HTS : Theological Studies - Volume 70, Issue 1, 2014
Volume 70, Issue 1, 2014
Source: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –8 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2733More Less
The present article examines the use of κρούω in Q 11:9 against the backdrop of documentary papyri and Greek literary texts that employ the verb to evoke a stock scene of aggression and threat at the door of a house. In the unit 11:2-4, 9-13 the Sayings Gospel employs the same language and gestures in a similar rhetorical situation to advance a complex and ambiguous representation of human agency in prayer, which is not conceived as a mere passive expectancy of God's intervention. This representation fits the socio-cultural profile of village scribes as the authors of Q, given their familiarity with administrative terminology and their acquaintance with widespread and simple rhetorical tropes. Moreover, such an ambiguous stance towards human agency is mirrored in Q's similarly complex understanding of human participation in the establishment of God's βασιλεία. Finally, comparable thematic and linguistic features have been detected in the 'parable of the friend at midnight' (Lk 11:5-8), strengthening the hypothesis that the parable might have been part of the Sayings Gospel.
Source: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –7 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2750More Less
Many have attempted to identify the opponents in Jude and have addressed the manner in which the author characterises this group. Moreover, scholars have expended considerable energy on the analysis and explication of Jude's rhetorical structure and style, and there is wide consensus that as a text, Jude is a sophisticated letter. However, less work has attended to the evaluation of Jude within the tradition of Graeco-Roman invective. In comparing verses from Jude to some examples from such literature, we find similar themes. In particular, the letter of Jude and some Graeco-Roman moralists engage in a particular tactic to undermine, even destroy, the character of their opponents. They both present them as effeminates, which, although a stereotype, is one of the worst insults a writer or orator could wage against an adversary. This article argues that Jude engages in such character assassination, invoking effeminacy in the manner that he describes his opponents' behaviour, and placing them in a long line of debauched and condemned figures from ages past.
Source: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –8 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2736More Less
The resurrection of Jesus according to Jozef Ratzinger/Benedictus XVI.
As a follow-up to my earlier article in HTS Teologiese Studies/Theological Studies ('The Pope's Jesus book and the Christologies of the gospels' ), this contribution concerning the Jesus trilogy by Jozef Ratzinger will discuss the idea he presents of Jesus' resurrection and how his view should be assessed from the perspective of the current state of affairs in biblical scholarship. In addition, this article articulates a number of proposals that can take the discussion a step further. In that context, the following questions are dealt with: What is meant when we speak about the body of the risen Jesus? Are there - except for terms like 'to raise from the dead' or 'to rise up' - other formulas used in the New Testament to describe the fundamental reversal after Jesus' death? Can Ratzinger's biased focus upon the concept of 'resurrection' be expanded on the basis of other Old Testament models of thought or faith paradigms that can help us to understand that Jesus, through the agency of God, has come to share in a life that is no longer limited by death? What factors played a role in the origin of the belief in Jesus' resurrection? This article shows that Ratzinger too strongly emphasises continuity between the historical Jesus and a number of New Testament Christologies and the way in which they were crystallised in later ecclesiastical dogmatic formulations.
Author Vuyani S. VellemSource: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –7 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2752More Less
The arrival of a salvationist, authoritative religiosity through Western Christianity in South Africa, in the company of a capitalist modernity, did not only dismantle and subvert the African indigenous dispensation of religiosity. It also sought to destroy it completely and arguably continues to do so in subtle forms in the 21st century, by attacking the imagination and consciousness of black Africans. This article argues that African religiosity as expressed in African Initiated Churches (AICs) is the site of the spirituality of liberation. Employing the notion of mokhukhu - a shack - the article places the sanity of black Africans, the spirituality of liberation, black African agency and consciousness within the narrative of African religiosity. It concludes by offering African religiosity as a resource for an alternative civilisation and an important agenda in the current debates of the World Communion of Reformed Churches.
Author Kobus Van RooyenSource: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –9 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2714More Less
As a lawyer, it is a privilege to contribute to this Festschrift in honour of Professor Doctor Johan Buitendag. His entire career has been a quest for the truth. In the process, he has fearlessly rejected political agendas based on the Bible, and has inspired countless students in their quest to serve God in a practical and humane manner. His published research as well as the output of his doctoral students, both present and past, bear witness to a life dedicated to the search for knowledge in the service of God. He has also assisted substantially in placing South African theological research on the international map. In a sense, this article which deals with the protection of the right to a fair trial of an accused, also acknowledges Johan Buitendag's quest for justice for all South Africans, whatever their creed, gender, race or standing. The subject of my article demonstrates my own quest to promote the constitutional right of an accused to a fair trial, a right that should not be subject to inordinate pressure by the media, and which gives priority to the right of an accused to be presumed innocent: an accused who may frequently suffer loneliness and a sense of rejection. Related to that it is, of course, always important to bear in mind that freedom of expression is at the heart of our democracy. A balance has, accordingly, to be struck between the competing rights.
