What is Anabaptism?
Anabaptism is not a denomination, but a general term that applies to Mennonites, Amish, Hutterites, and the Brethren churches. It is marked by study of and adherence to the Word of God as laid out in the Bible, even where that flies in the face of the surrounding culture, and leads to mockery, punishment or death.
Anabaptism is a faith that works. Anabaptism means ‘rebaptism’, and has existed since the time of Christ - see Mark 1:8 regarding the baptisms John performs just prior to Christ’s appearance, or after His triumph over death in Acts chapter 19 when Paul finds and educates the Ephesians regarding the Holy Spirit."faith without works is dead" James 2:26
But wait - surely there is only one baptism?"There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all." Ephesians 4:4-6
You cannot be baptised in the true sense of the word more than once; what would there be left to forgive upon a second offering of your life? If you already submitted your life to God once, repented of your sins and asked God to forgive you, then by the grace of God, your faith in Jesus Christ bought forgiveness of all trespasses. But if you knew nothing when you were baptised, being an infant, or, as the Ephesians that Paul encountered, were miseducated entirely about the Word of God, then no sprinkling of water could have saved you before, and hence you realise that you still need to die with Christ."Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life." Romans 6:3,4
So yes, there is one baptism; the baptism you undertake when you believe in Jesus Christ, and are buried with Christ by baptism into death; the baptism that transforms you, that marks a new person.
Anabaptism is more than rebaptising
Anabaptism flourished during the Reformation, when the bible was being translated into common languages and thus finally studied directly by many people. Bible study groups were started (illegally) and people endeavoured to come closer to the Word of God with their lives, that their life might be a pleasing offering to the Lord. Rebaptising was made punishable by death, and since these Anabaptists, holding true to the word of God, would not lie, bounty hunters could simply ask everybody “Are you an Anabaptist?” and upon receiving their answer, take their head as well."Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution." II Timothy 3:12
Anabaptists strive for a consistent, Christ-centered life characterized by good works, forgiveness, forbearance and above all, love. As Anabaptists, we read in the Bible that we should live not for the things of this world, but for the treasures we lay up in the Kingdom of Christ. Hence, we will not seek to have riches, nor esteem in the eyes of earthly people, nor glory for ourselves; everything we do, we do for Christ Jesus who died so that we may be free.
Why this website?
We wish to knit together and make visible the Anabaptists of the Netherlands, so that seekers here might have some support, and Lord willing, that we might have an outpost of the Kingdom of Heaven here in the Netherlands. Isaiah 11:12
It is all too easy to fall into the traps that Satan sets on every side, to esteem oneself so highly that we become blind to the sinful thoughts, words and actions that our flesh tends towards if left unguarded. It would be enough to despair, were it not for the love and forgiveness the Lord shows us each day.
It is our hope that you find something inspiring here, and that any who feel called also feel welcome. It has been almost 300 years since there was an anabaptist church here. We pray for God’s blessing, that the church here as the body of Christ may, under His direction as our head, glorify God among people.