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Cornelius Jansen  
Gale's book on the principles of the teachings of Cornelius Jansen, Bishop of Ypres, gave a sympathetic view to a branch of Catholicism that was the focus of much controversy in France. Jansen had remained an outwardly orthodox catholic throughout his life but his book on St Augustine’s doctrine of grace, which was published after his death, was prohibited by the Holy See and condemned as heretical in 1653. Gale noted the similarities of Jansen’s ideas of predestination with those of Calvinists.
Cornelius Jansen
 

 

One notable student of Gale’s work was Sir Isaac Newton. Although famous for his scientific theories, the majority of Newton’s writings were devoted to religious philosophy. Newton was a Unitarian by conviction and wrote a treatise rejecting the Holy Trinity. However, due to the religious climate of the time Newton kept his thoughts on this topic largely to himself.
  Sir Isaac Newton
 
Sir Isaac Newton

 

John Rowe died in 1677, and Gale succeeded him to take charge of the ministry at Holborn. His tenure was short lived as he passed away in March of the following year and was buried in Bunhill Fields.

 

Gale’s work at the academy and the ministry of the church at Holborn was continued by Thomas Rowe, the son of John Rowe. Amongst the pupils to pass through the academy when Thomas Rowe was at the helm was Isaac Watts, who went on to become a prolific hymn writer. Many of his hymns are still widely enjoyed by congregations of various denominations throughout the world.

 

In his will Gale left his vast library to Harvard College, Massachusetts and in doing so more than doubled its collection of books. Gale believed his collection of dissenting works would find an appreciative audience in the New World where many dissenters had fled in order to escape religious persecution so that they could worship freely according to their conscience. Not only did they take with them their religious zeal but also a distrust of monarchy which was to come to the fore almost 100 years later.

 

A list of Gale’s work is shown below.

The True Ideal of Jansenisme, London, 1669
The Court of the Gentiles, Oxford, 1669, 1670, 1671, 1672
The Life and Death of Thomas Tregosse Late Minister of the Gospel, at Milar and Mabe in Cornwal, London, 1671
Theophilie: or A Discourse of the Saints Amitie with God in Christ, London, 1671
The Anatomie of Infidelitie, London, 1672
The Life and Death of Mr. John Rowe of Crediton in Devon, London, 1673
Idea Theologiae, London, 1673
A Discourse of Christ's Coming, London, 1673
Philosophia Generalis, London, 1676
The Court of the Gentiles. Part II., London, 1676
The Court of the Gentiles. Part III., London, 1677
The Court of the Gentiles. Part IV., London, 1677, 1678, 1682
A Discourse of the Two Covenants, London, 1678
Christ's Tears for Jerusalem’s Unbelief and Ruine, London, 1679

 

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The text on this page is the copyright property of Richard Harris

 

 
 
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