« הקודםהמשך »
and perhaps for the world, ac guilty of the same crime, and of having cording to our dark-sighted views of more than once taught such doctrine as happiness, had Arminius so remain was not only contrary to the passages of
Scripture quoted in the MARGIN, but at ed; and had Franciscus Junius, the variance with those which are given at enlightened professor at Leyden, large in the text of the Confession. lived to pursue his pacific career in
«• The Rev. J. Kuchlinus owned, that the theological chair, having only observation, and added, " that if there was
he could not deny the truth of this last such a luminary as Arminius, a perfect agreement in those principal quiescent, and in the vista of his points which were the very hinge of the view. Not that Arminius had been articles of the Confession, there needed to altogether at ease in Amsterdam. thing further was then said on this topic.”
be no apprehension about the rest.' NoHe had commented on the 9th Arminius, pp. 114, 115. chapter of St. Paul's Epistle to the
The nature of his heresy was Romans ; 'and having applied the however at length disclosed; for, argument of the Apostle merely to the doctrine of justification by faith, tion, being suddenly called forth to
on an adversary, at another convenhe gave such alarm to the Reformed, allege the points objected to, he that they accused him of pleasing stated, with much hesitation and at once the Lutherans, the Ana
some confusion, the sum of his obbaptists, and the Libertines, by his doctrine.
jections as follows:He was surprised at
666]. While Arminius was interpreting pleasing so many, and all but those the ninth chapter of the Epistle to the he desired to please. He replied, Romans, he had taught, that no one was
“ That with no less grief of mind had condemned except for sin, and that all he heard by report of the clandestine infants were for that reason excluded from slanders of some persons, and in what condemnation. manner he was traduced under the title «« 2. That he had likewise said, It is of a Heretic, a Libertine and Pelagian; scarcely possible to attribute too much that he had never given just cause to any to good works : we cannot say enough in person to have such a bad opinion of him; commendation of them, provided we abthat he had never SPOKEN ANY THING IN stain from ascribing to them any portion CONTRADICTION TO THE REFORMED CON- of merit. FESSION AND CATECHISM, but had at all ««3. And that he had avowed, The times taught what agreed with them, and angels are not immortal. had, on more occasions than one, given * Arminius answered each of these testimony to this fact in his sermons; that charges, thus : if any one would before that assembly “ In reference to the first objection, when openly accuse him, and should think it he was preaching on sin as the cause of possible to convict him of this crime, he condemnation, he did not by those words was prepared instantly to hear his reasons, exclude original sin; but Plancius had not and to enter into a defence of his own ina correctly understood the nature of the nocence.” Arminius, p. 113.
original stain, if under the name of sin he Again: “His conscience bore him testi- was desirous to have it excluded. mony, and he knew, from the communi- “2. So far was he from denying the cations of several persons, that his dis second assertion respecting good works, courses had been rendered useful, and that he chose rather to defend it as a cortheir delivery attended with profit. In rect saying.'--Plancius then asked, Is reference to those passages of Seripture justification therefore to be ascribed to which, it was asserted, he had expounded good works, provided no merit is attriin a sense contrary to that of the Confes- buted to them?' - Arminius replied, sion,-no person could convict him of that • Justification is not assigned to works, offence: he confessed, that the eighteenth but to faith.' In confirmation of this he verse of the seventh chapter of the Romans quoted Romans iv. 4, 5: Now to him was cited in the margin of the Confession that worketh is the reward not reckoned in a sense somewhat different. Yet, if it of grace, but of debt. But to him that was incumbent on every teacher of the worketh not, but believeth on him that Reformed Church to adhere thus strictly justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted to the terms of this Confession, and if, for righteousness.' when any one in quoting passages of Scrip- “ 3. With regard to the third matter of ture departed even a hair's breadth from which he was accused, he had never utthose terms, it was instantly construed tered such a sentiment about the angels in into an enormous offence, it would not public, but had, he confessed, once menbe a matter of difficulty for him to prove tioned it privately in the house of Plancius, the greater part of his fellow-labourers and had established it by solid arguments, -- but with