Earlier toward the end of the fifteenth Preaching. century; d. at Strasburg about 1543,
He was a leather dresser by trade; in the pursuit of his calling he went to Livonia and, in 1523, advocated there the doctrines of Luther and of the Wittenberg Reformation.
With this teaching Hoffmann blended a strain of mysticism that later assumed predominance in his beliefs. He is the type of the untrained lay preacher of the Reformation period who, by sheer force of religious fervor, vehemence of speech, and directness of appeal, presented a formidable competition to the educated clergy. The lack of preachers of the latter type in Livonia made Hoffmann's success the more emphatic. Driven from W ohnar in the autumn of 1524, he made Dorpat the scene of. his labors, where an attempt on the part of the archiepiscopal authorities to seize him led to an iconoclastic uprising (Jan. 10, 1525). Hoffmann's activity was regarded askance by a faction.of the Reformers, but he succeeded in obtaining a letter of approval from Luther and Bugenhagen, and with augmented authority engaged in a feud with the official clergy, against whom he upheld the divine nature and origin of the preacher's mission, advocating also a prophetic interpretation of the Scriptures. Forced finally to leave Dorpat, in 1526 he became preacher among the Germans of Stockholm. There he published a commentary on Dan. xii. which, with other writings, revealed a growing departure from the Lutheran position. The dogmas of justification and predestination were still retained, but eschatological ideas came into the foreground, centering in a belief in the speedy approach of the end of the world. With much labor he evolved his own scheme of the Last Day, and passed from the attitude of preacher to that of prophet, whose. mission was to announce the coming of the Lord. The year 1533 was set for the end of things.'
I In his eschatol which was not marked by~, ty, Hoffmann followed Franciscan Spirituals the •?aborites (see Hum, JOHN, Huserru), Nicholas storo&, and others
A. a. N.
In 1527 Hoffmann left Stockholm, for Holstein.
There he preached for two years openly at odds
with Luther. Frederick 1. of Denmark,
Doctrine however, after subjecting his doctrines
of the to a test, permitted him to continue
Lord's his mission labors, and assigned Kiel
Supper. as his special field. As the result of a
prolonged controversy with Armsdorf
at Magdeburg and with the Sleswick preacher
Marquard Schuldorp, in the course of which Hoff
mann formally abjured the Lutheran theory of the
Lord's Supper, Frederick I. ordered a public dis
putation to be held at Flensburg (Apr. 8, 1529), at
which the Lutheran party was represented by
Bugenhagen. Hoffmann expounded, not without
skill, his conception of the Lord's Supper, the
kernel of which was that the bread is not the body
of Christ but is a seal, sign, and memorial of the
body of the Savior. In receiving the bread the
communicant through faith receives the Word, and
with it the spiritual body of Christ, into his heart.
The origins of his doctrine are to be found in the
early form of the Lutheran doctrine and in Carl
stadt; the principal sources, however, are in his
own mystical thought. He attempted, too, to
distinguish between his theory and that of Zwingli.
terpretation of Revelation, reveals his doctrine in
completely developed form. The history of the
Church is divided into three periods: the first ex
tended from the Apostles to the establishment of
the power of the papacy; the second was marked by
the unrestrained might of the papacy; the third,
beginning with the Reformation, was marked by the
final revelation and the substitution of the,Spirit
for the letter. Two witnesses of the final day were
to appear and were to fall before the power of the
papacy united with the followers of the letter;
