HTS : Theological Studies - Volume 69, Issue 1, 2013
Volume 69, Issue 1, 2013
Author David A. Van OudtshoornSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –7 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1168More Less
Irrevocably singular : baptism as a symbol of unity in the church
In this article I conduct a phenomenological analysis of the concept 'one baptism' in Ephesians 4:4-6. Such an analysis seeks to reveal the essence of a particular concept by bracketing out the theological and ideological presuppositions usually associated with it. The essential concept is then expanded by linking it to the terms most closely surrounding it in the text. A critical theological reflection on the expanded concept shows that 'one baptism' refers to an event by which believers are inducted, once and for all, into the church as the one body of the one Lord, Jesus Christ. The church exists through the presence of the one Spirit who binds believers in an unbreakable bond of love to God and to each other. Because baptism can never be undone or repeated, any liturgical act depicted as a 're-baptism' is, by definition, impossible. This means that churches that baptise the children of believing parents are able to accommodate requests from people who, having been baptised as an infant, in later life wish to celebrate and testify to some significant milestone in their spiritual journey by means of an official church ritual. Such ritualised testimonies, however, refer to the existential lifeworld of believers (their repentance, confession of faith etc.) and are distinct from baptism that refers to the singular eschatological work of Christ and thus cannot be repeated. The church should, however, take pastoral care to ensure that people do not substitute their own spiritual experiences for the reality of salvation that is founded on the singular act of God, for us once and for all in Christ, to which baptism irrevocably refers.
The value and extent of religious participation of members of the South African Police Service (SAPS) : original researchSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –10 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1180More Less
The objective of this research was to determine the extent to which the employees of the South African Police Service participate in religion, and their opinion regarding the value it added to their lives. The range of religions and the various Christian denominations represented was determined. No sampling strategy was used, as all available employees were included in the study (N = 37 816). The survey instrument was administered by Employee Assistance Services professionals. The results of the study indicated that religion played an important role at individual, group, organisational and community level. The majority of the participants in the study (79.4%) were Christian, 15.9% followed by African spirituality, 0.9% were Hindu, and 0.4% were Muslim. An analysis was conducted of the distribution of the religions represented within the nine provinces of South Africa (and Head Office as a collective), and across the four race groups. The Christian denominations best represented in the study were the Dutch Reformed (12.7%), Methodist (6.0%), Roman Catholic (5.8%) and Anglican (5.0%).
Author Jeremy PuntSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –8 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1276More Less
Appreciation for the literary qualities and structural function of Romans 8:18-30 abounds. Recently, some attention has also been given to ostensible anti-imperial sentiments in the letter that Paul directed to a Jesus-follower community in the heart of the Roman Empire. Tensions and ambiguities inherent in this passage become more pointed when it is read with attention to the interplay between creation, conflict and empire. The focus of this contribution is on how creation is portrayed and negotiated in Romans 8:18-30, given its underlying Jewish setting which ought to be filled out by the imperial-infused environment. Acknowledging an anti-imperial thrust in Romans 8:18-30 but reading from a postcolonial perspective offers the advantage of accounting specifically for ambivalence typical of conflict situations characterised by unequal power relations, all of which are appropriate and vital for the interpretation of this passage.
Vermengde leer : innovering in die onderrig van Praktiese Teologie aan voorgraadse studente : original researchAuthor Ian A. NellSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –8 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1241More Less
Blended learning : innovation in the teaching of practical theology to undergraduate students
Blended learning is becoming increasingly prevalent in the academic environment. This approach to learning was developed for various reasons, including the problem of information overloading and the need for integration of theory and praxis. Recent research indicates that changes in the brain necessary for success in the learning process are related to numerous factors like practical exercises, emotions and background factors while learning. The purpose of this research was to evaluate through empirical research the innovative use of blended learning by first-year students in practical theology. The results of two empirical surveys indicate a positive experience of a variety of forms of learning by the students. The results are interpreted with the aid of theoretical insights from the fields of pedagogy and practical theology. Four pedagogical strategies are discussed, all of which individually contribute to the learning process. This includes pedagogies of contextualisation, interpretation, formation and performance. In conclusion, a number of recommendations are made about the use of blended learning in practical-theological teaching. It is done by making use of a case study within a theodramatic approach to practical theology. The use of the film Son of Man is examined as example in the light of the envisaged outcomes for practical-theological teaching.
