HTS : Theological Studies - Volume 71, Issue 3, 2015
Volume 71, Issue 3, 2015
Source: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –8 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2937More Less
Using the Bible in Christian ethics is often not as simple as many would expect it to be. This is particularly the case for the use of the Old Testament. Part of the challenge is the complexity of grasping the customs and norms that are reflected in the Old Testament. They are often at odds with what is acceptable in contemporary thinking. In this article, we examine the difficulty of using the Old Testament in Christian ethics by using the narrative of Judah and Tamar in Genesis 38 as case study. We show that this particular text alerts us to the complex relationship between ethics and culture, not only in the world of the text, but also the world of the interpreter. Based on our analysis of the text we argue for its meta-ethical contribution to the practice of Christian ethics. We do not endeavour to resolve the perceived tension between the implied ethics of the text and that of contemporary interpreters, but view the unresolved tension as one of the text's key contributions to the practice of Christian ethics.
South African Old Testament criticism : squeezed between an ancient text and contemporary contexts : original researchAuthor Esias E. MeyerSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –7 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2876More Less
The article focuses on a debate initiated by Masenya and Ramantswana in 2012 about the lack of engagement with contemporary issues by South African Old Testament scholars. The article shows, with reference to the book of Leviticus, that ancient texts grew over time in order to become relevant for later generations. It then asks : if it is possible for Old Testament scholars to construct ancient examples of writers engaging with contemporary issues, why these same scholars are reluctant to make these texts relevant for today? The article then engages with the work of Farisani and describes strong points and weaknesses in the way in which he uses biblical texts to engage with contemporary debates before returning to the central question.
Die Wêreldbond van Gereformeerde Kerke, die Nederduitse Gereformeerde Kerk en 'n status confessionis teen die teologiese en morele regverdiging van apartheid : original researchAuthor Piet J. StraussSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –8 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2887More Less
The World Alliance of Reformed Churches, the Dutch Reformed Church and a status confessionis against the theological and moral justification of apartheid. In 1982 the World Alliance of Reformed Churches (WARC) announced a status confessionis against the theological and moral justification of apartheid. It expelled two member churches, the Dutch Reformed Church (DRC) and the Netherdutch Reformed Church of Africa (Nederduitsch Hervormde Kerk van Afrika) because of their known support of apartheid. This situation could only be changed if these two churches were to unequivocally reject apartheid on the basis of a status confessionis and show specified practical examples of this rejection. The meaning of a status confessionis as applied by the WARC is analysed. The reason why the WARC came to a status confessionis is historically investigated. The reaction of the DRC to this resolution and its readmittance as a member of the WARC is clarified. Attention is also given to the condition that accepting a status confessionis against the support of apartheid does not mean - for the WARC at least - that a new confession of faith should follow from this.
Author S.D. (Fanie) SnymanSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –6 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2854More Less
An investigation into some of the literary features of the book of Malachi reveals that each unit is structured in a twofold way. The macro-structure of the book also shows that the book can be divided into two parts. The results of this investigation strengthens the recent trend in the research of Malachi that it is unlikely that the book underwent an extensive redactional process over a period of time and that it is rather more likely that the book was written in a relatively short period of time.
Author Tanya Van WykSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –8 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3026More Less
This article attempts to draw the scope and content of contemporary Political Theology, based on a review of the 2013 publication titled, Political Theology: Contemporary challenges and future directions, edited by Francis Schüssler Fiorenza, Klaus Tanner and Michael Welker. The book is a collection of contributions which explore the contemporary content and potential future of the subject discipline. 'Political Theology' as critical theology and as a 'theology with its face towards the world' is committed to 'justice, peace and the integrity of creation' and is multifaceted. It represents a discipline with which theologians reflect on political-theological objectives across continents and paradigms. The article concludes with a brief investigation of the implications of insights offered in the book for the South African context (as part of the African continent).
Author Wim A. DreyerSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –7 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2873More Less
The early quest for liberty and political freedom in South Africa had been influenced by various factors, inter alia political sentiments which originated in Reformed, Huguenot and Patriotten political theory. An analysis of early political ideas indicates that religious sentiments had a significant influence on the development of political ideas. These sentiments and ideas all contributed to a passionate search for freedom, justice and democracy. The different strata of religious and political ideas manifest in a continuous and discontinuous way, giving the impression of fragmented and contorted ideas, but still recognisable in terms of their origins. This contribution is an attempt to identify some of the fragmented and contorted strata of ideas which influenced the early quest for political freedom and the rejection of British colonial rule in South Africa.
Author Petrus B. BoshoffSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –7 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2976More Less
The theological encyclopedia according to Rudolf Bultmann.
