- George Blaurock
Jörg vom Haus Jacob (Georg Cajacob, or George of the House of Jacob), commonly known as George Blaurock [The nickname "Blaurock" means "blue coat". He was also nicknamed "derstarkeJörg" meaning "Strong George".] (c. 1491 –
September 6 1529), with Conrad Grebeland Felix Manz, was co-founder of the Swiss Brethrenin Zürich, and thereby one of the founders of Anabaptism.
George Blaurock was born in 1491 in Bonaduz in the Grisons,
Switzerland. He was educated at the University of Leipzig and served as a priest of the Roman CatholicChurch until his conversion to evangelical Anabaptism. Blaurock had evidently departed from the Catholic church before he arrived in Zürich circa 1524, for he had already taken a wife. Though he came to see Huldrych Zwingli, he soon became attached to the more radical followers of Zwingli. These "radicals" insisted on following only that which had Biblical support. They rejected the mass, images, and infant baptism. The city council condemned their position, ordered them to desist from their meetings, and ordered all unbaptized babies to be baptized within eight days. On January 21, 1525, the despondent group held a secret meeting at the home of Felix Manz. These believers went to their knees in prayer for guidance. Arising from the prayer, George Blaurock requested Conrad Grebel to baptize him upon a confession of faith in Christ. Grebel did so, and afterwards Blaurock proceeded to baptize the others who were present.
George Blaurock worked closely with Felix Manz until Manz was martyred in Zürich on
January 5, 1527. On that same day, Blaurock was severely beaten and permanently expelled from Zürich. He kept moving, laboring at Bern, Biel, the Grisons, and Appenzell. After his arrest and 4th banishment in April of 1527, Blaurock left Switzerland never to return.
From here he turned to the
Tyrol. In 1529 he became the pastor of the church in Adige Valley, after their former pastor, Michael Kürschner, was burned at the stake. Blaurock conducted a very successful ministry in Tyrol. Many believers were baptized and churches founded. In August he and Hans Langegger were arrested by Innsbruck authorities. While in captivity they were tortured for information. On September 6, 1529, Blaurock and Langegger were burned at the stake near Klausen.
The only writings left by Blaurock were a letter and two hymns written during his last three weeks of life. The hymns are entitled "Gott Führt Ein Recht Gericht" (God Holds a Righteous Judgment) and "Gott, dich will ich loben" (God, You I Will Praise). Both hymns are preserved in the
Ausbund, an old Anabaptist hymnal still used by the Amish.
:"Gott, dich will ich loben":1. Lord God, how do I praise Thee:From hence and evermore,:That Thou real faith didst give me:By which I Thee may know.:6. Forget me not, O Father,:Be near me evermore;:Thy Spirit shield and teach me,:That in afflictions great:Thy comfort I may ever prove,:And valiantly may obtain:The victory in this fight.
*"The Anabaptist Story", by William Roscoe Estep ISBN 0-8028-1594-4
* [http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/B55760.html Blaurock, Georg (ca. 1492-1529)] in "Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online"
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