Source: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –9 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1258More Less
An attempt was made to describe and to eventually implement work space that can be defined as psychologically meaningful and which has increased during the past 5-10 years. Indications are that various researchers on different continents have embarked on a journey to describe the meaningful workplace. Such a workplace is more than a geographical location, it is psychological space; space where the individual employee performs tasks that construe his or her work role, in collaboration with other individuals, within a framework of predetermined time frames, according to certain procedures, based on identified needs and within a formal workflow structure that is normally referred to as the organisation. Within this framework employees become alienated as a result of which the organisation as well as the individual suffer. The organisation experiences a loss of productivity, quality, innovation, et cetera, and the employee a loss of meaning in life and work. Yet, the workplace remains the space where meaning can be gained. It is both the framework and context for meaningfulness at work. Within this framework certain factors and constitutive elements play a facilitating role in experiencing meaningfulness. Various factors including values, and imbedded therein, the Protestant Ethic (PE), (and various other factors, such as for instance spirituality, culture, leadership and management style, etc.), play an important role as facilitating factors towards the experience of meaningfulness at work. Developing a framework and context, on a conceptual level for the positioning of these factors as contributories towards the meaningful workplace, is a first priority. This is what this article is about: to conceptualise the workplace as psychological space, framework and context for understanding the contributory role of PE (and other factors) towards the experience of meaningfulness at work. The positioning of values and the PE as Max Weber understood the concept will be presented in a follow-on article.
Knowing, believing, living in Africa : a practical theology perspective of the past, present and future : original researchAuthor Gordon E. DamesSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –9 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1260More Less
The new democratic era in South Africa brought Western cultural influences forcefully into public and private living domains. This dichotomy deformed African cultures in many ways (Bujo & Muya). Local communities were previously 'public people' living and worshipping in transformative hermeneutical communities. This scenario has changed and local communities are steadily being driven into private spaces. The task of practical theology is to question what the undergirding epistemology and beliefs for this shift are and to reinterpret it in the light of the gospel. The impact of Western culture on African traditional villages is telling in so far as traditional African values and practices are being lost at the expense of Western ideology, technology, media, et cetera (Bujo & Muya). We argue that the former dominant monodisciplinary approach of practical theology contributed to a growing private individualist worldview. Practical theology has since developed into an interdisciplinary approach. This newfound reciprocity in the social sciences led to constructive change in church and society (Dingemans). Practical theology in Africa has to deal with an individualised, pluralistic world and tendencies of discontinuity, uncertainty, violence and destruction. In South Africa, practical theology is called upon to redress the dichotomies and defaults of Western and African cultures, respectively.
The making and prevention of rain amongst the Pedi tribe of South Africa : a pastoral response : original researchAuthor David K. SemenyaSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –5 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1175More Less
This article attempted to respond pastorally to the rainmaking and rain prevention rituals which are practised among the Pedi tribes - also called the Northern-Sotho speaking nation of South Africa. The rituals of rainmaking and rain prevention have been practised among the Pedi for a long time - these rituals are in fact still being practised in some of the villages in and around the Limpopo Province. The rituals are practised in time of drought and also during activities such as weddings or traditional gatherings, this is normally called molato. When the village is experiencing drought, community members, upon instruction from the chief of the village, stage a rain ritual and the moroka [rain making traditional doctor] would take the lead in performing such rituals. Families would also perform rain prevention rituals when a gathering or a wedding is being organised to ensure that the rain does not disturb the gathering and everything goes as planned. Thus the purpose of rainfall rituals is to influence the weather conditions in order to cause rain or drought either for good or for destruction. The mentioned rituals and selected scriptural passages were discussed. This article presented the biblical view of rain and conclusion principles were formulated to understand the Bible's perspective on the mentioned rituals. These conclusions were used for the formulation of practical guidelines.
