Burger, Martin (17th century)

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Martin Burger, a Swiss Mennonite, born "auf der Burg," in 1643 joined the Mennonite congregation in Rynach, canton of Bern. He was seized on 2 March 1646 and cross-examined on 6 January 1648, in which he made detailed statements about his confession of faith. He says that he left the state church because its doctrine and life did not agree; therefore he united with the Anabaptists because he heard that they were a peaceful and upright people; he had also found that they gave alms, loved one another, did not swear, and were not unchaste. Therefore he wanted to stay with them. Concerning infant baptism he says he does not believe that it harms the children, but whether it is beneficial he will leave to God. The Bible says, "He who believes and is baptized"; faith must precede baptism. But a child knowing nothing about faith can neither consent nor refuse. The government is instituted by God to punish the evil and protect the good, and a Christian can be a member of the government if he conducts himself according to God’s will. Of warfare he replies that Christ has proclaimed peace and commanded prayer for the enemy.

Concerning the oath he states that it is said at a certain place that the oath settles a thing. But he remains with yea, yea and nay, nay. Again on 13 January 1648 he and Hans Stentz were asked whether they will change their minds. Then Martin Burger declared that he would stick to that which God has given him to understand, let it cost what it would. Thereupon both were placed in the penitentiary at Zürich, but soon escaped. Nothing more is known of Martin Burger.


Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. I, 302.

Müller, Ernst. Geschichte der Bernischen Täufer. Frauenfeld: Huber, 1895. Reprinted Nieuwkoop : B. de Graaf, 1972: 107-115.

Author(s) Christian Neff
Date Published 1953

Cite This Article

MLA style

Neff, Christian. "Burger, Martin (17th century)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1953. Web. 20 Feb 2020. https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Burger,_Martin_(17th_century)&oldid=144034.

APA style

Neff, Christian. (1953). Burger, Martin (17th century). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 20 February 2020, from https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Burger,_Martin_(17th_century)&oldid=144034.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 1, p. 472. All rights reserved.

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