Church History: The Anabaptists, Part 2

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14 Responses

  1. Xenia says:

    Today, we still face the dangers of extra biblical revelation and apocalyptic interpretations of current events…,<<<

    I am not one who believes we can only hear from God via the Bible so how does one actively listen to God without falling into delusional thinking?

    Also, this goes to show that you don't have to be a "Left Behind" dispensationalist to have extreme ideas about the End of the World! In fact, if you want to hear some wild ideas based on current events, visit your local Orthodox Monastery, especially those founded by Elder Ephraim.

  2. Michael says:

    Xenia…don’t leave us wondering !
    Who is Elder Ephraim and what is he teaching?

  3. Xenia says:

    Elder Ephraim is a Greek monastic who came to America with the goal of planting Mt. Athos-style monasticism here in America. He’s founded probably 20 monasteries all over the US for both men and women.

    As amillennialists, we are expecting the world to get worse, for Anti-Christ to appear, and then the 2nd coming of Christ. This being the case, we can, like dispensationalists, look to current events for hints that The End is Near.

    Monastics are really into this kind of speculation. The more conservative the monastery, the wilder the speculations, it seems. Elder Ephraim’s monasteries are the strictest of the strict and he sees apocalyptic significance in everything that happens. They are out of step with ordinary parish Orthodoxy, which might moan over something they see on the news and sigh that “The End is Near” but then go on about their business.

    But I suspect that when all is said and done we will discover that the monastics were probably right all along.

    By the way, my husband and I are planning a visit to St. Anthony’s monastery in Arizona this fall, the headquarters of Elder Ephraim himself.

    Elder Ephraim is a controversial figure. He promotes a very strict form of Orthodoxy that attracts many young people but seems cultish to their parents who are often more interested in their parish’s Greek food festival than in traditional Orthodox asceticism.

  4. Jim says:


    Do you know a guy with a greek last name and white hair who has a Mercedes with a vanity plate that says, MRY JACK?

  5. Xenia says:

    Jim, no. Who is he?

  6. Jean says:

    Michael, thanks for this week’s church history lessen.

  7. Jim says:


    My brother.

  8. Xenia says:

    Ah! I will keep my eyes pealed for him, then.

  9. Jim says:

    He’s been there 10 years, and I’d guess that you guys run in different circles. He’s 65 and never been married, and thinks Christianity is a mental illness.

  10. Xenia says:

    Then I won’t look for him at the Greek Church.

    Yah, if he’s got a Mercedes, we run in different circles.

  11. Babylon's Dread says:


    What did you do to your brother to make him think that?

  12. Jim says:


  13. Babylon's Dread says:

    I love this article. I see charismania and apocalyptico … my nuts and theirs.

  14. Bob says:

    Xenia asks the most important question that can be asked,

    “I am not one who believes we can only hear from God via the Bible so how does one actively listen to God without falling into delusional thinking? ”

    Having come from a Pentecostal background I am hugely bothered by personal revelation and the “spiritual” channeling many do in the faith. Most of the time I find people are using such visions and words as a means to establishing their own personal authority on the things of God without the work of coming to know God through study and life.

    But on the other hand much of our church authority and structure comes from the study and discipline to learn the traditions of the organizations and then to be recognized via those organizations as one with authority.

    The tension between the two is, to me at least, the heart of the Anabaptist problem described in the thread and exists with us today. Where does the walk with God in Jesus our Messiah lead us and how do we know it is the Spirit who leads us there? Sovereignty of God works, right?

    I think those who learn to love God, and the finished work in Jesus, learn the most important lesson of all, contentment in all things.

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