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fice. In 1570, Peucer, the son-in-law of Melancthon, endeavoured to introduce the doctrine of Calvin on this article, into the Saxon churches. At first, his endeavours seemed to be attended with success; but, having published a catechism, in which the doctrine of Calvin on the Eucharist was plainly insinuated, the Saxon divines took the alarm. Augustus, the elector of Saxony, assembled them at Dresden, propounded to them a formulary of doctrine on the real presence, and ordered them to sign it. On the refusal of Peucer and his adherents, the elector, in 1574, held the famous convocation at Torgau, and committed Peucer and several of his adherents to prison. Peucer was treated with particular severity, and was not released till 1585.
Still, the favourers of the doctrine of Calvin persisted in their opinions. They did not dare to make an open profession of · them; but were known to retain them, and, from their secret attachment to them, obtained the appellation of Crypto-Calvinists, or secret abettors of Calvinism. Augustus was succeeded by Christian the First. Under him, the Crypto-Calvinists emerged from their obscurity, and openly propagated their doctrines. In 1591, they distributed a new Calvinistic catechism, and a translation of the Bible into the German language, acconimodated to Calvinistic principles.
By degrees, the Crypto-Calvinists were openly tolerated; and at length so much countenanced by Christian, as to threaten the Lutheran ascendancy ; but his death, in 1591, put an end to their hopes. Christian the Second, a ininor, succeeded him ; Frederic William, Duke of Saxe-Altembergh, was his guardian, and the regent of the electorate, during his minority. Being warmly attached to Luther, he committed many of the CryptoCalvinists to prison, and, in 1681, Crellius, their principal encourager and patron, was put to death, by his orders. A general persecution of the Crypto-Calvinists ensued, and articles, generally called articuli visitatorii, were formed, and tendered for the signature of all, who were suspected of Calvinism, as a test to discover their principles. They are not numbered among the Symbolic books of the Lutherans, but are singularly regarded by them. As the persons, by whom they were framed, were much esteemed, and as they professed to state in them,
with brevity and precision, the principal points in difference between the Lutherans and Calvinists, a literal translation of them is inserted in the Appendix.' It is made from the edition of them at the end of Dr. Semler's Apparatus ad Libros Symbolicos Ecclesiæ Lutherana.
'Appendix, Note II.
The Symbolic Book of the Arminians.
The triumph of the reformed churches over the Arminians, at the Synod of Dort, was rather apparent than substantial. It may be added to the numerous instances of the unavailing efforts of the temporal and ecclesiastical powers, even when they are united, to prevent the diffusion and adoption of opinions, which the public mind is strongly bent on receiving. Most of the leaders of the Arminians were banished from the states of Holland, or found it necessary to quit them. Those who remained were persecuted, and the general body was subjected to continual vexation. But, after the death of Prince Maurice, a wiser conduct, in their regard, was pursued: the exiles were recalled, and the community at large was permitted to follow their religious principles without molestation. Insensibly, the toleration was so complete, that, with the counivance of the government, they built churches, and founded seminaries for the instruction of their youth; and, for the propagation of their theological principles, established a college at Amsterdam. The first professor of theology at this celebrated institution was Episcopius. Many other of its professors, as Courcelles, Limborch, Le Clerc, and Wetstein, were eminent for their learning. From their remonstrances against the proceedings of the synod at Dort, they obtained the appellation of Remonstrants: from their opposition to the remonstrances, Gomar and his followers were called Contra-Remonstrants.
The great object of the Arminian professors was, if we may be allowed to use their own expressions, to simplify the creed of Christians, and bring them into one fold. In opposition to the followers of Calvin, they held 1st. That God, from all eternity, determined to bestow salvation on those, who, he foresaw, would persevere to the end in their faith in Jesus Christ; and to inflict everlasting punishment on those, who, he foresaw, would continue in their unbelief, and resist, unto the end, his divine succours : 2dly. That Jesus Christ, by his death and sufferings, atoned for the sins of all mankind; but, that those only, who believe in him, can be partakers of these benefits : 3dly. That true faith cannot proceed froin the exercise of our natural faculties and powers, or from the force and operation of free will, so that it is necessary to man's conversion and salvation, that he be regenerated and renewed, by the operation of the Holy Ghost, which is the gift of God, through Jesus Christ : 4thly. That the divine grace begins, advances, and brings to perfection every thing that can be called good in man; but does not force man to act against his inclination, and may be resisted, and rendered ineffectual by his perverse will: 5thly. That persons united to Christ by faith, are thereby furnished with abundant strength to triumph over the seduction of Satan and concupiscence; but, that the question, whether persons thus united to Christ may afterwards fall from their faith, and finally forfeit this state of grace, has not yet been resolved with sufficient perspicuity.
In reading these articles, the reader will naturally ask, which of them justified the religious persecution, which the Arminians suffered, or called down upon them the interference of the civil power. Their persecution gave rise to the learned and eloquent treatise of Grotius, “ De jure summarum potestatum circa sacra.” It was perhaps the first advocation of religious liberty that issued from any press. But Sir Thomas More had, long before, supposed its existence in Utopia.
It is observable, that the difference of opinion between the Arminians and the reformed churches, on the points, which we
have noticed, is the great subject of division between the Wesleyan and Whitfieldian Methodists ; and, in a great degree the apple of discord between the Jesuits and Jansenists.
The theological system of the Arminians, after their return from Holland, underwent, if we credit Doctor Mosheim, a remarkable change. They appeared by his account, almost to coincide with those, who exclude the necessity of divine succours in the work of conversion and sanctification ; and to think that Christ demands from man, rather virtue than faith; and has confined that belief, which is essential to salvation, to a few articles. Thus, the Arminians admit into their communion, 1st. All, who receive the holy Scriptures, and more especially the New Testament; and they allow to every individual his own interpretation of the sacred books :-2d. All who abstain fronı idolatry and Polytheism :-3d. All whose lives are regulated by the laws of God:~4th. And all, who neither persecute, nor bear ill will towards those, who differ from them in their religious principles. Their Confession of Faith was drawn up by Episcopius. It is entitled, “ Confessio sive Declaratio sententia Pastorum, qui in Federato Belgio Remonstratenses vocantur, super præcipuos Articulos Religionis Christiana MDCXXII. Four divines of the established church of Holland, Polyander, Rivetus, Walæus, and Thysæus, published a Refutation of this confession. The authors of the confession replied by their Apology in 1626.
The adversaries of the Arminians have frequently attempted to fix on them the charge of Deism ; but this charge the Arminians have indignantly rejected. A writer in the Bibliotheque Germanique, (Tom. XLVI. Art. 12. P. 208.)' relates, that “ the celebrated Anthony Collins called on Mr. Le Clerc, of Amsterdam. He was accompanied by some Frenchman of the confraternity of those, who think freely. They expected to find the religious opinions of Le Clerc in unison with their own; but they were surprised to find the strong stand which he made in favour of Revelation. He proved to them, with great strength of argument, the truth of the Christian religion. “Jesus Christ, he told them, was born among the Jews : still it was not the