Anabaptism Summary

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Weaver, J. Denny. BECOMING ANABAPTIST: The Origin and Significance of Sixteenth-Century Anabaptism. 2nd Edition Kindle Edition. Scottsboro, PA: Herald Press, 2012.

In this second edition of his seminal work Dr. J. Denny Weaver claims Anabaptism has earned the right to be called the believers church. He defines this through an emphasis on the "voluntary character" exhibited by the faith. This is explained as the membership choosing to join as adults opposed to being born into kinship with one another. An outsider might think that it is the denial of infant baptism that is the marker of Anabaptist thought. Weaver states that it is not the exclusivity of adult baptism rather than as infants, that defines Anabaptists but it is emblematic
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Weaver has published widely on the understanding of Anabaptist perspective in the twentieth century. His first edition of this work has been hailed by Bishop Will Willimon of the United Methodist Church as the first to trace the polygenesis of Anabaptism to a fusion of its concepts in modern thought. This modern view of Anabaptist roots brought forward by Dr. Weaver would include his own writings and lectures in areas of expertise such as nonviolence, the character of God and atonement theology. As to any part of Dr. Weaver's bias, in my studies I see him as not espousing a particular view but rather following his own areas of expertise. (The reader does have a responsibility for critical …show more content…
So much so, that he devotes a ten-page appendix to the book carefully refuting the work of another author. While his arguments are certainly cogent, this does not seem to be the appropriate place to contest the other's work. The battle seems to be over the ultimate Anabaptist theological roots. Does Anabaptism rest in the authority of Jesus or in a reformation of Christianity? This is a critical issue to be addressed but not in a format that appears as an appendage to this important