In the year 1560 three brethren, named Anthonis Claes, Joris Tieleman, and Hans de Backer, were apprehended, examined and tortured; but they adhered unswervingly to their faith and the truth they had learned and accepted, and thus walked in the narrow path to the new Jerusalem; wherefore they were condemned to death by the enemies of the truth, and drowned in a tub. But even as they had to drink in the temporal death, so eternal life will be poured out to them by God.
In the same year three other pious brethren sealed the truth with their death at Antwerp. One of them was Peter, a Spaniard, to wham, a few years previously, while yet in Spain, a brother from Amsterdam, named Jacob Jans Ruytenburgh, had spoken, and conversed with him different time about God and His Word. He finally came with the brother, by ship, to Antwerp, leaving his wife and children at St. Lucas, with the intention of returning to them after a while, or to come and get them. After his arrival at Antwerp, he, through ignorance, was at first shunned by the brethren, who feared treachery, since he was a Spaniard; however, upon sufficient examination and instruction, he was admitted not only to the assembly, but also as a brother and fellow member of the church of God, and received baptism upon confession of his faith, which he truly and frankly declared before the congregation. Shortly after, when he was about to return to Spain, to gain his wife and children, as also, some of his friends and acquaintances, and to bring them to the true knowledge of the truth, he was apprehended by the margrave, who was himself astonished to have a Spaniard fall into his hands. He was kept imprisoned for a long time, and the Spaniards took great pains with him; but he, orally as well as in writing, clearly demonstrated the truth to them, in his own language, notwithstanding which they sought to induce him to apostatize. But as nothing could move him, remaining steadfast, he finally boldly sealed the truth and his love to God with his death, with Gomer the mason and Jacob the goldsmith, who were together drowned in a tub, for the name of Christ.
A. D. 1560, also three imprisoned sisters, namely, Deaf Betgen, Betgen of Ghent, and Lijsken Smits, were sentenced to death and drowned in a tub, in the city of Antwerp, because they could not be brought from the truth and the love of their Saviour.
There was a pious man named Lenaert Plovier, about thirty-six years of age, who was a native and
resident of Meenen, in Flanders, and by occupation a woolen-draper; and as he was a man of good report among all, he was elected appraiser of woolen cloths.
Thus said Lenaert Plovier, through the grace of God, came to the knowledge of the truth, about A. D. 1555. Having, on account of his competency, been re-elected, to continue his appraisership, he refused to take the oath; but his fellow drapers were nevertheless satisfied with him, saying, "Only come with us to the city hall, and show yourself;" for they thought that the bailiff would pay no attention to the matter. But the bailiff could not endure his views, and f rom that time on Plovier had to suffer much persecution, and dwell in secrecy. Afterwards, about the year 1558, he fled with his wife and children to Antwerp, where they gained their livelihood by dealing in silk. But as a great persecution was raging also there, he resolved to take up his residence in Friesland. He sent his wife and their four children ahead, after a sojourn of a little over a year at Antwerp, intending to follow them as soon as he had finished his business. He then traveled with his merchandise to the cold Ypres fair, whence he returned to Antwerp, where, stopping a while, he learned that the margrave was about to sally forth for the purpose of apprehending those who would not live according to their institutions. Lenaert left the city in order to warn some of his fellow believers by night. He met the margrave and his troop, who, accosting him, perceived from his answers that he was not like they, and hence asked him, whether he did not have a testament with him. He replied, "Yes." Thereupon they apprehended him, and he was thus taken to Antwerp and imprisoned there. When his parents heard of this, as also his fatherin-law, who resided at Meenen, and was a prominent man, they came to Antwerp in haste, with Lenaert's mother. The father thought to procure his release from prison by shrewdness, or by bribing the margrave, representing that his sonin-law was not a resident of Antwerp, but had only come there to transact his business. The margrave gave them far words, saying to the mother, who had been several nights in prison with her son, "Go home; your son will soon be released from prison." They therefore departed, supposing that the promise given them would be kept. When the parents had gone away, Lenaert was examined and questioned concerning his faith, and whether he was baptized, which he freely confessed, expressing his determination to adhere to the truth he had accepted, not considering his wife and his four children, whom he nevertheless dearly loved, as appears from six letters which he wrote to them from prison; two of which letters are given here.
