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repeating old grievances, rising up in the midst of the meeting, in an animated tone, he challenged all those to come forward, whosoever they might be, that might wish to communicate any' particulars in his sermons which they had deemed worthy of reprehension. When no one arose, some person made a solitary remark,_"that it might be rationally concluded from the testimony of the Lutherans, the Anabaptists, and persons of Libertine habits, (who boasted of his discourses on the ninth chapter of the Romans,) that he taught and defended something that was quite at variance with the doctrines which were delivered by his brethren in the ministry and by the Reformed pastors in general."-Arminius would not allow this to be a necessary consequence, and declared, “ that it appeared wonderful to him how persons of so many discordant opinions could unite together in applauding his discourses; but that no person who was of the same sacred order with him, and a member of that assembly, had at any time heard such things as were manifestly repugnant to the sacred volume or the received forms of consent.”—In reply to this, one of the elders said, « that it must indeed be confessed he had carefully guarded against declaring any thing openly that deserved to be an object of censure, yet he had indulged in ambiguous and equivocal modes of expression.”- After Arminius had declared his innocence of this charge, and had demanded some proof of the accusation thus preferred against him, that he might afterwards the more carefully avoid expressions of that kind, not a man was found among them to produce a single proof. · The next meeting of the ecclesiastical senate was held on the 27th of the same month, when Arminius, perceiving the minds of several persons still to be unappeased, two or three times invited the clandestine slanderers of his name to make their appearance, and commanded them openly to divulge those things which they had to allege against him. This challenge having been repeated, Kuchlinus immediately asked, “ Where is Plancius ?” and when he was found, Kuchlinus began to remind him, “ that he had occasionally in the absence of Arminius stated some doubts which he felt about his doctrine, and that he ought now to state them in his presence and hearing. That was the proper scene of action, and the object which claimed his present attention.” Being thus unexpectedly summoned, and having been also desired by Arminius to stand forward as his adversary, Plancius refused to assume that invidious character; yet he confessed, that he had observed some things in his sermons, which did not accord exactly enough with the sentiments entertained by the Re formed Church. The sum of his accusation reduced itself to these points :
1. “ While Arminius was interpreting the ninth chapter of the epistle to the Romans, he had taught, that no one was condemned except for sin, and that all infants were for that reason excluded from condemnation.
2. “ That he had likewise said, It is scarcely possible to attribute too much to good works: We cannot say enough in commendation of them, provided we abstain from ascribing to them any portion of merit.
3. “ And that he had avowed, The angels are not immortal.”
Arminius answered each of these charges, thus :
1. “ In reference to the first objection, when he was preaching on sin as the cause of condemnation, he did not by those words exclude original sin ; but Plancius had not correctly understood the nature of the original stain, if under the name of sin he was desirous to have it excluded.
2. “ So far was he from denying the second assertion respecting good works, that he chose rather to defend it as a correct saying.”—Plancius then asked, “ Is justification therefore to be ascribed to good works, provided no merit is attributed to them ?"-Arminius replied, “ Justification is not assigned to works but to faith : In confirmation of this he quoted Romans iv, 4, 5: Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.'
3. “ With regard to the third matter of which he was accused, he had never uttered such a sentiment about the angels in public, but had, he confessed, once mentioned it privately in the house of Plancius, and had established it by solid arguments,--but with this addition, that he still thought immortality to be an attribute properly belonging to God alone, which was manifest from Paul's testimony, (1 Tim. vi, 16,) The blessed and only Potentate, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords ; WHO ONLY HATH IMMORTALITY, dwelling in the light to which no man can approach,' &c. Angels are indeed happy spirits, and are now and will ever be immortal, not by their own nature, but by the external sustentation of God
which preserves them : Much in the same way human bodies had been mortal before the fall, and capable of dissolution ; yet they would never have been called to endure death, unless sin had intervened."
When he had in this manner answered all the objections of Plancius, he added, " that he had never been conscious of having hitherto taught any thing contrary to the Confession and the Catechism; that he received each article and doctrine of faith contained in those writings, in the very sense in which they are severally expounded by nearly all the Reformed Churches; that he then felt no scruple or doubt about any thing except the interpretation of the sixteenth article of the Belgic Confession, to the words of which he was nevertheless willing to adhere."
