Primitive Christianity Revived, Again
*George Fox's Book of Miracles* disappeared mysteriously during the early days of Quakerism, even though George Fox had left funds in his will for its publication. The manuscript of Fox's journal was also edited heavily, to eliminate passages the second generation Friends found problematic. In face of growing opposition from the government and the public, and intensifying persecution, the leadership of the early Quaker movement sought to eliminate extremism and indecorous behavior in meetings and on the street. In so doing, they suppressed the charismatic character of original Quakerism.
Michele Lise Tartar gives an interesting account of this period in a lecture she gave at Haddonfiled Meeting (NJ): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LbCs9sMwNiU Her lecture may have a "New Age" and feminist flavor, but it is still well done.
Henry Cadbury discovered Fox's Book of Miracles in his research on George Fox, but the actual book was nowhere to be found. Cadbury drew on Fox's extensive writings, and probably those of others, to reconstruct a version of the Book of Miracles. It is now in print.
This came to mind as I reflected on Hye Sung Francis's third installment of his essay on "Quakerism as a Charismatic Tradition." https://hyesungfrancis.wordpress.com/2015/09/04/quakerism-as-a-char... The title of the third part of his essay is "Quakerism as a Charismatic Tradition: A Prophetic Church"
Bill -- I'm not sure about the edition, but Quakers Uniting in Publications published this several years ago, I think with Cadbury's introduction.
William F Rushby said:
What got published was a reconstructed summary; the book itself (if you listen to the talk) was lost; and much of the material that hadn't been discarded was heavily inked over.
The trouble is, we still haven't been ready for the healing charisma, the realization of God's presence and effective mercy, that produced the healings attributed to George Fox, Naylor, and to Jesus before them.
Jesus accepted his personal defeat, because the people of his time were overall not ready to live under The Kingdom, while a violent victory over his enemies would have negated God's purposes.
I think that Fox eventually realized, reluctantly, the same thing about the people of his own time -- which accounts for a large part of his hostility towards Naylor, who was willing to accept a martyrdom for himself which Fox could not accept coming as heavily on their followers as he anticipated.
But now, I think, we're faced with an odd combination of circumstances: more oppression and violence than ever before, with more widespread awareness of its needlessness and futility than ever before --
with the 'destroyers of the Earth' turning out to be just plain folks like us, all around us and even including us -- destroying everything God made for us by merely living the kinds of lives we consider normal.
It seems like either The Kingdom arrives 'in power' very soon, or life as we know it will become untenable. That may have something to do with these 'impossible' and 'unacceptable' divine interventions once more coming to light?