Written in 1660, these prophetic words bring the warning of Satanic subtlety which, according to these writers, was more deadly than the martyrdom of believers.
“Of the Greater Danger there is at this time, than in the Bloody and Distressing times of the Martyrs
These are sad times, in which we live; nay, truly, there is more danger now than in the time of our fathers, who suffered death for the testimony of the Lord. Few will believe this, because the great majority look to that which is external and corporeal, and in this respect it is now better, quieter, and more comfortable; few only look to that which is internal and pertains to the soul, and on which everything depends, ‘for what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? (Matthew 16:26)
These times are certainly more dangerous; for then Satan came openly, through his servants, even at noon-day, as a roaring lion, so that he could be known, and it now and then was possible to hide from him; besides, his chief design then was to destroy the body: but now he comes as in the night, or in the twilight, in a strange but yet pleasing form, and, in a two-fold way, lies in wait to destroy the soul; partly, to trample under foot, and annihilate entirely, if this were possible, the only saving Christian faith; partly to destroy the true separated Christian life which is the outgrowth of faith.”
Page 16; Martyrs Mirror
It is interesting that these people, who wrote of believers being burned at the stake, feel the subtle teaching that removes one from a separated life is the more dangerous work of the evil one than torture and death. Seems as though we might be missing something in our Baptist churches today.