this addition, that he still considering matters which relate thought immortality to be an attribute to the point of regeneration, and properly belonging to God alone, which was manifest from Paul's testimony earnestly long to discharge my (1 Tim. vi. 16), “The blessed and only thoughts into your bosom. But Potentate, the King of kings and Lord of above all, I beg you to admonish lords; who only hath immortality, dwelling me when you judge that I depart in the light to which no man can approach, too far from the common doctrine &c. Angels are indeed happy spirits, and are now and will ever be immortal, not of our people, not so much in the by their own nature, but by the external exposition of some Scripture texts, sustentation of God which preserves them: much in the same way human bodies had faith. I shall not be in haste to lay
as in things relating to articles of been mortal before the fall, and capable of dissolution ; yet they would never have my papers before others, till I know been called to endure death, unless sin had how agreeable they may be to intervened.” Arminius, pp. 117, 118. them*. The caution you have in
We have gone back to these cire stilled into me, I carry always cumstances, in order, without ad- about me: for my heart is extremely verting either to the truth or fallacy set upon promoting the peace of of the opinions of Arminius, to con- the church, through God's grace ; firm our position, that no direct but neither am I less indefatigable charge was substantially and logi- in searching into, and establishing cally laid against him for departure truth. No day goes over my head, from the avowed formularies of his nay, (without vanity be it spoken, church; and that his own constant for you know me,) no hour, without appeal was to his faithful and con- ruminating on the matters in which scientious adherence to them--name. I am employed, and I esteem every ly, to the Belgic Confession and the thing harsh and unpleasant in comHeidelberg Catechism in the very parison with the sweetness of this sense,” he says, “ in which they are work. I look upon all the time, severally explained by nearly all which I do not bestow upon this the Reformed churches ;" “ feeling labour as lost. God grant (well may no doubt or scruple about any thing, I say so,) that I do not overdo it! except the interpretation of the six. For one must keep a mean eden in teenth Article of the Belgic Con- this, to the end that other duties of fession, to the words of which he religion be not interrupted, which was nevertheless willing to adhere.” are of far greater importance." Such were his voluntary declara. Eccles. p. 122, quoted by Brandt. tions, at the end of the conference To the great grief of all men, and above alluded to, and which left him to the ill-starred honour of Armiin general freedom from any public nius, in 1602 died prematurely the embarrassment till the end of the learned and pious, the moderately sixteenth century. About that time Calvinistic, and eminently pacific we find him called upon by the Franciscus Junius, the colleague of Synod of Haarlem to reply to the Gomarus, the renowned Calvinistic growing errors of the Anabaptists : champion, in the theological chair on which occasion, he suspected in- of the university of Leyden. Ardeed that the task was given him to minius was chosen to succeed him, draw out his opinions respecting through the intrigues (says the predestination, which he had avowed Historical Preface we have before himself not to teach " after the quoted, as translated by Mr. Scott) Geneva system.” But he writes to his beloved and bosom friend Uiten- love of novelty, for novelty's sake, so
. Here is certainly nothing like that bogardt, that such an intention on continually charged upon Arminius by their part should be defeated by the those who deemed all to be orthodox course he would take. " And now,” which was commonly received in the Re
We do not observe he says in this letter, quoted by that this letter, though very characBrandt, “ I am wholly taken up in teristic, is quoted by Mr. Nichols.
of Uitenbogardt, the bosom friend these great men tried by various means of Arminius, with the curators or
to prevail with the discreet and wise
senate of that city, and with the pressenate of the university; and, it is bytery of ministers and elders, and to inadded, in express contradiction to cite them to a compliance with the public the whole body of the Amsterdam wishes. It was at length with the utmost church, of which he was pastor, difficulty obtained, after great assiduity, “ because the more prudent thought, the most illustrious prince himself, that that a disposition so greatly luxu- Arminius should have leave to depart, riant and prone to innovation, and to perform the important services would be statedly employed with which this university demanded from a more evident danger in an univer- professor of divinity.” Arminius, pp.