Die 'vergroening' van die Christelike godsdiens : Charles Darwin, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin en Lloyd Geering : original researchSource: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –9 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2712More Less
The greening of Christianity: Charles Darwin, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin and Lloyd Geering.
Since the time of Charles Darwin, evolutionary biology challenged the metanarrative of Christianity which can be summarised as Fall-Redemption-Judgement. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin tried to circumvent these challenges by integrating the traditional Christian doctrines with evolutionary biology. However, he did not succeed since the Catholic Church, time and again, vetoed his theological publications. A number of Protestant theologians promoted his views but even they could not convince ordinary Christians to accept his views. These were too esoteric for Christians. Most of them were convinced that the acceptance of the theory of evolution will eventually undermine their faith. In recent years Lloyd Geering argued a case for the creation of a new narrative in which the Big Bang and the theory of evolution do play a role. He calls it the 'Greening of Christianity'. This article discusses the metanarrative of Christianity and the challenges the theory of evolution presents before it assesses the views of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin and Lloyd Geering.
Source: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –8 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2740More Less
This article discusses the view of the Leiden professor Paul Cliteur that human rights are essentially secular and require rejection of God's will as source of moral authority. Firstly, it analyses Cliteur's reception of Kant and his claim that an exclusively anthropological grounding of human rights is the only possible one. Next, it investigates Nicholas Wolterstorff's criticism of Kant's grounding of human dignity in the rational capacity of mankind and his theistic grounding of human rights in God's love by the mediating concept of human worth. Although Wolterstorff rightly believes that God's special relationship with human beings is ultimately the best ground for human rights, his understandings of God's love and of human worth appear to be problematic. Finally, the article explores the possibility to ground human rights directly in God's justice by construing creation, the giving of the Ten Commandments and the justification of the sinner as central divine acts of justice in which God has given human rights to all human beings.
Emotion and the affective turn : towards an integration of cognition and affect in real life experience : original researchAuthor Cornel W. Du ToitSource: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –9 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2692More Less
Emotion is caused by many factors, some of which are evolutionary, neurological, chemical, environmental, societal, personal and religious. Mostly, however, we are oblivious of the causal factors, many of which may function on a biological level or subconsciously, although the emotional effect is experienced physically and consciously. Emotions change as the trigger mechanisms in the cultural context change. This usually happens unnoticed over long periods. Internet databases have now made it possible to study the use of emotive words; this point is discussed. Of particular interest is the interaction between emotion and reason. Models that reduce emotion to the physical level are scrutinised critically. Reason is not emotionless and emotion is not always irrational. The close interrelationship of emotion and reason often makes it difficult to distinguish accurately between the two. The so-called affective turn takes cognisance of cultural, social, religious and other environmental factors; this broader approach clarifies the importance of affect's role in rationality. One way of viewing emotion and affect is to look at the accompanying language; here the role of metaphor and narrative is pertinent. The traditional elevation of reason above emotion is examined critically as part of the affective turn that broadens the meaning and scope of emotions. I focus on the role of emotion in religion and factors that influence it, and explore the accent of affect in new spiritualities.
Inculturation : adaptation, innovation and reflexivity. An African Christian perspective : original researchAuthor Graham A. DuncanSource: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –11 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2669More Less
The purpose of this article is to examine the changing understandings of processes and terms which have been and are currently in use regarding the outworking of the mission of the church. This historical and missiological approach will evaluate the contribution of a number of African and other theologians during the 20th century and also the opening years of the 21st century. It will cover the missionary period from the end of the 18th century with a special focus on the impact during the 'high missionary era' (1880-1920) to the present. The focus will predominantly be on Africa and Pentecostalism, the role of women and the African diaspora as examples of effective inculturation.
Methodism and transformation in South Africa : 20 years of constitutional democracy : original researchAuthor Wessel BentleySource: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –8 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2673More Less
It has been two decades since South Africa became a constitutional democracy. The transition of power in this country has not necessarily meant that the majority of South Africans have experienced a transformed life. The incessant experience of poverty, poor service delivery and lack of political will to facilitate change is leading to violent protest action. This article investigates the progression in the Methodist Church of Southern Africa's theological understanding of its role in being an agent of change in local communities. It does so by reflecting on the Church's place in the current political context, its programmes and recent initiatives in its mission-based focus.
Between the Scylla and the Charybdis : theological education in the 21st century in Africa : original researchAuthor Johan BuitendagSource: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –5 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2855More Less
The article reflects on the challenges of theological education in the 21st century and in Africa. Reputation, impact, success and funding have become the driving forces of the modern university. However, we are living in the 21st century and in Africa with a subsequent frame of reference that is holistic and faith-based. The article therefore argues for a multi- and transdisciplinary approach towards the nature of a university and recognition of the unique contribution theological education can contribute. Due to the inherently cooperative nature of theological scholarship, theological education could be able to avoid the extremes of the Scylla and the Charybdis, that is, fideism and secularisation, and therefore be able to survive at an academic institution. Both sectarianism and scientism should be avoided. Theological education in Africa needed to travel the same difficult road of theological faculties in Europe in the previous century.