then was to follow the disappearance of truth, the
destruction of the spiritual Jerusalem by the Turks,
and the final appearance of Christ. Hoffmann now
drew nearer to the Anabaptists, for whom he de
manded in 1530 the exclusive possession of a church
in the town. Hoffmann was arrested and compelled
to leave Strasburg' but his experiences only hastened
his entrance into the ranks of the Anapabtists, to
whom he brought enthusiasm and courage at a time
when their power in South Germany was already
broken. The impetus which he lent to the move
ment was not without appreciable influence in pre
paring the way for the excesses of John of Leyden
(see ANABAms7s, II., 1 2; MfsTRR, ANABAPTISTS
IN.) From 1530 to 1533 he appeared alternately in
East Friesland and in the Strasburg region. His la
bors were the most important factor in transplanting
Anabaptist doctrines from the south to the north of
' On his way to Strasburg, in cooperation with Carlstadt
he Propagated anti Lutheran views in East Friesland, where
Lutheranism and Zwmg banism were in open conflict. There
he gained an influence that was momentous in consequences,
A. IL N.
811 RELIGIOUS ENCYCLOPEDIA HothneLeter Germany, where Emden became the center of his activity. In East Friesland he published his most important work, the Ordonnanlie Gottes, the basic principle of which is the bond that exists between God and man. Toward the end of 1530 he went to Holland, where the Anabaptist teachings had already been disseminated by Jan Volkertezoon. The preaching of the two established an Anabaptist community in Holland which exercised a historic influence in later times.
In 1533 he came once more to Strasburg. It was the year set for the final catastrophe, and Strasburg
was to be the new Jerusalem. In May Later the authorities caused him to be ar
Years. rested, in which act he saw but the
fulfilment of his own prophecies. Before his judges he asserted that he had never preached opposition to authority, and disavowed whatever was illegal in Anapabtist teaching. Yet it was quite apparent that, however submissive to authority he may have been, the effect of his teachings was revolutionary. In June Butzer and other leaders of the Strasburg Church disputed with him on his doctrine of the body of Christ (he maintained that the material body of the Savior was not derived from the virgin, but that the eternal Word had been made flesh in the womb of Mary by a special act of God), the freedom of the will, and infant baptism. Hoffmann held fast to his views, so that even the passing of the date fixed for the destruction of the world did not shake him. The number of " Melchiorites " in Strasburg, on the lower Rhine, in Westphalia, and in Holland continued to grow. While he was personally irreproachable in character, his chiliastic hopes inspired the outrages of the fanatics of Munster who, until the capture of that city, possessed his hearty sympathy. Kept under restraint by the authorities, Hoffmann refused to abjure his millennial expectations, though in his later years he showed himself more in sympathy with the Strasburg Church. The Melchiorites remained a separate faction among the Anabaptists for some time, and spread as far as Holland and England, but in Germany disappeared ultimately among the other Anabaptist parties. The influence of Hoffmann may be traced in the writings of Menno Simon and other Anabaptist writers. See ANABArrlsTs, II., § 2. (A. HEGLBat) K. HoLL.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: The best biographies are W. 1. Leenderts,
Melchior Hofmann, Haarlem, 1883, and F. 0. our Linden,
Melchior Hofmann, Haarlem, 1885. Consult: H. C.
Vedder, Short Hiat. of Baptiste, pp. 88, 97, Philadelphia,
1891; A. H. Newman, in American Church History Series,
ii., pp. 25 27, New York, 1894; idem, Hint. of Anti Pedo
baptism, pp. 254 271, Philadelphia, 1897; K. Rembert,
Die Wiedertdufer im Herzogtum Jilieh, Berlin, 1899; G.
Tumbitlt, Die Wiedertaufer, p. 30, Bielefeld, 1899; J.
KSetlin, Martin Luther, i. 625, ii. 148, Berlin, 1903; Cam
bridge Modern History, ii. 314, 320, New York, 1904; A.
Hulshof, Geschiedenis roan de dooppesinds to Shaaaeburp.
