The Life and Teachings of Jacob Arminius (1559-1609)
Jacob Arminius was a sixteenth-century theologian who name lives on in history through the theological system that bears his name. My interest in Arminius stems from the fact that I am personally an Arminian. As a student of the theological systems of Calvinism (named after John Calvin) and Arminianism, I am the lesser known of those two theologians. Mark Galli and Ted Olsen give Arminius the title “Irenic Anti-Calvinist” (in 131 Christians Everyone Should Know, p. 41). That perspective is interesting because they choose to identity Arminius with what he was against, rather than what he was for, although they do try to make him sound peaceful in the process. The systems of Arminianism and Calvinism are historic rivals in soteriological debates, and some interesting observations can be made as we travel back to the sixteenth century.