After a brief imprisonment, this pious brother Lenaert, with two young maidens, named Janneken and Maeyken of Aix-la-Chapelle, was sentenced to death, to be drowned, which was done in the following manner: They were put into bags, and thrust into wine casks, and thus drowned in prison by night, about a fortnight before Easter, in the year 1560 (reckoning the beginning of the year from New Year's day). Some of his fellow believers having learned that pious Lenaert Plovier and Janneken and Maeyken of Aix-la-Chapelle were to offer up their sacrifice in the night, they came to listen at the door of the prison. Among them were Joost Nose and Kestine van Damme, who gave a good testimony concerning it; they both died at Franeker, in Friesland. Thus the aforesaid three pious witnesses of Jesus Christ were tried as gold in the fire, and as they were found upright, they shall receive the eternal crown of honor and joy, with all the saints of God. Amen. This was written by the son of the aforesaid Lenaert, and testified to be true.
Dear and much beloved wife , after affectionate greeting, know that I am still of good cheer, and that I am also well according to the flesh, which I hope is the case also with you and those with you. But I should like to hear that it is your determination to follow the Lord in all righteousness; for we know not when the Lord will visit us, that we must appear before the judgment seat of Christ, where everyone will receive his reward, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. Hence, dear Maeyken, be obedient to the Gospel ere that day comes, since it will come as a thief in the night (I Thess. 5:2); for this is the true way that leads to life eternal, which has sometimes been presented to you, and besides which there is salvation in no other; for Christ says, "I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." Now if Christ is Himself the way, the truth, and the life, let us seek to follow the truth, and to walk this way, that we may have life. For it is written, that the Lord shall come to be glorified in His saints, and to be admired in all them that believe, and for the punishment of all them that have not obeyed the Gospel, who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord. II Thess. 1:7.
Dear Maeyken, though sometimes persecution, tribulation and distress arise, yea, bonds and imprisonment, as is daily seen in us and in others who want to be obedient to the truth; let us not on this account cease to walk this way, or to follow the truth. For Christ says, "The world shall rejoice, but ye shall mourn and be sorrowful; but your sorrow shall be turned into joy." John 16:20. Hence, dear Maeyken, regard not father or mother, or children, nor anything that is in the world; for Christ says, "He that loveth aught more than me is not worthy of me. He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me." Matt. 10:37. For to be carnally minded is death, yea, enmity against God, because
it is not subject to the law of God, but this is a carnal mind: to love father, mother, children, or aught that is of the world, more than God, or for their sakes to cease to follow the truth, or on account of temporal occupation, or temporal loss, or because we have many .children and have anxiety how we are to provide food for them. Christ says, "Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all that you need shall be added unto you." Matt. 6:33. Therefore do your best herein, my dear Maeyken, this is my heart's request of you, this I pray you.
I also inform you, that I was at the Ypres fair. Having returned to Antwerp, our cousin Hendrick and I took a walk out of. the city, so that it grew rather late; and when we drew near the city, we met the servants (or thief catchers) of the city, who apprehended us, so that we could not escape their hands and keep our faith. Therefore, dear Maeyken, though the Lord has now so ordered it, that I have been apprehended, and the time is come that the Lord will visit me, be not discouraged, neither grieve very much,t though I know that you will grieve; but do not grieve too much, lest you have to take to your bed, or fall sick; for it is for the truth. Some of the hardest things for my flesh to bear are, that I must leave you and the children, that I cannot help you to provide food for them, nor be a protector, and that you are not minded like we are; but I hope that this will come about in course of time. Hence, dear Maeyken, do your best to be obedient to the Gospel, that, if we never see each other again according to the flesh; we may .find each other hereafter. I should have liked to see and converse with you once more; but my time is but brief perhaps: It also would be very hard for you and for me, to part from each other, although it is very, hard for me now, though we do not talk with each other; but we must love God above everything else; rather forsake all, than forsake God. Hence, if you come here, or intend to do so, do your best to follow the truth, and to bring up the children in the fear of the Lord. Herewith I commend you to the Lord. Written at Antwerp, in bonds. This occurred on, Sunday evening after the Ypres fair. By me Lenaert P., your husband. Greet me Franse much, and tell him to pray the Lord for me, that I may finish my course to the praise of the Lord. '
Dear and, much beloved children N., aged, etc., when your ather was taken from you, it was not for any crime, but for.the testimony of Jesus, and because I loved you' unto death, and I wish that when you have reached the years of understanding, you would seek your salvation, as Christ has taught us. Matt. 6:33. Hence I have written you a brief admonition, that when you. have come to the years of understanding, you, remembering this, may seek your salvation.