Amsterdam, 1905;ADB, xii.838; also the literature under ANABArxrs". '
HOFFMANN, (LUDWIG FRIEDRICH) WILHELM: Court preacher in Berlin and general superintendent. of the Brandenburg oonsistory; b. at Leonberg (8 m. w.n.w. of Stuttgart), Wiirttemberg, Oct. 30, 18(16; d. at Berlin Aug. 28, 1873. He was educated at the seminaries of Schoathal and Ttl
bingen, and in 1829 became vicar of Heumaden, near Stuttgart, but three years later was appointed a lecturer in the seminary of Tilbingen. The following year he was made vicar at Stuttgart, and went to Winnenden in 1834 as deacon, where, together with the physician Zeller, he was active in the sanitarium at Winnenthal. In 1839 he was called to Basel as inspector of missions, and there reorganized the educational institutions, expanded the missionary territories of Basel in Asia, Africa, and North America, and reformed the missionary meetings of his congregation, increasing their interest by leotures'on geography, history, and ethnology. At the same time he lectured at the university. From Basel he went to Tiibingen as professor and superintendent of the seminary. In 1852 Frederick William IV. appointed him court preacher, and soon afterward made him general superintendent of the Brandenburg consistory. For two decades.he held this position, for which his theological convictions, in which he was an adherent of Bengel, especially adapted him, since he regarded the union of the Lutheran and Reformed confessions as an indispensable requirement of the time. Here, too, he carried out the king's plan for the organization of a Domkanditatenatift, in which theological students should be enabled to continue their studies, gain practice in sermons and catechesis, and do practical work among the congregation of the cathedral. Among Hoffmann's numerous literary works special mention may be made of the following: Miaaions8tunden and Vortrdge (3 vols., Stuttgart, 1847 53); Misaionafragen (Heidelberg, 1847);Die Epochen der Kirchengeschit:hte Indiena (Berlin, 1853); Die chriethche Litteratur als Werkzeug der Mission (1859); and Deutschland einat and jetzt in Lichte des Reichea Gottes (1868). He also reedited Johann Albrecht Bengel's Erktdrte Ofenbarung Johannes and, in collaboration with Heim, a preacher in Stuttgart, published Erbatliehe Auslegung der grossen Propheten naeh Auszugen ate den Schriften der Reformer toren. He likewise wrote a refutation of the Leben Jesu of David Strauss (Stuttgart, 1836), who had been his fellow student at Tubingen, and for thirteen years was the editor of the Baaeler Miaaion&~azin, bides being the author of numerous sermons and reports of missionary activity. (R. K6G$Lt.)
BIBLIOGRAPHY: C. H. Hoffmann, Leben and Wirken des . . . L. P. W. Hoffmann, Berlin, 1878 (by his son); New
evanpelische Kirchenuitunq, 1873, nos. 43 49.
HOFFMANN, RICHARD ADOLF: German Protestant; b. at Kbnigsberg June 22, 1872. He was educated at the universities of K6nigsberg and Halle, and after being assistant to Prof. A. H. E. Klbpper from 1893 to 1897, became in the following year privat docent for New Testament exegesis and dogmatic theology at K6nigsberg, and professor of New Testament exegesis in 1907. He has written Die Abendmahlegedanken Jeau Christi (K6nigsberg, 1896) and Das Markusevangelium and seine Quillen (1904).
HOFFMANNITES. See FRIENDS OF THE TEMPLE.
HOFFMEISTER, lief mai'ster, JOHANNES Augustinian; b. at Oberndorf (43 m. s.w. of Stuttgart), Wurttemberg, e. 1510; d. at Gilnaburg (30 m.
8oftmeister THE NEW SCHAFF HERZOG 312
Hofstede w.n.w. of Augsburg) Aug. 21 or 22, 1547. It is
uncertain where he received his education, and when
and where he entered the Augustinian order. About
1527 he lived in Mainz, and was designated as an
Augustinian when he was . matriculated at the
University of Freiburg, Dec. 15, 1528. From 1533
he was prior in the monastery of the imperial city
of Colmar. The monastery was much demoralized,
and Hoffineister took great pains to effect better
conditions. The Evangelical faith threatened to
enter its doors, and the prior inflicted the severest
punishments upon monks who deserted their faith.
He perceived that deficiency in preaching was one
of the great causes of the decline of the Roman
Catholic Church, and by his own example attempted
reforms. In 1542 he became provincial of the
Augustinians in the Rhenish Swabian province.
