Janssens, Erasmus (Lat Erasmus Johannes)
Janssens, Erasmus (Lat. Erasmus Johannes)
a Dutch Unitarian theologian, was born about 1540. He was rector of the College of Antwerp, but his advocacy of Socinianism obliged him to resign that office in 1576. He was next rector of the College of Embden (Oost Frize), but, in consequence of new persecutions, he went in 1579 to Frankfort, and thence to Poland, where he settled at Cracovia in 1584.
Here he asked to be permitted publicly to defend his opinions. The demand was granted, and the renowned Faustus Socinius was his opponent. Their conference lasted two days (29th and 30th of November, 1584), and passed off calmly; but, both having subsequently published an account of the proceedings, they accused each other of incorrectness. Janssens however, on being offered the pastorship of a Unitarian congregation at Clausemburg, in Transylvania, retracted his former principles, and adopted those of Socinius (q.v.), who, as is well known, by his great ability not only silenced all the anti-Trinitarians that' differed from his views, but finally even gained them all over to his side (comp. Krasinski, Reformation in Poland [Lond. 1840, 2 vols. 8vo], 2, 366). Janssens is supposed to have died near the close of the 16th century. His principal works were, Clara Demonstratio Antichristum immediate post morten apostolorum caepisse regnare in Ecclesia Christi (1584, 12mo) [this work gave rise to the persecutions which obliged Janssens to retire to Poland]: — Antithesis doctrine Christi et Anti-Christi de uno verao Deo (anon. 1585, 12mo; with a refutation by Jerome Zanchio, Neustadt, 1586, 4to): — Scriptum quo causas propter quas vita ceterna contingat complectitur, etc. (1589): — Epistola ad Faustum Socinum, with an answer of the latter dated April the 20th, 1590: — De Unigeniti: Filii Dei existentia, sire disputatio inter Eribsmum Johannem et Faustuns Socinum, etc. (Cracov. 1595,12mo): — De Quatuor Monarchiis: — Commentarius in Apocalyps in. 'He published, also, the Bibliorum Pars IV, id est Libri Prophetici, Latina recensio ex Hebraea facta, brevibusque scholiis illustrata ab-Immanuele Tremellio et Franc. Junio (Francf. 1579). See Diercksen's Antuepia Christo nascens, etc., p. 678; Vriemoet, Athen. Fris. p. 182; Fauste Socin, Epist. III ad Matth. Radecium, p. 386, 437); Sanditts, Bibl. Antitrinit. p. 72, 84, 87, 88, 105; Paquot, Mem. pour servir a hist. des Pays-Bas,7, 328333. — Hoefer, Nouv. Biog. Géneralé. 26, 357. (J. N. P.)