"Quaker" was a derisive name. In 1650 Judge Bennett told George Fox that he knew that at the meetings of Fox and his followers people shook with emotion. So he told him, "you folk are the tremblers, you are the quakers." And the name stuck.
When dissent from the Church of England was made legal, Quakers called themselves the "Society of Friends". That is what they are called today, although in many parts of the world "Friends Church" is the name.
George Fox saw a need to proclaim Christ who liberates people from the power of sin in their lives and began preaching in the open air to thousands.
The early Quaker preachers sounded rather like the Old Testament prophet Amos: they proclaimed Christ as truth and let that truth stand in judgement over current evils. They wanted people to live by Christ’s righteousness, rather than to speculate about his second coming.
For years the gentle Quakers endured staunch persecution and even imprisonment, with some of their number even going to their deaths. The suffering of the Quakers raised an outcry against intolerance which helped pave the way for religious liberty.
[tags]BlogRodent, church-history, Church-of-England, ChurchRodent, history, Quakers[/tags]