The relation between creation and salvation in the Trinitarian theology of Robert Jenson : original researchAuthor Anne H. VerhoefSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –7 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1191More Less
This article explored the relation between creation and salvation as acts of God in the theology of Robert Jenson, an American Lutheran theologian. This is important due to Jenson's growing importance as theologian and because of the current importance of ecotheology (and related themes that were implicated by the relation between creation and salvation). Jenson's theology is an effort to tell God's particular story and it can be described as a Trinitarian, narrative and eschatological theology. His starting point is that God's eternity must not be understood as timeless (this is unbiblical and incompatible with the story of creation and redemption) and that creation (space and time) takes place somehow within the being of God. Jenson qualified this 'withinness', but also emphasised that creation is an intelligible whole, a history with an intended end. It is important for him that God's story - a story of dramatic coherence - is not separated from our own and creation's story. Within this understanding of God's story (as dramatic coherence), creation found its own dramatic teleology because salvation also includes creation. Creation is therefore not subjected to pointlessness any longer, but will find its final place within God. The implication of this is that we must value creation much more and act with more responsibility towards it. According to Jenson we must enjoy creation in an aesthetic fashion and delight in creation as a whole because of its dramatic teleology.
Early Christian spirituality according to the First Epistle of John : the identification of different 'lived experiences' : original researchAuthor Dirk G. Van der MerweSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –9 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1286More Less
The interest in this article is early Christian spirituality. The word 'spirituality' is used here denoting 'a lived experience'. Therefore, the article focuses on religious experience in an early Christian community as explicated in the first chapter of the First Epistle of John. Three different lived experiences are denoted here, culminating in the last one: 'having fellowship with the divine'. The first two experiences (experience through physical senses, experience through spiritual senses) pave the way to establish fellowship with the divine. For the author of 1 John, the purpose (ίνα) of these lived experiences is to have (ίνα) complete joy, another form of experience. These three lived experiences express three different configurations of spirituality.
Author Francois P. ViljoenSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –10 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1300More Less
Righteousness is an important term in the first gospel and has a significant concentration in the Sermon on the Mount. The argument in this article is that the first gospel has a community building function. Matthew intentionally uses the word 'righteousness' in the Sermon on the Mount as an instrument to define the identity of his community. Though righteousness can be used in a soteriological sense, it is argued that Matthew mainly uses it in an ethical sense. By righteousness Matthew refers to the proper behavioural norms and attitudes for his community. Commitment to Jesus forms the central focus of the community's identity. Their discipleship is demonstrated by doing the will of God as defined and interpreted by Jesus. Doing the will of God in such a manner is what Matthew regards as the distinguishing mark of this community. Thus they would surpass the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees.
The origin, development and a brief appraisal of the doctrine of the baptism in the Holy Spirit in Christ Apostolic Church, Nigeria : original researchAuthor George O. FolarinSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –8 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1333More Less
This article traces the development of the Christ Apostolic Church's (CAC) doctrine of the baptism in the Holy Spirit, its current official stance and the church ministers' interpretations of the doctrine. To gather data for this work, focus-group discussions were held with groups of CAC ministers in 1992 and 2012. Data gathered were analysed. Selected leaders of CAC were interviewed, and the data from the two sources were compared, interpreted and discussed in terms of related literature. A theological appraisal concluded the work. The findings are that, whilst CAC tenets appear to conform to the Classical Pentecostal model, the opinions of the church's ministers are divided along Pentecostal and Evangelical lines. The official view of the CAC is that the baptism in the Holy Spirit is distinct from the initial work of salvation and that the visible signs of receiving this baptism are multiple, but there are significant disagreements amongst the church ministers to this. The appraisal reveals that the tenet of the church needs to be reworked to conform to the teaching of the Scripture.
