the Dutch Baptists [Mennonites] on the English Baptists is here established.