“A Personal Testimony Concerning the Contemporary Society of Friends by Wayne J Sturgeon (Ex-Quaker)”
“I was born-again at age 19 and have been a Christian for ten years. For most of that time I was actively involved in the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers), both as an 'attender' and, until very recently, as a 'member'.
I resigned my membership in protest at the progressive apostasy of the contemporary Society of Friends from the most basic fundamentals of the Christian faith. That is, such matters as the full humanity and divinity of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, His life, atoning death, resurrection, His return in glory, etc.
In my time and experience within the Society I have known meetings that actually discourage Christian vocal ministry and testimony, reading from the Bible, or any form of evangelism. I have met many, many 'Friends', both old and young, who appear to implicitly reject Christianity, whilst they remain in an organisation that claims to be Christian.
At the Meeting I have now left, I asked the elders if we could hold a simple prayer meeting in one of the rooms of the Meeting (Note: 'meeting' in this context means the place where Quakers meet). It seemed to me to be a reasonable request for a Christian to want a prayer meeting in a 'Christian' Society.
It took weeks, and then months, for my request to be discussed. In the meantime, one elder tried to 'fob me off', advising me to think about hiring a room in a nearby community centre, rather than holding the meeting at the Meeting House! Eventually, I was told that the matter had to be put to the 'Monthly Meeting', as the local Meeting did not have the authority or discernment to decide whether or not to allow me to hold the prayer meeting. The reason was that if I called it a 'Christian' prayer meeting, I might alienate many members, who would then not attend!
Subsequently, I was not permitted to hold a 'Christian' prayer meeting in a supposedly Christian Meeting House. Yet, an elder at the Monthly Meeting admitted that my own local Meeting had acted improperly and that there was no issue to face.
I wrote many letters and made 'phone calls to various people in my own Meeting. I even wrote a theological article concerning Quakerism and Christianity, typed by a friend, so that I could hand it out to other Quakers. I hoped that this would open up discussion on the subject. But, my efforts were in vain. I was told pointedly that I was 'judgmental', 'dogmatic' and 'intolerant' of other people's beliefs and feelings, and that I was trying to be 'more of a Quaker than the rest'. One woman friend said of me, "I don't know why he comes here!" Another said, "The resurrection isn't true because I've studied it and read a book on it." etc., etc.
All of this caused me much grief, personal pain and distress. In the light of scripture and experience, I finally decided to resign my membership - which, by God's grace, I have now done. Since that moment, I have become convicted and aware of the fact that my walk with the Lord had been seriously compromised, in my relationships and beliefs, by my membership of the Quakers. I needed to repent of my many failings and errors and to seek fellowship elsewhere. I had to find a church where the scriptures were preached, obeyed and followed. I am now enlightened concerning five facts of Quakerism that flout fundamentals of apostolic Christianity. Each one totally undermines conservative, orthodox Biblical belief. For this reason, I further believe that such facts and erroneous beliefs are inspired by a satanic spirit.
Unitarianism. By far the majority of Friends implicitly reject the Trinity and hold to a belief in a Godhead more akin to Unitarianism, which, theologically, always rejects the divinity of Christ. (Editor: Unitarianism is a branch of humanism).
Theological Liberalism. Anyone who is even mildly acquainted with the Society of Friends cannot fail to miss how 'wishy washy' and watered-down is the Quaker-version of 'Christianity', in which all and any beliefs, heretical or not, can flourish.
Spiritual Humanism. It might shock many Quakers to learn that there are now as many 'religious atheists' as there are 'Christians' in Quakerism, even though the Society claims to be Christian.
Religious Pluralism. The overwhelming majority of Friends are best described as 'universalists' in their innermost convictions. That is, the belief that all religions and faiths are equally true and all of them lead to God. One local minister said of Quakers, "You can find anything and everything in a Quaker Meeting except the one thing - Jesus Christ."
Philosophical Theosophy. The early Quakers did not, in fact, ever use the term 'inner light'. Early Quakers used the term 'inward light', which had a more spiritual significance. The term 'inner light' has more in common with the esoteric, gnostic and occultist teachings of theosophy and philosophy, than with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
In my view, then, I can only conclude that the contemporary Society of Friends is NOT a Christian body. I would urge anyone who is now a part of the Society, and who is a confessing Christian, to come out from it straight away, rather than subscribe to its heretical beliefs. For, as scripture says (2 Corinthians 6:14-16a):
"Be ye not unequally yolked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship has righteousness with unrighteousness?
and what communion hath light with darkness?
And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?
And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols?"
I would further give testimony that there is indeed only one mediator between Man and God - Christ Jesus. The 'light' that Quakers claim to have is only darkness (Matthew 6:23).”
Wayne Sturgeon, repentant sinner, February 1997
(Editor: The above conclusions are similar to those reached concerning charismaticism. Also see Outline O-027, 'Quakers - Are They Christian?').
© February 1997
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