Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. – Hebrews 13:8 (NIV)
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This awareness is amplified by George Fox in his 1661 declaration to King Charles II: “And this is our testimony to the whole world. The spirit of Christ, by which we are guided, is not changeable, so as once to command us from a thing as evil and again to move unto it; and we do certainly know, and do so testify to the world, that the spirit of Christ, which leads us into all Truth, will never move us to fight any war against any man with outward weapons, neither for the kingdom of Christ, nor for the kingdoms of this world.”
Our Quaker testimonies clearly rest upon an acknowledgement of one Truth – and one Inward Light beaming through each of us. What makes Friends’ comprehension of this Truth and Light unique is our recognition that each of us will possess a differing experience. Thus, because our individual experiences and perceptions of the Holy One vary, it is essential that we need to come together as a gathered body to test our understandings in the collective wisdom of our fellow “seekers after Truth,” and a sharing of the insights we have found. We cannot have a genuine Christianity without that.
If any person says the inward Spirit leads him or her to action contrary to Bible teaching, it is not from the Holy Spirit of Christ, for his Spirit does not change from one situation to the next.
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He is that true Light, who lighteth every Man that cometh into the World. And this is he whom the Father promised by the Mouth of his Prophet, saying, I will give thee for a Covenant of the People, for a Light of the Gentiles. (Elizabeth Bathurst, 1655?-1685)