'To refer, not to characterise' : a synchronic look at the Son-of-Man logia in the Sayings Gospel Q : original researchAuthor Llewellyn HowesSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –12 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1344More Less
The article intends to address the Son-of-Man problem by applying Delbert Burkett's 'question of reference' to those Son-of-Man logia that appear in the Sayings Gospel Q. A position is taken that recent philological approaches to the Son-of-Man problem have not been overly convincing, successful or helpful. Similarly, attempting to determine the authenticity of individual Son-of-Man sayings has not led to any form of scholarly consensus. In place of these approaches, a synchronic approach is defended and applied to the Son-of-Man sayings in Q, with interesting results.
Author Jaco BeyersSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –10 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1239More Less
Religious symbols are part of our world, relating to another world. In order to understand the process by which symbols grow and develop, the particular context of a symbol is important. In this article a particular theory as to what symbols are, is presented. Religion presupposes the existence of two worlds: this-worldly (profane) and the other-worldly (sacred). The means of communication and reference between these two worlds are symbols. Two examples are investigated so as to indicate how symbols can over time either be demoted or promoted. In the case of the Asherah and asherah as related in the Old Testament a demotion of a symbol is illustrated. The growth of ancient Egyptian religion is an example of a possible promotion of symbols. The conditions under which these processes can occur are investigated.
Author Elma CorneliusSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –7 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1189More Less
What motivates people to serve others? Why do we help those in need, the poor, the sick, the lonely, orphans and widows? Is compassion for humans a natural instinct or is it a learnt response? In the biblical tradition, it is a clear imperative to show one's faith in God in one's behaviour by reaching out to others. Luke 10:25-37 seems to be a key passage in the Bible that teaches and exhorts Christians to be compassionate. Psychology teaches us that compassion is a natural instinct in humans although choice is involved too, and it turns out that religion plays a role in reinforcing compassion. This article is an attempt to understand the motivation and limits of compassion as reinforced by the Christian religion by (1) interpreting Luke 10:25-37 in the New Testament and by (2) using modern psychological insights. It often happens that people reach out to others for self-interested reasons, as serving others psychologically gives them a sense of meaning and fulfilment as well as a positive public image. Compassion, however, is also motivated by a love for God and a love and concern for people in general. As caring for others also affects one emotionally and might cause burnout, it is important to set some limits and boundaries on compassion. As God's love for us leads us to reach out to others, we need to be sure about how and when we should fulfil people's needs, help them to cope with their own needs, help them to understand the reason for their needs, guide them to fulfilling their own needs or help them to find a place where help is available.
Author Jacobus W. GerickeSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –6 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1197More Less
Comparative philosophical perspectives on Old Testament predictive prophecy are rare. Yet whilst the Old Testament is not explicit in its views on the relation between God and time, its narratives do contain implicit metaphysical assumptions regarding the nature of divine foreknowledge. In this article the author listed a standard variety of possible perspectives on how one might construe the way in which YHWH as depicted in Genesis 15:12-16 was thought of with regard to his knowledge of the future, if any. Not opting for any particular view on the matter, especially given that most are anachronistic, the implications and problems of each are noted to show why Old Testament prophecy can also be philosophically interesting.
An African hermeneutic reading of Luke 9:18-22 in relation to conflict and leadership in pastoral ministry : the Cameroonian context : original researchSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –9 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1201More Less
The practice of ministry is an intricate issue which involves the combination of individual efforts from diverse backgrounds. This diversity has been a breeding ground for conflict between the clergy and all the stakeholders involved in parish administration. This article attempted to highlight some of these conflicts, using the Presbyterian Church in Cameroon as a case study. The approach employed is an African hermeneutic reading of Luke 9:18-22 in which the clergy's leadership has been likened to that of Jesus. The presence of many distracting agents did not perturb Jesus' ministry instead, he remained focused. Conclusively, it is observed that the clergy often face conflict within the ministry because they ignore the fact that (1) they are expected to know their mission better than anyone else; (2) the diverse backgrounds of their followers are potential causes of conflict; and (3) there are several distracting agents within the ministry. In short, Jesus' model of conflict management is recommended to the clergy for an effective pastoral ministry.
