Saurin, Elie

Saurin, Elie a French Protestant theologian, was born Aug. 28, 1639, at Usseau, Dauphiny. He was the son of a village pastor, who conducted his education, and at last sent him to study theology at Geneva. Admitted to the ministry in 1661, he preached first at Venterot, and was called to the church at Embrun in the succeeding year. Having refused to uncover his head before a priest who was carrying the sacrament to a sick person, Saurin was banished from the country. He retired to Holland, where he took charge of a church at Delft, in 1665. He was employed to examine the religious opinions of the mystic Labadie, and offered to refute them publicly. So well did Saurin succeed that he procured the deposition of his opponent, and, in order that he should not be suspected of any personal interest in the affair, obtained for Labadie the church at Middleburg. In 1671 Saurin accepted the place of Wolzogen at Utrecht. Here he lived for two years, during the French occupation, in continual agitation caused by his disputes with Jurieu. He began the contest by stating that some of the doctrines of Jurieu were heterodox and very dangerous. Efforts were made to reconcile the two pastors, and the synod of Leeuwarden forbade their writing against each other on pain of excommunication, but all to no effect. The last years of Saurin were devoted to the publication of theological works. He died at Utrecht, on Easter Sunday, 1703. We have from his pen, Examen de la Theologie de Jurieu: Defense de la Doctrine e d l'Eglise Reformee, etc.: Traite de l'Amour de Dieu: Reflexions sur les Droits de la Conscience: and a posthumous work, Traite de l'Amour du Prochain.

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