Selected Reading

Quick Quotes

All life – including the variety we see in nature – is a parable of the future community of the kingdom of God. Just as the air surrounds us, or as a blowing wind engulfs us, we need to be immersed in the blowing Spirit, who unites and renews everything. And just as water washes and cleanses us every day, so in the symbol of baptism we witness to our purification from everything that is of death.

- Eberhard Arnold

The Christian was baptized into Christ, the Crucified, in such a way that the water of baptism could be compared with the blood of Christ; he had made his own the conflict and victory of the cross against all the demonic powers of the world epoch, and lived from now on in the power and future of the Risen One. He who had broken with all things as they are, had to live and die for the cause to which he had pledged himself in this dedication unto death. With a company of warriors faithful unto death the message broke in upon the old world.

- Eberhard Arnold

In the Church of the Spirit the believer’s heart is made pure and free from every deadly sin of selfish life, by community with the death of Christ. His heart is directed in righteousness towards God and His uniting kingdom. His body knows that he has been cleansed from deathly lusts in the baptism of faith. He stands in the unity of God’s life, in the certainty of God’s promise and assurance of perpetual life.

- Eberhard Arnold

Additional Reading for Baptism

Love Letters
These inspiring letters interweave a profound love for Jesus Christ with a deep love between two young people, as well as an utterly transparent search to do God’s will.
Against the Wind
A German journalist's account of the life of Eberhard Arnold, who rejected mainstream Christianity for a radical discipleship of living in community as did the early church.
A Joyful Pilgrimage
Emmy Arnold’s memoir radiates joy, an enthusiasm for life, and an unflagging optimism grounded in faith. She tells the story of how she and her husband, Eberhard, came to discard all the trappings of middle-class life in 1920s German to found the Bruderhof, a Christian community based on Acts 2 and 4.
Poems and Rhymed Prayers
Poems and prayers that open a window on one man’s inmost thoughts, and show him at his most essential and Christ-centered. Each one can be a centering point for meditation and contemplation.
The Early Christians
What did Christianity look like before it became an institution? This collection of firsthand accounts of the early church includes excerpts from Origen, Tertullian, Polycarp, Clement of Alexandria, Justin, Irenaeus, and others — and equally revealing material from their critics, detractors and persecutors.