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Jacob Arminius, 5/8/1603, was appointed professor of theology at the University of Leiden, Netherlands (U. founded 1575).  Jacob Arminius (his name, after being Latinized from the Dutch) was born 10/10/1560 at Outewater, Utrecht.  His father, Herman, died while Jacob was an infant & his mother plus siblings were murdered in the Spanish Massacre of Outewater in 1575 while Jacob was away being educated. 

After studies at the U. of Leiden, Basil, & Geneva Jacob was called to pastor at Amsterdam in 1587 & ordained there the next year.  In 1590 he married the daughter of an influential man.  Lijsbet Reael was 21, Jacob was 30. They union was blessed with 10 children.  He died 10/19/1609; she did not die until 1648.

Without trying to go deeply into the Arminius – Calvin controversy, it is generally understood that Arminius did not set out to be controversial.  Upon study he, in honesty, did not agree with the views of Calvin (did not know him personally) & wrote, preached, taught some of the differences.  His views became known as Arminianism, expressing the freedom of human will as opposed to Calvin’s fatalism.  John & Charles Wesley agreed with much (if not all) that Arminius wrote & included some in Methodism.

Arminius Quote:  “What employment is more becoming and honourable in a creature, a servant, and a son, than to spend whole days and nights in obtaining a knowledge of God his Creator, his Lord, and his Father? What can be more decorous and comely in those who are redeemed by the blood of Christ, and who are sanctified by his Spirit, than diligently and constantly to meditate upon Christ, and always to carry him about in their minds, and hearts, and also on their tongues?” – Jacob Arminius, “First Oration” vol.1, p345.

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