In the Acts of the Presbytery at Amsterdam, it is officially stated, as the result of the discussions in that meeting, “ After these things had been understood, the assembly determined, that they had no further business to transact with Arminius respecting this controversy, till, by the blessing of God and the interpretation of a General Synod, the true and genuine sense of the before-mentioned article be made more fully known to him.” · Thus ended the troubles of Arminius, while he was a resident minister in Amsterdam ; and if the expressions of Bertius were intended to apply to the period which intervened between the commencement of the year 1593 and the middle of 1603, when he was called to the Professorship at Leyden, his remarks are perfectly just,--for he lived in a state of the greatest amity with his colleagues, and was highly respected by the people of his charge. Private detraction, however, the constant attendant on merit, did not cease its offensive operations; but it shewed itself in a more pointed manner, when, in the course of his observations on the epistle to the Romans, he came to expound the thirteenth chapter, and treated in a learned and profound manner on the various duties which were there inculcated on Magistrates and those under their authority. Some persons thought, that in those discourses Arminius ascribed too extensive a jurisdiction to the civil power in matters of religion. Indeed this was afterwards almost as great a point of difference, between the Arminians and the Calvinists in the Low Countries, as that of predestination. The Arminians paid great deference to the constituted authorities in the State ; and several of them manifested a strict adherence to those principles under most trying circumstances. On the contrary, nearly as high notions about the power of the Keys were entertained by the Calvinists, as by their predecessors the Papists; and they generally claimed for ecclesiastical jurisdiction such matters as could by no ingenuity be made to rank among the duties of the clergy or could properly come under their cognizance.
I.- Page 31. LAURENCE Jacobson REAL was one of the earliest assertors of religious liberty in Holland. Mention is made of his zealous exertions as early as 1565. He was a man of wealth and consideration in Amsterdam, and his fellow-citizens elected him several times as one of the Schepens or Aldermen of that city, in which he also filled other offices of trust and honour, and at last became one of the Admiralty Directors of Zealand. In conjunction with five other of the principal burghers of Amsterdam, he introduced the preaching of the gospel into the province of Holland. JOHN ARENTSON, a basket-maker, was the preacher, and delivered an excellent discourse, on the 14th of July, 1566, in a field near Horn. The lively singing of the congregation was heard in an adjoining monastery, in which the police magistrate of Horn, his deputy, and two young gentlemen, were dining with the monks of the establishment, all of whom went out to hear the basket-maker, and at first seemed by their actions as if they wished to intimidate him; but John Arentson was a man not easily frightened. One of the Monks then leaped over a ditch, and made a hideous noise for the purpose of dispersing the congregation ; but they remained unmoved, and the preacher pursued his discourse, to the whole of which the magistrate, his deputy and two friends listened with the greatest attention, and, on their return, informed the Monks that they were not displeased with what they had heard. On the 21st of the same month, Peter Gabriel, a Fleming preacher, delivered an excellent discourse from Ephes. ii. 8—10, to a great multitude. Though he was an infirm man, he preached four hours, in the middle of a hot day, without intermission. That meeting was attended with several remarkable circumstances, and served greatly to strengthen the hands of the Reformed. The Popish magistrates of Amsterdam seemed to have lost their wonted energy; and the Reformed, after hearing preaching in several of the neighbouring towns and villages, at last ventured, on
the 21st of August, to assemble together for the purpose of Divine worship, at Lastaedie, one of the suburbs of Amsterdam, and soon afterwards introduced the public exercise of the Protestant religion into the city itself.
Real. was a man that had great influence with the common people, and opposed the progress of image-breaking, as well as every other work that savoured of violence. In the early part of the Reformation, he was actively engaged in procuring Protestant ministers from various parts to supply Amsterdam and other towns in Holland. The following account extracted from Brandt's History and his own Memoirs, will convey some idea of the labours which he voluntarily undertook to serve the good cause, while it presents an engaging picture of primitive Christian simplicity in the Church of Amsterdam,a picture by no means of uncommon occurrence in the infancy of such Churches as are called to vegetate and increase in times of persecution, being sound in the faith and holding Christ Jesus as the Head of the body:
In the middle of August, 1566, Reinier Kant and Laurence Real, according to the directions of the Church, went to the village of St. Martin, near the Sijp, in North Holland, to call Nicholas Scheltius, the pastor of that village, to the exercise of the ministry in Amsterdam. They found him still retaining the habit of a Popish Ecclesiastic, and residing with his wife and six children in the house of the parish-priest. They proceeded to acquaint him with the object of their commission, and represented to him that their preacher John Arents had informed them of his having acquired a full knowledge of the truth, and of having frequently conversed with him about forsaking Popery, when the probable support of his wife and . children seemed to be the only obstacles in his way; that God had now furnished him with an opportunity of providing for his family by means of the Reformed Church at Amsterdam; that, the time having at length arrived of rendering yet greater service to religion, he ought not to hide that light which was kindled in him, but to impart it to the world at a period when some liberty of conscience was permitted; and that, in case of his refusing to comply with their request, he must answer for his neglect, before the bar of God.—To these representations he replied, “ Since such an opportunity is offered to me, and since the Lord seems as if he intended to draw me out of the abominations of Popery, before I accede to your wishes I will go to Embden to consult about this matter with Cornelius