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Gisbertus Voetius

1588-1676. Dutch Calvinist theologian. Born at Heusden near Utrecht, he studied at Leyden as the disputes between Gomarus* and Arminius* began the “Remonstrant controversy.” As a minister and young theologian, he supported the Contra-Remonstrant party, which defended an orthodox and systematized Calvinism. He was a delegate to the [[Synod of Dort]]* (1618-19), which condemned the Remonstrants. As a mature scholar, skilled in oriental languages as well as theology, Voetius moved to Utrecht as a professor in 1634, and for three decades and more was known internationally as a defender of scholastic Calvinism. He defended vigorously the independence and importance of the church, attacking the idea (associated with the Remonstrants) that the state should oversee it and allow a wide range of doctrinal positions in it. He rejected state patronage, held that toleration of erroneous doctrines weakened both church and state, and viewed usury and related economic questions as matters for the