Page:Balthasar Hübmaier.djvu/152

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Balthasar Hübmaier

Hübmaier's opinions and connections. It has not always been correctly interpreted; it is reading the author's subsequent history into the articles to see in them doctrine "entirely in the direction of the Anabaptists."[1] The principle that the Scripture is to be the arbiter of all questions, the sole rule of faith and practice, did, indeed, become later the fundamental contention of the Anabaptist party; but it was at this time also the fundamental avowal of the Swiss reformers, and had been such from the first. It was upon this basis that the first Zürich disputation was conducted, and in all their writings Zwingli and Œcolampadius had been setting it forth as the corner-stone of their reformation. Luther, too, up to this time had been advocating the same principle with all the vigour of his voice and pen. It had not yet been shown that the reformers would be unwilling to follow this principle to all lengths. It was their ultimate refusal to do this, their partial surrender again to the tradition they had so vigorously repudiated, that led to the division of the reforming party and developed the minority radical group, to whom the name "Anabaptist" was gener-

  1. Hoschek, i., 146.