The 's Search For Religious Freedom

920 Words4 Pages
When Robert Matthews, self proclaimed Matthias, Prophet of the God of the Jews, came forth as a zealot promising prosperity and salvation in a time of great social turmoil and upheaval, people latched on to his assurances that they would be leaving behind economic oppression and impoverishment. During this time period between 1820 and 1840, people were so caught up in the urgency of religious zeal that they were desperate for a way to get out. Some historians believe Matthias and his influential, albeit debatably derailed, followers like Elijah Pierson seemed like prime examples of their time. Rather, their newfound religious faction undeniably regressed back to extreme old world practices, like those that occurred during the American Revolution, after Matthias fails to make it in the new world urban economy. Matthias’s search for religious freedom was wrapped up in patriarchal roles and avoidance of modern innovations in living and ideas, pointing his regressions back to the practices of the colonial period. Essentially, Matthias targeted the Market Revolution as the source of his downfall. The notable ideas of the Market Revolution included individual ambition, risk taking, and accumulating money, something that Matthias’s cohort Pierson seemed to embrace and excel at. Matthias on the other hand was burned as the result of this revolution, and thenceforce, “In the Kingdom of Matthias there would be no market, no money, no buying or selling, no wage system with its
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