Like many other Believers Church denominations, Brethren have chosen to identify baptism as an ordinance, rather than use the language of sacrament.
While baptism is only one of the ordinances practised by the Brethren, for most of Brethren history it has been the most significant in defining the Brethren movement.
After the initial baptisms in the Eder River in the fall of 1708, the first Brethren leader, Alexander Mack, began a concerted campaign to explain the importance of baptism for the Brethren.
Despite this strong position, Brethren in the 18th century appear to have allowed for cases in which a person could join the Brethren without rebaptism as long as he or she had already been baptized by immersion.
The Brethren of the Light gradually over centuries, and Brother Edward in a single night of torment, pay off their historical debts by their own efforts; though the context of their monasticism is Christian, their actual world view is a Pelagianism bound to linear time and moral proportionality.
Theo vouchsafes to Malcolm at his own cost the new beginning denied to the Bloodguard and the Brethren of Perpetual Light.
Durnbaugh, now retired and serving as archivist for Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, is the dean of historians on the Brethren. His teaching and research career at Juniata College, then Bethany Theological Seminary, and Elizabethtown College has immersed him in the history of the Brethren and related movements.
In America they were often known as Dunkers, but often called themselves Brethren. The Church of the Brethren is the largest of the bodies deriving from this original group.
Durnbaugh explains Brethren beginnings occurring at "the intersection of two distinct but related movements--radical Pietism and Anabaptism" (61).
In Titus Andronicus the plurals brothers and brethren each occur nine times.(3) But the distribution of the alternative forms is striking.
If we exclude Titus Andronicus, brethren occurs only ten times in all Shakespeare's plays, and one of these instances is in a scene of Henry VIII that is usually ascribed to Fletcher (V.iv.70).
'Literature on Line' reveals that Peele was not alone among the database's 'Elizabethan' playwrights in his liking for brethren. Munday was evidently keen on this plural, especially in his pageants and entertainments, where the older form has an obvious ceremonial function, since the speaker is addressing the 'Brethren of the Society of Drapers', and so on.