Friday, July 26, 2013

Hammer of the Huguenots excerpt and lots of Bonds in France pictures

An early draft of some paragraphs about Anduze, La Petite Gevéve:

“In the last five years God has done a marvelous work in France,” he began. “There is scarcely a region in France where our Lord has not raised up a church, such as this one, proclaiming the light and freedom of the gospel of grace in our Savior Jesus Christ. To be sure, the enemies of the gospel gnash their teeth and rage against Christ’s church, and cruel persecutions abound. Yet we know, ‘The church never triumphs except under the cross.’ One of those latest triumphs has come in the Cevennes, in the silk-making village of Anduze. There has been a church on the run, meeting in hiding, in caves, in barns, on lonely hillsides, for many years. For example as some of you know, in 1547 a friar—now a free follower of Christ, no longer enslaved to the pretended Vicar of Christ, so called—, I say, this friar boldly entered the Roman church building of Anduze and preached the gospel of free grace. Convicted of sin by the Spirit of grace, hundreds of the citizens repented of their sins and professed their faith in Christ Jesus alone, including the magistrate Monsieur Airebaudouze and his family. One of his sons, a former archdeacon in the cathedral at Nimes, forfeited his living and fled to Geneva to prepare for the ministry under Jean Calvin, after which he returned as pastor to his hometown of Anduze. Pastor Airebaudouze was so beloved for his passionate preaching of the gospel and his faithful shepherding of the flock, the congregation began calling him ‘Monsieurd’Anduze.’

“We rejoice with our brethren there: thousands have rested their faith in Christ Jesus alone—post tenebres, Lux! And only three families in all of Anduze staunchly remained under the darkness and superstitions of papacy. Moreover, June 20, 1560, the Reformed church of Anduze, knowing full well what it might cost them—openly declared itself to be the true and faithful church of Jesus Christ in that city. Now it is called by many, ‘La petite Geneve.’” He paused, his smile diminishing. “The people of Anduze are at present engaged in building up the walled fortification of the city. The enemies of the cross will not long be silent.”

His smile returned. “Donc, much the same triumphal story may be told of many places in the south of France, in Normandee, and in the cities of Poitiers, Angers, LoudunMeaux—and many, many others. We are informed that God by his grace has raised up more than 1,200 churches proclaiming the pure doctrine of the gospel throughout France, all are growing, many are already large congregations—far too large for hiding in caves and barns. It is alone God’s doing. Now then, with grateful hearts, we must earnestly pray for the progress of our beleaguered church.”

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