32, 33. sîty at which youth, &c., than in These panegyric allegations of any particular church, &c., under Bertius derive some colour, it must the vigilance and authority of the be confessed, from a private letter of Presbytery." Thus did the disin. Arminius himself to Uitenbogardt, terested flock of Amsterdam reason in which, as usual, he opens his inwith respect to their beloved, their most soul. This letter is decisive, chosen, and their own early and not on this particular point only, educated pastor, who was also said but in general as to the truly ami. to be very ambitious of the honour able, affectionate, and conscien. proposed. But, ex altera parte, pro- tious cast of the mind of Arminius ; ceeds Bertius the panegyrist of Ar- and simply on this latter account, minius,
and for the benefit of our clerical “When those celebrated and distin. readers, we shall throw a brief quoguished individuals, Doctor Junius, and tation from it into a note, and proLuke Trelcatius, sen. died, this univer
ceed with our detail*. The circumsity, deprived of two of its professors, required a Hercules that was capable of bearing on his shoulders this world in mi. * “1 yield at once to your supposition, niature ; the burden of which was in the that I shall not be totally unfit for promean time sustained solely by that Atlas moting theological studies, if I be diligent and reverend person, Doctor Francis Go. and studious, and devote my entire marus, who, by the lamented decease of powers to this matter. But, in oppohis colleagues, was destitute of all colla- sition to it, many things rise up, and perteral support. In this state of affairs, by suade me neither to desert the function the unanimous voice of all men, and at in which I now am, nor to change it for the general request of his country, re- the other.— The first is, the extreme love course was had to Arminins; from whose and regard of the church towards me; mind nothing was further removed than and truly I consider it most equitable to the thoughts of such an application; and remunerate her for these by a mutual love, who had then, for fifteen years, had the and, if I may be permitted so to speak, i charge of the church of Christ in Amster- attempt this with all my powers. On dam. But when the inhabitants of that this account, therefore, it will be with the city declared, that they could not dis- greatest difficulty that this church and I perse with his assistance, because they can part from each other. You know esteemed him the chief and most success- likewise the amazing difference between ful opposer of those monstrous heresies the intense affection which sheep evince which had sprung up in that part of the towards their shepherd who is always country, no one can express the uncom- with them, and that temporary affection mon consternation among all good men which even the most virtuous of students which this intelligence created. Various manifest towards a man who is their inwere the public deliberations at this junc- structor only for a few years.-Another ture: and nothing that could be done, consideration is, the edification of my was left unattempted. The most noble own conscience, to the cultivation of Dousa and D. Neostadius, two of the cu- which, (I may declare to you without rators of our university, with that most blushing, I should not have paid such honourable man Nicholas Zeystius, the great attention, had not God admitted me syndic of our city, proceeded in the pub- into this holy function. I have had abunlic name to Amsterdam. To this com- dant experience to prove, that the permission were also appointed at the same sonal sanctification of a man set apart to time, by the most illustrious the Prince the sacred office, is vastly promoted by of Orange, John Uitenbogardt, minister the discharge of his hallowing duties. of the church at the Hague, and Nicholas Hypocrites alone, and they too of the Cromhoutius of the supreme court. All most infamous class, can perform the
CHRIST. OBSERV. No. 310. 4 K
stance of greatest weight in this Prosper Desidæus [Faustus Sowhole transaction is, that Franciscus cinus], but that he perceived, after Gomarus himself was the man who a comparison of the subject, they was appointed to examine Arminius were far different ” (p. 246); and as to his fitness for the office, and to further,' “ that, since Arminius disprobe him on the points on which avowed Pelagianism, he felt himself his orthodoxy was suspected : and satisfied ; and that his interprethis, ten years after Arminius's first tion. [of Romans vii-their first change with respect to the predesti controversy], such as it was, might narian tenets of Geneva, ten years be tolerated.” (p. 247.) after Gomarus and the whole This particular conference seems Dutch community had possessed to have been conducted in an exfull power for investigating opi- cellent spirit on both sides ; though nions which, in his ordinary minis- with firmness Arminius declined, trations, he never concealed. After at the instance of the academical the lapse of ten years from 1592, curators, who were present, to say when Arminius became, whatever any thing, “until Gomarus and is meant by the term, an Arminian, the other deputies of the churches did Gomarus in this year, 1602, ex- had absolved bim from the calumpress himself satisfied with his de- nies with which he had been asclarations in a public conference ac- sailed” (ibid.); and thus, observed tually held for the purpose ; “ inge- one of the curators, “ in how short nuously declaring that to that hour a space of time this wonderful conhe had always thought that Ar- troversy so frequently repeated, and minius maintained the opinions of which," for several years past, has
excited such great commotions and duties of an office so sacred without [de- clamour, had been composed, for riving from it the benefit of personal the termination of which the people sanctification. It is proper, I know, and of Amsterdam did not consider the order of things requires, that the private sanctification of such a person
many years to be sufficient.” ought to precede his separation to his
The entrance of Arminius on his public functions; and I own, that thrice new professorship opened, however, blessed are those who may be allowed, scenes of a very different descripon this account, to glory in the Lord. tion. The chair of theology found in But the reflection is consoling to me, that those also are blessed who are com
Gomarus and Arminius, seated side pelled, by the public discharge of their by side, elements of the most disholy duties, seriously to think upon their cordant description; and no wonder own private sanctification. Whatever may be the occasion and the cause of an
if an explosion was the conseentrance into a Divinity Professorship, quence. The charge against Arneither of them can be equally powerful minius, with that want of candour and efficacious, in this respect" (with the which marks the Historical Preface exercise of the Christian ministry). I declare to you, that my too intense desire throughout, is, that, immediately on to investigate different subjects has de- entering the chair of theology, “ he prived me of much of that time which I defended, contrary to his own opi. might have devoted with more propriety, nion, the doctrine of the Reformed and, I am sure, with greater profit, to the churches, concerning the
satisfaction edifying and hallowing of my soul. What will become of me, when 1 shall have de- of Christ, justifying faith, justificadicated myself to that employment, which tion by faith, the perseverance of prefers far larger demands for the contem- believers, the certitude of salvation, plation and discussion of difficult topics !' The same question might be asked
the imperfection of man in this here, as in a former note, Where is the life, and the other beads of doctrine man here, of boldness and enterprise ; a which he afterwards contradicted, man indeed of a genius excitatimis
, but and which at this day are opposed ever pleased with some shew of novelty? by his disciples.”— With regard to Whatever may be thought of Arminianism, surely the Historical Prefacers should have
one of these important heads of given Jacob Harmens his due.
