putting of his clothes vnto his shirte, went to the stake, being burnt with a yong man of. xx yeres of age, ioyfully and constātly together, whose name was Iohn Leaffe. Thus thys Bradford being in the fire, neuer stirred him selfe: but (holding vp his hands) quietly & paciently suffred the violēce therof, vntyl it had cōsumed him into ashes, in the sight of a great multitude, to the comforte of all Gods chyldren, and the glory of his mayster, whom hee before most constantly had confessed.[Back to Top]
During the time of his imprisonment, being almost. 2. yeres, he had many conflictes aswel with the Anabaptists, as the Papistes, against which he wrote diuers bokes. He comforted the afflicted, strengthened the weake, & cōuerted diuers to the truth, which wer drowned in errours. He wrote sundry comfortable treatises, & many godly letters, of which som he wrote to London, Cambridge, Walden, & Manchester, where he had most preached. By which letters, that it may appere how godly a prysoner he was, howe great a care he had of their estate, what a zeale he had to performe his office, euen to the putting of of hys tabernacle, and how well he warned them all whō he taught, they shall immediatelye follow.[Back to Top]
This letter was first printed in the 1563 edition, reprinted in Letters of the Martyrs, pp. 251-56 and then in subsequent editions of the Acts and Monuments. BL, Add. 19400, fos. 31r-32v is the original letter; ECL 262, fos. 156r-160r and 214v-217r are copies of it.
TO all that professe the gospel and true doctrine of our lord and sauiour Iesus christ in the City of London, Iohn Bradford, a most vnworthy seruaunt of the Lord, now not only in prison, but also excōmunicated & condemned to be burned for the same true doctrine, wisheth mercy, grace, & peace with encrease of all godly knowledge, & piety, from god the father of mercy, through the merites of our alone and omnisufficient redemer Iesus Christ, by the operation of the holy Spirit for euer. Amen.[Back to Top]
My dearely beloued brethren in our Sauiour Christe, although the time I haue to liue is very lytle (for hourely I loke when I shuld be had hence to be conueyed into Lankashyre, there to be burned, and to render my lyfe by the prouidence of God, where I first receyued it by the same prouidence):
This letter was written on 11 February 1555: Bradford actually had just under five months of life left to him.
This mi faith I would gladlye particularlye declare and expounde to the confyrmation & cōfort of the simple: but alas by starts and stelth I write in maner that, that I write, and therefore I shall desire you al to take thys breuitye in good part.First for my fayth, I do confesse and pray all the whole congregation of Christ to beare witnes with me of the same: that I do beleue constantlye through the gift and goodnes of God (for faith is gods only gift) all the. xii. articles of the Symbole or crede, commenly attributed to the collection of the apostels, not because of the crede it selfe, but because of the word of god the which teacheth and confirmeth euery article accordinglye.
Bradford is quoting article eight of the 42 Articles, the defining doctrinal statement of the Edwardian church.
Bradford is quoting article six of the 42 Articles, the defining doctrinal statement of the Edwardian church.
therfore the churche of Christ, nor none of his congregation ought to be burdened with any other doctrine, then which here out hath his foundation and ground. In testimonye of this faith I render and geue my lyfe, being condēned aswel for not acknowleging the Antichrist of Rome to be Christes vicar general, and supreme heade of hys catholicke and vniuersall churche here, or els where vpon earth: as for denieng the horrible and idolatrous doctrin of transsubstanciation, and Christes reall, corporal, and carnall presence in his super, vnder the formes and accidentes
In scholastic theology and philosophy, accidents are the physical attributes of an object, such as colour, taste, shape,etc., which do not comprise its physical essence ('substance'). The term is important in controversies over the eucharist.