Brad posts the reasons given by the authorities for the torture and murder of Michael Sattler, one of the key figures in sixteenth century Anabaptism:
“First, that he and his adherents have acted contrary to the mandate of the Emperor.
“Secondly, he has taught, held and believed that the body and blood of Christ are not present in the sacrament.
“Thirdly, he has taught and believed that infant baptism does not conduce to salvation.
“Fourthly, they have rejected the sacrament of extreme unction.
“Fifthly, they have despised and condemned the mother of God and the saints.
“Sixthly, he has declared that men are not to swear before the authorities.
“Seventhly, he has commenced a new and unheard of custom in regard to the Lord’s Supper, placing the bread and wine on a plate, and eating and drinking the same.
“Eighthly, he has left the order, and married a wife.
“Ninthly, he has said that if the [Muslims] should invade the country, no resistance ought to be offered them; and if it were right to wage war, he would rather take the field against the Christians than against the [Muslims]; and it is certainly a great matter, to set the greatest enemies of our holy faith against us.”
—Thieleman J. van Braght, The Bloody Theater or Martyrs Mirror of the Defenseless Christians (translated by Joseph F. Sohm; Scottdale: Mennonite Publishing House, 1951), p. 416
Many of these charges are completely baseless the others are twisted half-truths at best . . . save one. It is true that Sattler and his followers acted contrary to the mandates of the Emperor when it contradicted the commands of Jesus.