There were only eleven monasteries left, with less
than forty monks, and Hoffineister tried his beat
to keep them from the Lutheran heresy. In the
mean time his efficiency and activity in preaching
at Regensburg. Rut he was little adapted for peace
ful negotiations, and religious disagreement was in
tensified by personal differences and mutual lack of
respect. During his sojourn in Regensburg Hoff
meister preached in the cathedral, and at the solicita
tion of the emperor continued his activity there
even after the colloquy. In 1548 he was appointed
vicar general over all Augustinian monasteries of
Germany; but his main interest was devoted to the
politics of the emperor. After his activity in Regens
burg he preached for two months at Munich. On
Jan. 15, 1547, he went to Uhn, and a few months
later to Dillingen. Shortly before his death the
emperor called him to the Diet of Augsburg, but he
died on the way thither.
Hoffmeister's first published work was Dialogorum
hbri duo, quibus aliquot ecclesite dogmata Luthera
norum et verbis et aententiis roborantur (Freiburg,
1538), in which he tried to show that the " innova
tors " not only disagreed among themselves, but
that they defended the Roman doctrines by some
statements in their writings. A second treatise,
written in still more vehement language, was
directed against Luther's Schmalkald Articles,
Wahrhdftige Entdeckung and Widerlegung deren
Artikeln die M. Luther au, f das Concilium zu schicken
and darauf beharren furgenammen. Mit vorgesetzter
Anzeig wer das Conch fliehe oder hinders (Colmar,
1539). The Council of Colmar, although it was
Roman Catholic, confiscated the publication be
cause it feared serious trouble in consideration of the
growing Evangelical sentiment; but Hoffmeister
was not discouraged. The colloquies at Hagenau,
Worms, and Regensburg induced him to treat the
Augsburg Confession as he had done the Schmalkald
Articles. In this way originated his treatise, Judi
eium de articulis eonfesstonis Jtdei anno MDXXX
Ccesar. M. Augusta; exh"is, quatenus scilicet d
Catholicis admittendi sunt aut reiieiendi (published
after his death, Mainz, 1559; German, Constance,
1597). In the hope of winning the Protestants by
a real betterment of conditions which he expected from the council, Hoffmeiater made at times sweeping concessions, and with great frankness expressed himself on the conditions of his Church. Another polemical treatise of Hoffineister is entitled Canones give clause aliquot, ad interpretandum sttcrae Biblir arum scrn:Pturas (Mainz, 1545). He also published Loci, communes rerun theologicarecm (Ingolatadt, 1547), a comprehensive compilation of passages from the Church Fathers, which has been frequently edited, and several series of sermons.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: A. HShn, Chronolopia provincia RlwnaSueuicw ordinis . . . S. Aupuetini, Wiiraburg, 1744; H. Rocholl Einfiihrung der Reformation in Kolmar Colmar, 1878; A. van Druseel, in AMA, 3d class, i., f (1878), 137 eqq.; idem, ZK(#, iii (1879), 484; N. Paulus, Dar AuyustinermGnda Johann Ho$meiater, Freiburg, 1891; G. Bogy serf, in sU#er ,/fir tottrttembergiache Kirohen?uchichte, 1894 p 70, 1895, p. 172; J. 8ohleoht, Johann Hoffineister ale Dichtcr, in Katholik, lxavii. 2, pp. 188 eqq.
