“… I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held” (Revelation 6:8).

Thursday, April 26, 2007

HANS BRET, A. D. 1576

Engraving by Jan Luiken, Martyrs Mirror, courtesy Mennonite Library and Archives.

For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to
be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us
” (Romans 8:17).

... Thus he (Hans Bret) was brought back from the court into prison, and confined and held there till the following day, which was Saturday; then, in the morning, the executioner came to him into prison, in order to screw fast his tongue, close his mouth, and prevent his speaking. O miserable work!

Murderers, and the very worst criminals have the privilege and permission of freely using their tongue; but, behold here a follower, of Christ, a child of trod, a servant of faith, one separated from the world, in whom dwells righteousness and no cause of death is found-behold, how he is prepared for death by closing his mouth and screwing fast his tongue, that the truth may not be proclaimed, righteousness not heard, nor any testimony be given of the name of Christ. O Christ, look down, and succor Thy saints.

When the executioner had come to him, he commanded him to put out his tongue, which he (faithful and pious servant of God), willingly did, since he had not a member on his body, which he was not willing to deliver up to suffering for the name of Christ, being well assured that all the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the joy and glory which God has promised them that overcome. Matt. 10:22; Romans 8:18; Rev. 2:7.

And when he put out his tongue, the executioner fastened it with a piece of iron, and screwed it very tight with a vise or screw, and then touched the end of the tongue with a hot iron, that swelling, the screw might not slip off or become loose. O bitter cruelty and great tyranny.

When they had thus closed his mouth, and screwed fast his tongue, the fire with which he was to be offered up being already prepared in the market place, they led him forth, with his hands tied together, from prison, and placed him into a wagon, to convey him to the marketplace, to the spot where his sacrifice for the Word of truth was to take place....

HANS BRET, A. D. 1576

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