doctrine, namely, the perseverance of believers, it is a curious fact that by Arminius on the eleventh of July, the preface expressly contradicts Doctor of Divinity was publicly conferred
1603,—the day, on which the dignity of itself, by declaring that he held
on him, and immediately prior to the act that doctrine to his dying day, as of creation. At the close of the oration unanswerably laid down in Scrip
will be found a beautiful form of prayer ture. (p. 40.) And with respect to
and thanksgiving which Arminius ad
dressed to God, after receiving at the the others, especially that of pre- hands of Dr. Francis Gomarus the requidestination, there seems little rea- site literary honours. He also briefly reson on any hand to doubt, that his turned thanks to Gomarus and the va
rious orders of spectators, who were ex. general object was to discard me
ceedingly numerous on that interesting taphysics and scholastic divinity, occasion, not only on account of the just from his incompetency, says Dr. celebrity of the professor elect, but beTwisse, to engage in them. But cause his was the first Doctor's degree what, on the other, says his bio- which had been granted by the new
Dutch University.” Arminius, p. 338. grapher ?
This oration was followed at the “Scarcely had he entered the univer- close of the same year, by three sity, when he discovered that the divinity students involved themselves in the in- others, on the Object, the Author tricacies of disputations and controversies, and the End, and the Certainty of and that they had become the sectaries Theology. We discover nothing of certain knotty theorems and difficult problems, to the neglect of the sacred in these orations but what may Scriptures. After conferring with his well comport with the renown of colleagues, he endeavoured to correct this the orator, and his profession of orevil, and succeeded in a great degree. thodoxy: though we must own ourFor he recalled that ancient, masculine, and hardy method of study; and, as far selves, by no means charmed with as possible, he withdrew these erratic the still remaining scholasticism obcandidates for hoiy orders from their servable throughout, in these comwanderings, and brought them back to positions. We shall give a single the fountains of salvation,-those pure fountains whose pellucid streams
quotation from the second, which fuse to flow in muddy channels. His we select chiefly as exhibiting the object in this, was, that the search for constant usage of the professor in religion might be commenced in the designating the persons of the FaScriptures ;-not that religion which is contained in altercation and naked spe.
ther and the Son by the distinctive culations, and is only calculated to feed appellations of God and Christ. their understandings;- but that religion “ The end of Evangelical Theology is which breathes forth charity, which fol. (1) God and Christ, (2) the union of lows after the truth that is according to man with both of them, and (3) the godliness, by which young men learn to sight and fruition of both, to the glory of Hee youthful lusts,' and by which, after both Christ and God. On each of these they have completely overcome the al- particulars we have some remarks to lurements of the flesh, they are taught make from the Scriptures, and which to avoid the pollutions that are in the most appropriately agree with, and are world,' and to do and suffer those things peculiar to, the evangelical doctrine. which distinguish a Christian from a hea- “ But before we enter upon these rethen. He repeatedly inculcated on their marks, we must shew that the salvation minds that doctrine which our Saviour of man, to the glory of Christ himself, has expressed in these words : · Except consists also in the love, the sight, and your righteousness shall exceed the righ- the fruition of Christ. There is a passage teousness of the Scribes and Pharisees, in the fifteenth chapter of the First Epiye shall in no case enter into the kingrlom stle of the Apostle Paul to the Corinof heaven.'” Arminius, p. 37.
thians, which imposes this necessity upon The first recorded act of Armi- us, because it appears to exclude Christ nius, on occasion of his new dignity, from this consideration. For in that place
the Apostle says, "When Christ shall we find, was the delivering of an
have delivered up the kingdom to God, oration, which stands the fourth
even the Father, then the Son also himout of five given in this volume by self shall be subject unto him, that God Mr. Nichols. It is on the priest- may be all in all.” (1 Cor. xv. 24.) From hood of Christ. Mr. Nichols says which must be removed by an appro
passage three difficulties are raised, of it,
priate explanation. They are these :“ This charming oration was delivered (1) • If Christ “shall deliver up the king