HOFMANN, JOHANN CHRISTIAN KONRAD: German Protestant; b. at Nuremberg Dec. 21, 1810; d. at Erlangen Dec. 20, 1877. He was educated at the universities of Erlangen (1827 29) and Berlin (1829 32), devoting himself chiefly to theology and history. After teaching several years at the gymnasium in Erlangen, he became repetent in the theological faculty of the university, where he first became entirely absorbed in the study of the Bible and where the questions to which he devoted the beat part of his life began to occupy him. These were especially the doctrine concerning the inspiration of the Bible, prophecy, and fulfilment. In 1838 he established himself as privet docent, at the same time keeping his position at the gymnasium. In 1841 he was appointed professor at the university; the following year he accepted a call to Rostock. Although the number of his hearers was here considerably smaller, a new field of activity opened itself in union with Kliefoth, Karsten, and Wichern, he labored zealously in the field of home missions. He remained at Rostock until 1845, when he was recalled to Erlangen, and it was chiefly through his proficiency and his working in harmony with his colleagues that a new period of prosperity for the university dated from this time. His interest in missions increased in the land of his birth; he became committee member of different missionary societies and member of the General Synod of Bavaria, and took part in the editorship of the ZeitsehriJt fur Protestantismua and Kirehe. He was also interested in political affairs, and represented ErIangen and Fiirth at several sessions of the Bavarian parliament. But he did not lose eight of the main purpose of his life, his career as professor and writer. He lectured on a great number of books in the New Testament, on hermeneutics, propsedeutica, and ethics, the secret of his success lying in the fact that he confined himself in a consistent, clear, and precise manner to the subject matter and pretended to be nothing but an interpreter of Scripture.
Among Hofmann's first publications were two historical works Geachichte des Aufruhrs in den .Sevennen (Ndrdlingen, 1837) and Tl'eltgeschichte fur Gymntcsien (1839; 2d ed., 1843). His first effort in theology was Die siebenzig Jahre des Jeremiaa
$i$ RELIGIOUS ENCYCLOPEDIA Hoffmeister
and die siebenztg Jahrwochen des Daniel (Nurem
berg, 1836). The seventy weeks of Daniel he counts
in the order 62+1+7; the 62 extend from 605 to
171 B.C.; the single week, from 171 to 164 B.C.; the
other seven mark the intervening period before
Christ's coming. In his Weissagung and Erfullung
im Alien and NeuenTestament (2 parts, N6rdlingen,
1841 44) he brought prophecy into closest connec
tion with history, and treated it as an organic whole.
History itself is prophecy; and each period contains
the germ of the future, and prefigures it. The entire
Scriptural history is a prophecy of the final and
eternal relation between God and man. The incar
nation marks the beginning of the essential fulfil
2 vols., 1857 60), is an attempt to prove the authen
ticity and divine origin of Christianity from its
records by using the Biblical record as one organic
whole. He started from the idea that, to understand
Christianity, it was necessary only to develop the
simple fact that makes men Christians, or the com
munion of God with man mediated by Christ. He
starts with the new birth, and with him all is his
torical. The work aroused opposition. The author
had denied the doctrine of vicarious atonement, and
the charge of denying the atonement altogether was
made against him. To this he replied in Schutz
schriften (5 parts, 1856 59). His other works were
Die heiligen Schriften des Neuen Testaments (9 parts,
186281); Theologische Ethik (1878); Eneykloptidie
der Theologie (NSrdlingen, 1879); Btblische Herme
neutik (1880). (A. HAUCK.)
BIBLIOGRAPHY: W. Volck, Erinnerunpen an J. C. K. von
Hofmann, Erlangen, 1878; A. F. C. Gran, A. P. C. Vil
mar . . . and J. C. K. von Hofmann, GGtereloh, 1879; H.
Schmid, Vermischte Auisdsze von Prof. von Hofmann, Er
langen, 1878; W. Volek, Theolopiache Briefe der Prof
Delitzach and won Hotmann, Leipsic, 1891.
HOFMANN, RUDOLPH HUGO: German Lu
theran; b. at Kreischa (10 m. a. of Dresden) Jan.
3, 1825. He studied at the University of Leipsic
1843 47, and after being afternoon preacher in
the university church at Leipsic in 1850 51 and
pastor at Stormthal, near Leipsic, in 1851 54, was
professor in the Ftlrstenschule at Meissen until 1862.
