Page:Chertkov - Christian Martyrdom.djvu/15

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and hearts. It consists of psalms, partly formed out of the contents of the Old and New Testaments, partly composed independently.

The Spirit-Wrestlers found alike their mutual relations and their relations to other people—and not only to people, but to all living creatures—exclusively on love; and, therefore, they hold all people equal, brethren. They extend this idea of equality also to the Government authorities; obedience to whom they do not consider binding upon them in those cases when the demands of these authorities are in conflict with their conscience; while, in all that does not infringe what they regard as the will of God, they willingly fulfil the desire of the authorities.

They consider murder, violence, and in general all relations to living beings not based on love, as opposed to their conscience, and to the will of God. The Spirit-Wrestlers are industrious and abstemious in their lives, and always truthful in their speech, accounting all lying a great sin.

Such, in their most general character, are the beliefs for which the Spirit-Wrestlers have long endured cruel persecution.

The Emperor Alexander I., in one of his rescripts concerning the Spirit-Wrestlers, dated the