Therefore, dear children, see that you obey your mother, and honor her, for it is written, "Honor thy father and thy mother, that thou mayest live long in the earth, and that it may be well with thee; for he that curseth his father, or his mother, shall surely be put to death." Ex. 20:12; Eph. 6:2, 3; Ex. 21:17. And be not obstinate, or gainsaying, or quarrelsome, but kind. Neither lie; for it is written, "The mouth that lieth slayeth the soul; for a liar has no part in the kingdom of God, nay, his part shall be in the burning lake." Wisd. 1:11; Revelation 21:8. Be industrious with your hands, so as to help your mother gain a living. Gen. 3:19, Eph. 4:28. Be not backward in learning to apply yourself to books, so that when you have attained to years of understanding, you may seek your salvation. Be always modest in your words, as becomes children. And when you have come to years of understanding, take a Testament, and see what Christ has left and commanded us there; for all Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works. II Tim. 3:16, 17. For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world; for man doth not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the Lord. Tit. 2:11, 12; Deut, 8:3; Matt. 4:4.
Behold, dear children, that the Word of the Lord is food for the soul, by which the soul must live; and he that does not govern his life according to these words, is threatened with eternal damnation, as Christ says, "Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." John 3:3. Hence Christ says, "Repent ye, and believe the gospel; for the axe is laid unto the root of the trees; therefore, every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire." Mark 1:15; Matt. 3:10. Therefore, dear children, see that you escape punishment; for those who do not obey the' Gospel shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord. II Thess. 1:9:
O dear children, behold what punishment shall come upon him who does not obey,the Gospeleternal banishment from the face of God, and everlasting punishment. Hence, dear children, prepare while you have time. Though some tribulation may arise over those who seek to obey the Gospel, it will not last long when compared with that which is eternal: for we must enter into the kingdom of God through much tribulation. Acts 14:22. Therefore Peter says, "Think it not strange concerning
the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange things happened unto you: but rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy." I Pet. 4:12, 13. Even Christ our Teacher and Master had to enter into the kingdom of God through tribulation and suffering; and the servant cannot be more than his master; but it must be enough for the servant that he be as his master. Matt. 10:24, 25. Hence He says that He came not to bring peace upon earth, but a sword; for He saw beforehand, that the world should ill endure it, even as from the beginning it could not endure it; for they persecuted the prophets from the beginning, though they boasted that they had God for their Father; yet they could not endure the good things the prophets told them, nor their warnings; hence they persecuted, yea stoned and killed them; they did not even know Christ Himself, who did so many signs and mighty works among them, but crucifed Him. O dear children, lay to heart what Paul says, "All that will live godly shall suffer persecution" (II Tim. 3:12); and neglect not, on account of a little suffering,.to seek your salvation; for these sufferings are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us; for as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ; for it is written, "Behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life. Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all.the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth. Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown. Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out; and I will write upon him the name of my God; yea, to him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God; yea, he shall not be hurt of the second death; yea, he that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels; yea, to him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also . overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne." Rev. 2:10; 3:10;2:7,11;3:5,21.
Yes, dear children, behold what beautiful promises are given to those who overcome. Hence, fear not men, who can afflict us here for a short time only; for after this tribulation we shall rest from all our labors, under the altar, with those who were also slain for the Word of God, and shall appear with many thousand saints, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands, crying with a loud voice,"Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and the Lamb." They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the suit light on them, nor any heat; for the Lord will be their light, and shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no night there; and they shall need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God shall give them light, and they shall reign forever and ever. Rev. 14:13; 6:9; 7:9; 10, 16, 17; 22:5.