The purpose of this article is to present Bultmann's view on theology. The theme is relevant, since there is confusion as to what theology is or should be. Although his theological contribution remains under attack, Bultmann often complained of being misunderstood. Therefore it is necessary to read his work carefully and to reconsider his approach. The author started with themes Bultmann discussed in his lectures on theological encyclopaedia, published posthumously, and elaborates on them with reference to his other published work.
Source: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –9 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2912More Less
This article deals with the importance of a missional approach to the funeral and bereavement counselling process in congregational praxis in the midst of a context of secularisation. The creation of a missional perspective on the funeral and bereavement counselling could support the nature and praxis of a congregation in a secular society, especially if the congregation finds its relevance in the expression of the missio Dei. The basic theoretical research for missional ecclesiology, which is the systematic study directed toward greater knowledge of the fundamental aspects of missional ecclesiology (National Science Foundation 1953:38), is based on the premise that God is the source of all missions. The expression missio Dei means to join God in the mission he is already busy with in the world. As the one who sends, God the Father sends the Son, the Son sends the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit sends the church. The church only participates in the mission God is already busy with. It is a mission that uses both words and deeds and brings hope in the midst of tragedy. It is the hope of the kingdom of God and the incarnation of Christ that can already be experienced and expressed in the present. It is also the hope of the transformation of everything to form a new heaven and earth. Hope and mission can therefore not be separated. The concretisation of the expression of the kingdom of Christ in the world is hope, and a strong emphasis is therefore placed on mission as action in hope. Hope must be present where tragedy reigns, and the funeral and bereavement counselling can be used as a vehicle for this hope. Hope can then become an instrument of healing. The church can thus participate in God's mission in the midst of tragedy and make an impact on society by taking on a missional character of hope.
Author Pierre JacobsSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –8 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3022More Less
This article introduces South African churches to the reasons why elements of the late 19th and early 20th century Social Gospel movement encourages local churches to participate in their respective communities through social contribution. The article argues that the Social Gospellers understood Christian responsibility as an imperative of 'participatio Jesu' through social integration of living an ethos of oikoumen?. The history of the Social Gospel should be a relevant influence on mainline churches to understand the tension in the decision to participate or withdraw from social contribution today.
Source: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –8 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2992More Less
The relationship between preaching, music and liturgy.
In the Reformed liturgy in South Africa the sermon has traditionally been reserved a special place, taking precedence over the liturgy and music. In this article an argument is put forward for a better balance between preaching, liturgy and music in the Reformed liturgy in churches in South Africa. In order to do so, the South African Reformed liturgical context is briefly sketched and thereafter a theological and liturgical-historical argument is presented. Existing approaches with regard to the relationship between liturgy, music and preaching by some established scholars are discussed before the implications of the argument are examined in conclusion.
Author Malan NelSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –11 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2940More Less
Discipling youth may be one of the 'missing links' in developing missional thinking and missional local churches. This is even more so where churches suffer from a very obvious estrangement among generations. This article draws on the most recent literature on developing missional churches. The departure point is the argument of a the New Testament scholar, who refers to the description of Matthew 28:16-20 as the manifesto of the church - a manifesto that lies on the same level of value as the Shema of Israel: 'Listen, o Israel, the Lord our God is the only One.' This manifesto wants to tell us how new and differently we have to think on how people come into the body and how people will stay in the body. Picking up on three of my theological premises this article will work with a research question: What kind of church will make disciples in youth ministry? It will also work towards theological suggestions on how to make disciples in youth ministry in such a way that young disciples will make disciples.
Author Frans J. BoshoffSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –12 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2994More Less
Pax Romana as background of the Christian kerygma: The concept 'kingdom of God' is fundamental to the kerygma on the salvific meaning of Jesus Christ in New Testament times. This article aims to explore the raison d'être why this concept had been such an important element in the kerygma. It argues that the Pax Romana as the primary ideology of the Roman Empire played a significant role. The Pax Romana advocated harmony with the gods, and subsequent heavenly peace and global stability and security in the inhabited world. However, the kerygma replaced the Pax Romana as an ideology with the apocalyptic-eschatological concept 'kingdom of God'. According to apocalyptic eschatology, an end to the known world is expected. This end was considered to be a cataclysmic catastrophe awaiting in the future, albeit indeterminate to humankind. On the contrary, the church's kerygma proclaimed that the kingdom of God was already present. An element of Jewish apocalyptism, however, remained in the Christian religion - yet adjusted. That is, although the kingdom of God was regarded already present, the idea of a second coming of Christ as Redeemer was upheld. The article demonstrates that the Christian kerygma on the realised kingdom of God had its origins in the expectation of an utopia, as envisaged in the Pax Romana as ideology.
Author Anneke ViljoenSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –5 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2882More Less
Should Proverbs be read as prose or poetry? Considering the language craft is of essential significance for a hermeneutical enquiry into the biblical book of Proverbs. Five suppositions to support the presupposition that Proverbs is best read as poetry were considered.