Source: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –10 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2820More Less
Albertus (Albert) Stephanus Geyser (10 Feb. 1918 - 13 June 1985) was a South African cleric, scholar and anti-apartheid theologian. On 17 February 2014 his alma mater, the Faculty of Theology of the University of Pretoria, presented the first commemoration lecture in tribute to the legacy of A.S. Geyser. This article portrays the décor of this commemoration. The article addresses the need to recall his contributions by discussing his prestigious career as a young academic, his transformation into an opponent of apartheid, the opposition against and persecution of him and his protest against apartheid. It discusses Geyser's conviction that apartheid could not be justified on the basis of the Bible and theological grounds. His activism is rooted in his biblical thought. The article reflects on Geyser's view that the church could be a powerful presence in the state and world while not compromising its message and preaching of the gospel of peace and love.
Teologie as werklikheidsverstaan - anders dink, anders doen : aantekeninge oor die teologie van Johan Buitendag : original researchSource: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –14 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2823More Less
Theology as understanding reality - thinking differently, acting differently: Notes about the theology of Johan Buitendag.
The article investigates the theological contours delineated from the publications of the systematic theologian Johan Buitendag. His theology represents a relational integrity of ontology, epistemology and ethics. It can be characterised as an existential ecotheology. In the introduction this rhizome (epistemological metaphor borrowed from Giles Deleuze and Félix Guattari) existence in Buitendag's theology is discussed. The article consists of nine sections: the hermeneutical circle as introduction; the polemic attitude of Karl Barth with regard to a theologia naturalis; understanding the notion paradigm; being church as a relational event; engaged epistemology; existential theo-anthropology and ecotheology; existential ecclesiology; existential engagement; and an autobiographical reflection.
The HTS Teologiese Studies/Theological Studies 70 year anniversary volume - dedicated to Johan Buitendag : editorialAuthor Andries G. Van AardeSource: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –5 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2827More Less
Wanneer een twee word : 'n perspektief op resente gebeure in die Nederduitsch Hervormde Kerk van Afrika : original researchAuthor Wim A. DreyerSource: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –16 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2054More Less
When one becomes two: A perspective on recent events in the Netherdutch Reformed Church of Africa. On 28 July 2013 13 congregations of the Netherdutch Reformed Church of Africa (Nederduitsch Hervormde Kerk van Afrika) declared themselves independent and constituted as the 'Geloofsbond van Hervormde Gemeentes'. This contribution examines the recent historical background to this event as well as several contributing factors such as the role of the media, the role of organisations, differences in theology as well as ideological differences. The conclusion is reached that a tension-filled discourse between confessional and critical theology, linked to clear ideological views, were the main contributing factors to divisions in the church. The contribution concludes with a discussion of some implications of these events from the perspective of church polity.
Die retoriese analise van die Brief aan Filemon in die lig van Johannes Chrysostomus se homilieë oor dié brief : original researchAuthor D. Francois TolmieSource: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –8 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2686More Less
The rhetorical analysis of the Letter to Philemon in the light of John Chrysostom's homilies about this letter.
The study of Paul's Letter to Philemon benefitted from the renewed interest in the rhetorical analysis of New Testament writings in recent times, in the sense that a large number of rhetorical studies of the letter have been published. These rhetorical analyses of the letter have been done from various perspectives, but until now no one has systematically investigated the way in which John Chrysostom interpreted the letter rhetorically in his three 'Homilies on Philemon'. Accordingly, the study offers a detailed investigation of this issue. It is shown that John Chrysostom identified several important rhetorical aspects that have been neglected by modern scholars - aspects which could be used to enhance current interpretations of the rhetoric of the letter.
Ecology : its relative importance and absolute irrelevance for a Christian : a Kierkegaardian transversal space for the controversy on eco-theology : original researchSource: HTS : Theological Studies 70, pp 1 –8 (2014) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2719More Less
The controversy about the importance of eco-theology or creation spirituality seems to be in a deadlock. Those who support it and those who oppose it do not even seem to be able to communicate with one another. On the one hand, Celia Deane-Drummond, for example, writes in her Eco-theology (2008:x): 'I find it astonishing that courses on eco-theology do not exist in many university departments of theology and religious studies.' Matthew Fox desperately asks in his Creation spirituality (1991:xii): 'Need I list the [environmental] issues of our day that go virtually unattended to in our culture?' On the other hand, evangelical Christians are known for their ecological 'blind spot' (Davis 2000), until recently at least. Pentecostal proponents of the prosperity gospel preach a consumer-lifestyle for all Christians, which is not very eco-friendly (cf. Kroesbergen 2013). Even in more mainline Christianity we find, for example, the well-known theologian Robert Jenson who writes in his Systematic theology: Volume 2 (1999:113, n. 2): 'Recent waves of "creation spirituality" are simply apostasy to paganism. And it is such unguarded, even unargued judgement that is required of the church.' We find eco-theologians, who do not understand that not everyone agrees with them on the one hand, and opposing theologians, who do not even feel the need to argue against them on the other hand. What would be needed to re-open communication between those in favour of eco-theology or creation spirituality, and those opposed to it?