In 1862 he was appointed associate professor of prac
tical theology at Leipsic, and four years later became
honorary full professor, while since 1871 he has been
active professor of the same subject. He is also a
privy ecclesiastical councilor and a cathedral canon,
and in theology is an Evangelical Lutheran. He has
written Das ZeicKen des Menschensohns am Himmel (Leipsie, 1849); Das Leben Jesu naeh den Apokryphen (1851); Symbolik (Leipsie, 1856); Die Lehre vom Gewn:ssen (1866); Predigten gehalten in der Universitditskirche zu Leipzig (1869); Schulbt'bel (Dresden, 1872); Zum System der praktiachen Theologie (Leipsie, 1875); Predigten fiber daa Vaterunser(1881); Die freaenchristlichenLiebest4tigkeiten and die Gemeinde (1884); Rechtfertiggung der Schule der Reformation gegendberungerechtfertigtenAngrifen (1889); and Galiltia auf dein Oelberg (1896).
HOFMEISTER, hef mai'ster (Gr. Oikonomos), SEBASTIAP: Swiss Reformer; b. at Schaffhausen 1476; d. at Zofingen (25 m. s.e. of Basel) Sept. 26, 1533. He became a Franciscan friar in Schaffhausen, and then went to Paris and studied classical languages and Hebrew for five years. In 1520 he returned to his native city, and in the same year became lector in the monastery of his order at Zurich and entered into close friendship with Huldreich Zwingli, whose influence upon him became decisive. He was removed to Constance and thence to Lucerne, and at the latter place began his reformatory activity. After having been accused of heresy and expelled from the town, he returned to Schaffhausen, where he became preacher of the principal church. He attacked the ecclesiastical abuses so forcibly that he won over a great number of the citizens to his cause, while at the same time he excited the opposition of another and stronger party.
In Jan., 1523, Hofmeister took part in the religious colloquy between Zwingli and Faber, vicargeneral of Constance, at Zurich, and was one of the presidents in the second disputation at Zurich in Oct., 1523, against the Anabaptists. The Romanists sent Erasmus Ritter of Bavaria to Schaffhausen to oppose Hofmeister's activity, but Ritter took the part of the Reformer. ~ In 1525, however, Hofmeister had to leave the city. He became preacher in Zurich after abandoning his antipedobaptist views, but in 1526 appeared again in Grisons as leader of an important religious colloquy at Ilanz. In 1528 he went to the disputation at Bern, where, upon the recommendation of Zwingli, he was retained and employed as professor of Hebrew and catechesis. But after a few months he went to Zofingen asPreacher. For the cause of the Reformation in Switzerland he wrote Ein treuwe ermanung an die Strengen, Edlen, festen, frommen and weisen Eidgenosaen, das sieh nit dureh ire falschen propheten verfiirt, sich wider die lere Christi setzend (1523).
BIBLIOGRAPHY: M. Kirchhofer, Seb. Wagner, penannt Hofmei8ter, Zurich, 1808; C. Brunner, Due alte Zoflnoen and sein Chorherrenetift, pp. 58 59, Aarau, 1877; R. Stiihelin, Huldreich Zwinpli, 2 vole., Basel, 1895 97; S. M. Jackson, Huldre%ch Zwinpli, pp. 204, 253 255, New York, 1903; Sebaff, Christian Church, vii. 129 130. Hofmeister'a letters are in Zwingli, Opera, ii. 166, 348, vii. 146, 289.
HOFSTEDE, PETRUS: Dutch theologian; b. at Zuidlaren (10 m. s.s.e. of Groningen), province of Drenthe, Apr. 16, 1716; d. at Rotterdam Nov. 27, 1803. He studied theology at Groningen and Franeker, and in 1739 became preacher at Anjum, in the province of Friesland. Then he was appointed preacher in Steenwijk and in Oost Zaandam, until
THE NEW SCHAFF HERZOG
in 1749 he received a call to Rotterdam. In 1770 he became also professor honoraraus at the university and lectured on church history and archeology.
