Bilt, Johannes (16th/17th century)
Johannes Bilt (Biltius) was preacher of the Reformed Church at Workum in the Dutch province of Friesland. He was probably the student of Antonides van der Linden who was a violent opponent of the Mennonites, and fell into a doctrinal dispute with Rippert Eenkes, the preacher of the Mennonite church at Workum. The dispute grew so violent that the government intervened and on 20 May 1605 ordered them to carry it on in writing. Both sides were to present their arguments to each other on 24 June, and the replies were to be exchanged on 25 July. At the appointed time Bilt presented his arguments; but Rippert Eenkes did not present his until November 1606, and then not in Workum, but to the government in Leeuwarden. The magistrate of Workum therefore felt it necessary to send two delegates to Leeuwarden; one of them was Johannes Bilt. He had just published an answer to Eenkes' reply. The government granted them a half year to carry on their pen dispute. Long after the term had expired Bilt handed in a very detailed presentation of the entire controversy, containing 1,483 paragraphs. He apparently achieved his purpose. The government took an unfriendly attitude toward the Mennonites. In the following year (1608) the building of new Mennonite churches was prohibited.
Doopsgezinde Bijdragen (1873): 83, 90 ff.
Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe; Schneider, 1913-1967: v. I, 222.
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Waterloo, Ontario, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 1, p. 343. All rights reserved. For information on ordering the encyclopedia visit the Herald Press website.
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MLA style: Neff, Christian. "Bilt, Johannes (16th/17th century)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1953. Web. 19 May 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/B54052.html.
APA style: Neff, Christian. (1953). Bilt, Johannes (16th/17th century). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 19 May 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/B54052.html.