Author Dichk M. KanongeSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –6 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1255More Less
It is commonly held that irony features significantly in Susanna. This seemingly plausible hypothesis, however, has not yet been supported by compelling evidence resulting from a systematic analysis of Susanna. This study attempts to fill this gap by investigating the main ironic expressions, words and incidents featuring in Susanna. The approach followed consists of uncovering expressions of irony embedded in the story by paying attention to ironic use of metaphor, ironic use of wordplay, ironic use of rhetorical questions, ironic understatements (e.g. litotes), ironic exaggeration (e.g. hyperbole), ironic use of social conventions and traditions and ironic attribution. It is the contention of this study that Susanna is a thematically ironic story. The use of reversed social conventions is the most powerful and the most abundant expression of irony in the story. This dominant derisive technique is possibly aimed at addressing the irrelevance as well as the abuse of Jewish social conventions in the Second Temple period.
Teaching the Bible at public universities in South Africa : a proposal for multidisciplinary approach : original researchAuthor Zorodzai DubeSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –6 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1295More Less
How should the academy teach the Bible? I noted two challenges to this endeavour. Firstly, the Bible has been used as superstructure to justify and to solidify colonialism and apartheid in South Africa which resulted in people to mistrust the way the Western missionaries interpreted the Bible. It also gave birth to the inception of African Independent Churches (AIC) and an urgent need to reinterpret the Bible from the experiences of Africans. However, the initial question remains how the academy should teach the Bible. The complexity of this question is that despite the Bible's association with a colonial legacy, the ordinary people did not stop reading the Bible and to make meaning of their lives from it. This study justifies the place of the Bible in public universities in South Africa and proposes ways the academy should teach the Bible. This study suggests a two-pronged approach to Biblical Studies at public universities. Firstly, the academy should critically engage the ideological presupposition underlying the theories used in the academy. Secondly, the academy must be open to the fact that the Bible is part of popular culture; hence, the academy should critically reflect how the Bible is used in public space. Therefore my hypothesis is that the academy should further focus on critiquing ideological inclinations that underline established truths in addition to focusing on the historical meaning of the Bible and establishing contextual similarities. Teaching the Bible should focus on analysing cultural, political and economic ideological truths that find support from the Bible. I propose that this line of thought is possible through cultural studies and/or interdisciplinary methods.
Author Hendrik GoedeSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –7 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1297More Less
Considering the vast scope of material on slavery in antiquity, this article aimed to design a search filter that delimits the scope of socio-historical aspects specifically relevant to the New Testament passages dealing with slavery. The term 'search filter' was borrowed from Information Technology, denoting defined search terms aimed at more efficient and effective searches of vast amounts of data. The search filter designed in this article made use of the following search terms: the period under investigation; the geographical region under investigation; various definitions of slavery; ancient terminology for slavery; and aspects arising from the New Testament passages themselves. Each of these criteria were considered in turn, and the results were used to define the search filter. Finally, the search filter was represented schematically.
The relationship between prophetic preaching and performing the gift of prophecy in South Africa : original researchAuthor Ben J. De KlerkSource: HTS : Theological Studies 69, pp 1 –8 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.1369More Less
The goal of this article is to investigate the relationship between the liturgy of the worship service, where prophetic preaching is delivered, and the liturgy of life, where the gift of prophecy must be put into practice. In what way could the 'prophets' be equipped to become practitioners of the gift of prophecy? A short description is given of what is understood by prophetic preaching and the gift of prophecy in an effort to determine the relationship between these concepts. In a brief summary, burning questions in church life and in the South African society are addressed: in church life, the questions of extreme conservatism and extreme liberalism are scrutinised and in the South African society, corruption and inequality are investigated. In conclusion, a few guidelines are given for putting the gift of prophecy into practice in the liturgy of life.