Therefore, dear children, lay this to heart; look to these beautiful promises given to them that overcome, and not to those who apostatize, for these are written in the earth. Rev. 2:7; Jer. 17:13. Hence, dear children, see that you fear the Lord, while He gives you time; for He shall come when it is not expected. Watch therefore, and wait for His coming. Isa. 55:6; Matt. 25:13.
This is the testament I leave you. Written at Antwerp, in prison, where I was confined for the testimony of Jesus. By me, your father,
In the year 1560 brother Nicholas Felbinger, or Schlosser, a willing minister of the Word of God, who was on trial yet, was apprehended, with another brother by the name of John Leytner, not far from Neumarkt, in Bavaria, where they had come on the first day after Judica,* in Lent, on their flight on account of the faith. They were taken to Neumarkt, where they were twice examined by the judge and his assessors, and interrogated especially with regard to infant baptism. But having clearly and thoroughly shown that Christ had not commanded it, but only the baptism of adults, who hear, understand, believe, and accept the Word of God, they were, early next morning, placed in a cart, and, escorted by horsemen and guards, sent to Landshut, where each was imprisoned separately, and Nicholas kept chained. Afterwards the council met, and summoned them before them; they spoke much with them, but could accomplish nothing.
They then sent two learned men, namely, two Dominicans, to them, who conversed with them about the sacrament, infant baptism, and why they had left the papal church; but the brethren answered them from the Word of God, that they had to leave it.
Hence they then tried them by torture, racking them severely, especially most severely when they wanted to know where they had lodged, and whither they intended to go. But Nicholas said, "We are not bound to tell you these things." They asked, "Why?" He said, "Because you confiscate their property, torture and kill them for it, and sin against them. Should we betray those who do us good? we do not betray even our enemieswhy then our friends?" They said:*"Then we will not cease to torture you, till you tell us," and
* Fifth Sunday in Lent.
left them lying on the rack a long time, until the executioner himself interceded in their behalf, and said, "Do desist; for though they be tortured all day, you will get nothing out of them."
Then the judge became enraged, and called them rogues and condemners of others. But Brother Nicholas said, "We condemn no one; but your sins condemn you, if you do not desist from them, this we testify according to the truth."
The superior judge asked, "What is truth?" The brother replied, "You would not understand it, though I should tell you; for you know as much what truth is, as did Pilate, who asked the same question." John 18:38.
After this, two doctors were sent from the monks to them, a distance of over nine leagues; who endeavored in many and various ways to turn them, but were not able to do it. Likewise the chancellor and the lord of Landshut came to them once, and assailed them; but they found them steadfast in their faith, and had to leave them steadfast, being unable to gain them by their false and seductive counsels.
Two priests and a doctor in the Scriptures then came to them, and vehemently argued with them about infant baptism; but Nicholas vigorously withstbod them with the Scriptures, and drove them from him.
After these, the chancellor and several Dominicans came to them, and sought to move them by suavity; but they valiantly withstood all the gates of hell, fully assured that they stood in the divine truth, which they faithfully and thoroughly defended, and said that they wanted to adhere to it in the simplicity of Christ. Thereupon the chancellor said to Brother Nicholas, "Are you simple? I cannot believe this; a hundred might come, before there should be one who could defend himself like you; but I consider you an enthusiast, even as many are found at present, who roam about without reason." But they boldly confessed and defended their faith, and God gave them a mouth and wisdom which the others were not able to resist. Luke 21:15.
After all this, they were sentenced to death by the children of Pilate, and Brother Nicholas' tongue was tied fast, that he should not speak to the people at the place of execution; towards the close, however, his tongue was freed so much that the two brethren could converse together.
John Leytner, whom the executioner proceeded to execute first, said to Nicholas, "Dear brother, if my death should terrify you, go forward first, and I will wait for the last." But brother Nicholas said, "Oh, no, Oh, no; I do not dread it." And thus John valiantly offered his neck to the sword, and was beheaded, Nicholas beholding it with intrepidity and boldness, as though it did not concern him. He then advanced also, knelt down, and offered his head, which was struck off for his faith, as bad been done to the other. Thus these two testified to the divine truth with their blood, which took place on the 10th of July, 1560.
