Part Two: A Historical Analysis of the “New Jerusalem” Claim

I’ve previously explained how foolish it is to follow Apollo Quiboloy or believe his claims. The Bible, of course, is my ultimate source of authority for this.

There are other sources of information that can shed additional light. Quiboloy is actually not the first person to claim he’s found the “New Jerusalem.” Let’s take a quick look at Christian history*:

Martin Luther (1483–1546) is generally credited with starting the Protestant Reformation. Some religious leaders believed that Luther’s reforms actually did not go far enough. This led to the Radical Reformation—a movement which attempted to discard all non-biblical religious traditions and start over with the Scriptures. Many of these groups were also called Anabaptists, referring to their practice of believer’s baptism by immersion. Ironically, the Radical Reformers/Anabaptists were harshly persecuted by both Protestants and Catholics.

A few of the Radical Reformers developed very strange beliefs and practices. A prime example was the Radical Kingdom Builders. This group decided to bring “Christ’s kingdom” to earth by military/political force.

The Radical Kingdom Builders and the “New Jerusalem’s”:

Melchoir Hofmann became a prominent leader in the Radical Kingdom Builder movement. He moved to Strassburg (Germany) and declared that it would be the “new Jerusalem.” He also claimed that 1533 was the beginning of Christ’s 1,000 year reign on earth. Hoffman was eventually thrown in prison. He died in prison ten years later.

Hofmann had a disciple by the name of Jan Matthys who carried on his work. Matthys moved to Munster (also in Germany), a city where many fled to escape religious persecution. Matthys decided that Munster, not Stassburg, was the “new Jerusalem.” He and his followers seized the city, believing they were establishing God’s kingdom on earth. The Roman Catholic bishop sent troops to the city, and Matthys was killed as he battled to keep control of the city.

John of Leyden took over leadership after Matthys was killed. He gave Munster residents three choices: 1. be baptized 2. flee the city 3. be killed. He also introduced the practice of polygamy.

The war over Munster lasted for about a year, and the Radicals were eventually defeated. The captured leaders were tortured and killed. Their bones were publicly displayed for hundreds of years in order to discourage future uprisings.

These misguided leaders did great harm to all other Radical Reformers/Anabaptists. Many of the Anabaptists were actually pacifists who just wanted to worship and preach the Bible. Because of what happened in Munster, all of them were considered dangerous rebels. Tens of thousands were killed.

I’m not accusing Quiboloy of trying to overthrow the government. I’m simply trying to show that he’s not the first religious leader to make false claims about the “new Jerusalem” and the return of Christ’s kingdom. Such leaders do tremendous harm.

“Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it”
-George Santayana

“The only thing we learn from history is that we learn nothing from history.”
-Friedrich Hegel

*For further study, you may want to purchase Church History for Church Leaders (volume 2) by D. Leslie Hill. I’m indebted to him for an excellent, concise summary of the subject which I have discussed here.

See Also:
“Pastor” Apollo C. Quiboloy: False Prophet

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