Portal:Arminianism/Selected article

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James Arminius

Jacobus Arminius (October 10, 1560 – October 19, 1609), the Latinized name of the Dutch theologian Jakob Hermanszoon from the Protestant Reformation period, (also known by the Anglicized names of Jacob Arminius, James Arminius, or Jakob Herman), served from 1603 as professor in theology at the University of Leiden. He wrote many books and treatises on theology, and his views became the basis of Arminianism and the Dutch Remonstrant movement.

Following his death, his challenge to the Reformed standard, the Belgic Confession, provoked ample discussion at the Synod of Dort, which crafted the five points of Calvinism in refutation of Arminius's teaching.


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The Five Articles of Remonstrance were given by followers of Jacobus Arminius, who did not want to adopt Arminius' name, instead choosing to call themselves the "Remonstrants".

The Five Articles contrast with the Five Points of Calvinism on most points. Article I disagrees that election into Christ is unconditional. Rather, in this article the Remonstrants assert that election is conditional upon faith in Christ, and that God elects to salvation those He knows beforehand will have faith in Him. Article II espouses unlimited atonement, the concept that Christ died for all. This stands in contrast to the limited atonement of Calvinism, which asserts that Christ only died for those God chooses to be saved. Article III affirms the total depravity of man, that man cannot save himself. Article IV repudiates the Calvinistic concept of irresistible grace, contending that mankind has the free will to resist God's grace. Article V, rather than outright rejecting the notion of perseverance of the saints, argues that it may be conditional upon the believer remaining in Christ. The writers explicitly stated that they were not sure on this point, and that further study was needed.


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John Wesley

John Wesley (28 June [O.S. 17 June] 1703 – 2 March 1791) was a Church of England cleric and Christian theologian. Wesley is largely credited, along with his brother Charles Wesley, as founding the Methodist movement which began when he took to open-air preaching in a similar manner to George Whitefield. In contrast to George Whitefield's Calvinism, Wesley embraced the Arminian doctrines that were dominant in the 18th-century Church of England. Wesley's father was of the Arminian school in the church. Wesley came to his own conclusions while in college and expressed himself strongly against the doctrines of Calvinistic election and reprobation.

Whitefield, Harris, Cennick, and others, became the founders of Calvinistic Methodism. Wesley become the founder of Wesleyan Methodism which includes the United Methodist Church and many other modern Methodist denominations.


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Hugo Grotius

Hugo Grotius (10 April 1583 – 28 August 1645), also known as Huig de Groot, Hugo Grocio or Hugo de Groot, was a philosopher, theologian, jurist, Christian apologist, playwright, and poet.

Grotius lived in the transitional era between the feudal society and the establishment of sovereign states. His was an age of religious turmoil between Catholicism and Protestantism, between Arminianism and Calvinism and of the vanishing power of the church as the secular state was slowly coming into its own.

As a theologian, Grotius developed a particular view of the atonement of Christ known as the "Governmental" or "Moral government" theory. He theorized that Jesus' sacrificial death occurred in order for the Father to forgive while still maintaining his just rule over the universe. This idea, further developed by theologians such as John Miley, became one of the prominent views of the atonement in Arminianism.


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Simon Episcopius, circa 1630

Simon Episcopius (January 8, 1583–April 4, 1643) was a Dutch theologian and Remonstrant who played a significant role at the Synod of Dort in 1618. His name is the Latinized form of his Dutch name Simon Bischop.

Episcopius may be regarded as in great part the theological founder of Arminianism, since he developed and systematized the principles tentatively enunciated by Arminius. Besides opposing at all points the peculiar doctrines of Calvinism, Episcopius protested against the tendency of Calvinists to lay so much stress on abstract dogma, and argued that Christianity was practical rather than theoretical—not so much a system of intellectual belief as a moral power and that an orthodox faith did not necessarily imply the knowledge of and assent to a system of doctrine which included the whole range of Christian truth, but only the knowledge and acceptance of so much of Christianity as was necessary to effect a real change on the heart and life.