A. D. 1560 there were brought before the court at Antwerp two pious Christians, named Joris and Joachim. As they were standing as sheep for the slaughter before the lords, the bailiff asked Joris whether he was rebaptized. He replied, "I am baptized according to the doctrine of Christ, as He commanded His apostles, saying: 'Go and preach to all nations. He that believeth and is baptized, shall be saved.' Matt. 28:19; Mark 16:16. Hence they must first be taught and believe, and then be baptized in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost."
The bailiff also asked Joachim whether he was baptized. He replied, "I hold to one baptism, one faith, one Lord, and God." Eph. 4:5, 6.
Then the lords sentenced them according to the king's mandate, whereupon Joachim, hearing his sentence, said, "My lords, we thank you for your trouble with us; but may God forgive you the blindness of your heart, and grant that you may become enlightened."
As they were coming out of the court, they said, "We are not ashamed of the Gospel" (Rom. 1:16); and while walking in the street, they sang
"O Lord forever in my thought Thou art;
My soul doth long to be close to Thy heart."
Thereupon Joachim said, "Fear not them that kill the body; for hereafter, when they mourn, we shall rejoice." Luke 6:23.
Thus they as giants in the faith pressed through the strait gate to the new Jerusalem. After they had come to the place where they were to offer up their burnt sacrifice, they gave each other the kiss of peace. Standing at the stake, Joachim said, "O Father, forgive them that inflict this suffering upon us; but we thank Thee that Thou hast made us worthy to suffer for Thy name; therefore, O Lord, assist us, and succor us with Thy help in this last extremity." Joris said, "Lord Thou knowest that I have sought Thee and my salvation; and for this cause I must now die. Therefore, O Lord, receive me graciously." He further said, "Citizens of Antwerp, fear not; though we die for the truth, Christ our Lord went before us, and we must follow Him." They then began to sing this farewell hymn, "Farewell, brethren and sisters all," etc. Thereupon they commended their spirits into the hands of God, and ended their lives in the fire. They now lie under the altar, and wait to be clothed with white linen raiment, and to shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of the Father, where they shall be served with new wine and heavenly bread. Rev. 6:9; 19:8; Matt. 13:43; 26:28; Rev. 2:17.
In the year 1560 a brother named Willem de Kleermaecker was apprehended for the truth, and sentenced to death, at Antwerp.
Having been brought into the court, he was asked by the bailiff, whether he was rebaptized. He replied, "Why do you ask concerning my baptism, and not regarding my life and faith; then you could pass a right judgment upon me, and this people could follow it?" The bailiff asked again whether he was not rebaptized. Willem said, "You want but one word, and I made a confession before this: judge rightly, and once more consider the matter well." The bailiff asked whether he was rebaptized. Willem said, "You alone have asked me until this; may I not now ask you?" The bailiff said, "Answer first; then I shall tell you." Willem said, "I wish you would once think of that day that shall burn as an oven, When the ungodly shall perish like stubble." Mal. 4:1. He further said (Mark 16:16) it is written, "He that believeth .and is baptized shall be saved." The bailiff said, "You are not asked concerning that." Willem said, "Infants cannot believe; therefore I had myself baptized upon my faith."
The lords. then went in, and Willem said to the people, "Repent and amend your ways." The bailiff forbade him to speak, but he said, "Do let me speak; for it cannot last long." Presently the lords returned, and Willem said, "My lords, judge not according to the king's decree, if you do not want to be lost; but think of that day which no one can escape, in which you will regret it, unless you become converted." He was then sentenced, and his sentence read to him; whereupon, though it was still early in the morning, he was taken to the marketplace, and there strangled and burnt at the stake. Thus he fought his way through as a valiant soldier of Christ.
In the same year, on the first Friday after St. Martin's day, brother John Korbmacher, a minister of the Word of God and of His church (who was frequently sent out into the work of the Lord), was apprehended for the faith and the Word of God, near Rosenhaus, in Bavaria, together with George Raeck, a deacon, and another brother named Eustace Kuter, who were together taken to Innspruck, and there delivered over to the authorities. John Korbmacher, on account of his being a minister, was taken to Fulleburg, where he was put into a deep tower full of vermin; bats fluttered about him; mice carried off his victuals, and numerous spooks haunted his abode, so that it would have terrified a person not possessed with a firm trust in God.
