The Reformation, Beards, and other rules

Here are some humorous (and not so humorous) excerpts from reformer Johann Eberlin’s Fifteen Confederates, a vision of a Protestant utopian land called “Wolfaria” (land of welfare). Methinks that Fundamentalist Bible colleges are the distant progeny of Eberlin.

Beards. All men are to wear long beards. Men with smooth faces like women shall be held an outrage. All men shall wear short, unkempt hair. [I call this the anti-BJU rule.:

Gaming. All gaming is to be conducted in public. Adults are permitted limited gambling. Youth, however, are forbidden to play cards or dice for money, although they may for brief periods play chess for eggs.

Houses and Buildings. Workers in the same trade are to live on the same street. Simplicity is to be the rule in all houses and buildings save public places such as the town hall, store, bathhouse, school, and inns, which are permitted decorations beyond the ordinary.

Children. All boys and girls are to attend a publicly supported school from ages three to eight. They are to be taught the Christian law from the gospel and Saint Paul, as well as Latin and German, and a little Greek and Hebrew. At age eight a decision shall be made by the community to send each child into a trade or further study.

Clergy. No priest may hold political office.