In 1767 there appeared at Paris a political novel &lisaire, by J. F. de Marmontel, in which the author defended not only entire freedom of religion, but preached the doctrine that it is of no consequence what a man believes if he only lives in a virtuous manner. The work caused a sensation, and after being translated into Dutch in 1768, was attacked by Hofatede in his De Belisarius van den Heer Marmontel beoordeeld . . . (Rotterdam, 1769). He calls Marmontel a Pelagian naturalist, because he admits the truth of revelation, but denies its necessity for salvation; because he taught that all virtuous pagans are saved; and because, according to his view, reason is entirely sufficient for salvation. He appealed to Scripture against Marmontel and undertook to prove that a closer investigation would leave little of the virtues of those pagans who have been praised most. Hofstede's work appeared in three editions in one year, and a German translation was published in Leipsic and Wesel. Being attacked by liberal theologians, especially by the Remonatrants, for statements concerning the sins of Socrates and other pagans, he now found it necessary to combat with all his powers the views of the Liberals. He contributed considerably to De Nederlandsche Bibliolheek, an orthodox periodical, founded in 1774. His principal work is Byzonderheden over de Heilige Schrift (3 parts, 1766 75), in which he shows himself a keen exegete, a good scholar, and a capable archeologist. In God,geleerde en Geschiedkundige Verhandeling over het klein getal der egte MartelOs,rs (appended to the second part of his Byzonderheden) he tried to prove that in the first centuries as well as in later times there were few who revealed the true character of a martyr. In OoatIndische kerkzaken (2 arts, 1779 80) he developed a good plan for presenting Christianity to the inhabitants of the East Indian colonies.
(S. D. vAN VEEN.)
BIBLIOGRAPHY: J. P. de Bie, Hat Imen en de werken van Petrua Hofstede, Rotterdam, 1899. Consult also C.Bepp,
Johann Stinstra en sifn tiyd, 2 vols., Amsterdam, 1865
1866; J. Hartog, in Geloof en Vriyheid, 1875; 8. D. van
Veen, in the Historische Avonden collection of the Gron
ingen Historical Society, 1896, pp. 242 264.
HOFSTEDE DE GROOT, PETRUS: A founder of the Groningen school of theology (see GRONINGEN SCHOOL); b. at Leer, in East Friesland (38 m. e. of Groningen), Oct. 8, 1802; d. at Groningen Dec. 5, 1886. He was educated at the University of Groningen, and in 1826 he became preacher of the Reformed congregation in Ulrum, province of Groningen. In 1829 he was appointed professor at Groningen as successor of Clarisse. With his colleagues, J. F. van Oordt and L. G. Paresu, he founded the Groningen School (q.v.), and edited the periodical Waarheid in Liefde, to which he contributed numerous articles of a scientific and devotional nature.
Although De Groot adhered to the reality of the facts of salvation and laid all emphasis upon the person, the work, and the life of Christ, looking
upon him as the center of universal history, he was nevertheless in open contradiction with the doctrine of the Church in important articles of belief. He qualified the doctrine of the absolute inspiration of the Bible, denied the divinity of Christ and the atoning power of his blood, and rejected the dogma of the Trinity. The orthodox party protested against his teachings, but the synod took the part of De Groot, and the number of his adherents among preachers and members of .congregations increased steadily. The orthodox opposition, however, also became stronger and stronger. It can not be denied that the Groningen School paved the way for " modern theology," but De Groot was not able to follow it like some of his associates. He was too mystically inclined to find peace in its intellectualism, and his conservative spirit rebelled against its destructive criticism; but the influence of the modern tendency increased in such a way that many of his disciples and adherents forsook him. In this way De Groot was brought into closer contact with the orthodox.
Of his numerous works may be mentioned Epis
ttala ad Hebraos cum Paulinis epistolis armparota
(Utrecht, 1825) and De Clemente Alezandrino,
philosopho Chriatiano (Groningen, 1826). He re
edited Hugo Grotius' Adnotationes in Novum Tes
tamentum (9 parts, Groningen, 1826 34). The fruits
of his studies in church history were: Geschiedenis
van de Broederenkerk to Groningen (Groningen, 1832)
and, in his old age, De oud katholieke beweging in het
licht der Kerkgeschiedenis (Groningen, 1877). Of
text books he published Inatitutio Theologize naluralis