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5 Beliefs That Set Quakers Apart From Other Protestant Christians

By    |   Wednesday, 01 Apr 2015 03:50 PM

Of all of the Protestant Christian denominations, that of Quakers is probably set apart the most. "Friends," as they call themselves, believe in the Trinity of the father, the son, and the Holy Spirit like other Christians, but the roles that each person plays varies widely among Quakers.

Below are five beliefs that set Quakers apart from other Protestant Christians:

1. Meetings: Quaker meetings, or a meeting of friends, may differ considerably, based on whether the individual group is liberal or conservative. Because of this there are basically two types of Quaker meetings. Meetings of medication are mostly silent, with expectant waiting for an answer of some sort from the Holy Spirit.

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Individuals may speak in these meetings if they feel led to do so. Pastoral meetings can be much like an evangelical Protestant worship service, with prayer, readings from the Bible, hymns, music, and a sermon. Some branches of Quakerism have pastors, others do not.

2. Personal Communication:
In order to communicate with each other and with God, Quakers often sit in a circle or square. This allows people to see and be aware of each other, but no single person is raised in status above the others. Some Friends describe their faith as an "Alternative Christianity," which relies heavily on personal communion and revelation from God rather than adherence to a creed and doctrinal beliefs. Early Quakers called their buildings steeple-houses or meeting houses, not churches.

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3. Continuing Revelation: Most Friends believe in the religious belief that truth is continuously revealed to individuals directly from God. Quakers are taught that Christ comes to teach the people himself. Friends often focus on trying to hear God. Because of this, Quakers reject the idea of priests, believing in the priesthood of all believers.

4. Equality: From its beginning, the Religious Society of Friends taught equality of all persons, including women. Some conservative meetings are divided over the issue of homosexuality.

5. Sacraments: Most Quakers believe that how a person lives their life is a sacrament, and that formal observances are not necessary. Quakers hold that baptism is an inward, not outward, act. And when it comes to communion, instead of the Lord’s Supper, Friends subscribe to the theory of spiritual communion with God, experienced during silent meditation.

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Of all of the Protestant Christian denominations, that of Quakers is probably set apart the most. Friends, as they call themselves, believe in the Trinity of the father, the son, and the Holy Spirit like other Christians, but the roles that each person plays varies widely among Quakers.
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2015-50-01
Wednesday, 01 Apr 2015 03:50 PM
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