When the lord wanted to speak with him, he had him called by name, that he should quickly get ready and prepare himself for suffering. The other two brethren were imprisoned at Innspruck, in the Krauterthurm;and all three remained in confinement until the close of the year 1560. Afterwards, on the 2nd of January, the authorities severely examined John Korbmacher, as also Eustace, and George Raeck, each separately. They faithfully answered many articles, all of which were written down, together with their confession concerning them, and this was then sent to Vienna and elsewhere, as something new.
After this they were led back into the aforementioned towers or prisons, where they remained until the Friday after St. Vitus' Day, which was the 13th of June, when they were sentenced to death. On that occasion a great multitude was present, and the brethren spoke boldly to the lords of the court and jurors, showing to them, that the sentence and judgment which they passed upon them in the sight of God, since they condemned innocent blood, should rise up for a testimony of their condemnation. And when they said that they had to judge according to the imperial decree and mandate, John Korbmacher said, "O you blind judges, we must certainly judge according to our heart and conscience, if we want to render an account of it before God. Hence, if you judge according to the imperial mandate, how will you answer for it before God?" And Eustace said, "What have we to do with the imperial mandate that you read it to us? Read our confession, which we have testified with the holy, divine and biblical Scriptures to be the truth of God, for which we must suffer." Thus they boldly spake, and exhorted the people to repent. The brethren George Raeck and Eustace were led out of the court first, when George began to cry to the people, to repent, desist from sin, and also enter upon the way of truth, since it was the truth for which he was to be executed today.
Then John Korbmacher was also led out, so that they joyfully met at the place of execution, and praised God. A brother named Leonard Dax, went to them, and shook hands with them, and they took farewell of one another; on account of which they greatly rejoiced, and praised God, that they had seen a pious brother yet, who should inform the brethren and the church of their end. Then John Korbmacher, the minister, began to speak to the people, and to admonish them, to repent of their sins, and to follow the truth of God, that they might not be damned, but saved in Christ Jesus. Yea, he lifted up his voice with the utmost boldness, and said, "What I have taught and confessed is the divine truth, and I will testify to it with my blood." Thus he did not cease to preach repentance, so that the judge said several times, "O John, stop a little." John then stopped for a little while; but presently he spoke again, so that he became almost hoarse from speaking. Almost up to their last moment they exhorted the people to repentance; nor were they prevented from speaking,
but full liberty was given them to speak. They were also permitted to converse with each other. They also fervently prayed to God, praising and glorifying Him, that He had hitherto kept them courageous and stedfast, and praying Him that He would continue to thus faithfully keep them until death (which was now at hand), and receive their spirits into His hands, now that body and soul were about to separate.
Their sentence was then read, in which, among others, these articles were particularly mentioned. First: They do not believe that the holy body of Jesus Christ is in the ,sacrament, but observe the Supper as Christ observed it with His disciples. Secondly: They do not believe in infant baptism, but in the baptism of adults; as Christ commanded it. Thirdly: They believe in marriage (which article they confessed, and did not deny); and the like articles, which were written there, and read
as also, what they thought and confessed of the Roman church; but this was written in as vituperative language as it had been possible for the judge to put it.
They were then led to the place of execution; called the Schweinacker, near the Schafhuetten. There Eustace, who was feeble and sick according to the flesh, was beheaded first. After him Brother George Raeck cheerfully stepped forward to the executioner, and exclaimed with a joyful heart, "Here I forsake wife and children, house and home, body and life, for the faith and the divine truth." He then knelt down, and the executioner beheaded him also.
John Korbmacher was reserved for the last, who, when he beheld the other two lying there beheaded, said, "My brethren, you who have overcome shall inherit ail things, " The executioner then took him, tied him to a ladder, kindled the fire, and threw him alive into the same. He also laid the two beheaded bodies upon a pile of wood, and burnt them to ashes.
Thus did they testify their faith in Christ with their word, life and death, yea, voluntarily and patiently, with their body and blood, confessing that God gave them such strength as a blessing; and thus tthey with firm confidence departed from this world to go to the eternal fatherland.