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Quakers (Friends, society of)

Simultaneously with Baptists in England and Scotland there appeared a sect by the name of Quakers, originated by G. Fox. Brought by his religious reflections into a state of "delight" (allurement), he considered himself called upon from above to establish true Christianity and in 1647, came forward to preach.

A simple handyman, who was attracted to Bible reading and took into consideration the variety of interpretations in the Anglican Church with respect to the faith. By not receiving answers to his questions, he arrived on his own at the complete rejection of the Holy Tradition, teachers of faith, theologians, official denominations and a creed of faith. Going further, he came to the following conclusion: (1) The true interpreter of the Holy Scripture is the Holy Ghost, Who was absent in all different Christian denominations, and therefore they all do not have real Christianity. (2) Only he, G. Fox, had the real revelation from the Holy Ghost. (3) True Christianity consists not in the dogmas and theological systems, but that the Holy Ghost directly reveals to men and directs them into perfection. At the same time, Quakers put personal direct "enlightening" ahead of the Holy Scripture and Holy Scripture in itself, is interpreted as being a prompter for their personal "enlightenment". With this type of approach to the Holy Scripture, misinterpretation and misuse is inevitable.

Consequently, the Quakers rejected hierarchy and have no apostolic succession; also were rejected the Sacraments including Baptism and Communion. At their meetings, after reading Holy Scripture, they designate a so called, "constructive silence," that is, silence and concentration while each is waiting for the infusion of the Holy Ghost. If anyone feels "enlightened" by the Holy Ghost, regardless of social standing, — he/she starts to teach and prophesy. The congregation takes those words as revelation from above which they have to use as a guide in faith and life.

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