Religie en globale bio-etiek : religieuse globale bio-etiek as voorloper tot 'n universele bio-etiek : original researchAuthor Riaan RheederSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –9 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2842More Less
Religion and global bioethics: Religious global bioethics as a precursor to a universal bioethics.
From a general public perspective, this article presumes that there is such a thing as a universal ethics; however this assumption does not decrease the challenges with regard to a 'global ethics' and 'bioethics'. The article discusses the views on global religious bioethics that were formulated in 1999. The article further considers these formulations as the forerunner of UNESCO's perspective on universal bioethics accepted in 2005. The article aims to argue that a global value system will enhance hope of peace and justice in today's global world. It argues that the absence of shared ethics will reinforce conflict between civilisations and worsen injustice.
Author Graham DuncanSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –10 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2857More Less
Celtic spirituality has a long and distinguished ancestry with its origins in pre-Christian times. It was inculturated among peoples in the far west of Europe, particularly in Ireland, Scotland and the north and south-west of England. It was different from Roman Christianity in distinct ways until the mid-7th century CE when Roman Christianity became the norm in Britain and Ireland. This spirituality has endured throughout the centuries and has experienced a revival from the latter half of the 20th century. From its inception, it has been closely linked to the environment. Over the years many key aspects of Celtic spirituality have been integrated in many religious traditions and shows similarities with and can contribute to a new ethical perspective on environmental issues. This article investigates the current environmental crisis from a faith perspective and attempts to draw lessons from Celtic traditions of spirituality in a scientific age.
Author Ian NellSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –8 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2934More Less
In a qualitative study recently carried out by the author amongst ministers in a Circuit of Dutch Reformed Congregations in a suburban context in the Western Cape, South Africa, respondents were asked whether they sensed a 'shift of view' concerning the role of leadership during the past 20 years in their respective congregations. The research results paint a picture of 'the end of leadership' at least in some form. One can also sense a 'shift of power' over the past two decades in these local congregations, indicating the changing dynamics of leadership. There seems to be a shift of power from the individual leader to the team, the group and the network. The aim of this paper is, firstly, to present some of the empirical results and then to reflect on the underlying reasons for this shift of power by giving a description of some broader philosophical and sociological perspectives influencing this state of affairs. This will be followed by a description of, and reflection on, theological developments on the Trinity and power that might help to understand the 'end of leadership' in some ways. The paper concludes with some thoughts on the role of power and leadership processes at work in local faith communities.
Complex leadership as a way forward for transformational missional leadership in a denominational structure : original researchAuthor C.J.P. (Nelus) NiemandtSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –9 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2951More Less
The research investigates the role of leadership in the transformation of denominational structures towards a missional ecclesiology, and focusses on the Highveld Synod of the Dutch Reformed Church. It describes the missional journey of the denomination, and interprets the transformation. The theory of 'complex leadership' in complex systems is applied to the investigation of the impact of leadership on a denominational structure. The theory identifies three mechanisms used by leaders as enablers in emergent, self-organisation systems: (1) Leaders disrupt existing patterns, (2) they encourage novelty, and (3) they act as sensemakers. These insights are applied as a tool to interpret the missional transformation of a denomination.
Author Tinyiko MalulekeSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –7 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2941More Less
For many reasons, reflecting on the life of Nelson Mandela is a precarious exercise. If Mandela is a symbol of the resilience of the human spirit under trying conditions, he is also a symbol that is appropriated in various ways - helpful and unhelpful - by various people. This article explores some of the unhelpful ways in which the name and person of Nelson Mandela is invoked. In particular, the article looks at the hagiographical orientation of several reflections on Mandela, cautioning how some of these may have an effect less noble than originally intended. Accordingly, the article asks: How much can the symbol of Mandela bear? How much more can Mandela give? The logic and rationale of Mandela hagiography is explored. Following his death, there has been an explosion of interest in the life and symbol that is Nelson Mandela. Mandela literature, including multi-media, is on the rise. If the symbol of Mandela is in danger of being 'cannibalised', there is also a danger of relegating Mandela to an ahistorical mythical figure. The solution lies in at least two area, namely, the increment of alternative Mandela narratives and the introduction of more critical Mandela narratives. In this regard, Mandela's own self-understanding as captured in his reflections about his life offer several clues which are explored in this article.
Die Apostoliese tradisie in die Vroeë Kerk se verstaan van Skrif en geloof - 'n kort hermeneutiese oorsig : original researchAuthor J.P. (Kobus) LabuschagneSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –11 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3017More Less
The Apostolic tradition in the Early Church's understanding of Scripture and faith - A brief hermeneutical overview.
This study is a concise hermeneutical overview of faith's various ways of understanding and of the different approaches towards Scripture interpretation in the history of the Early Church. The research manifests that historically the Apostolic Tradition of the Early Church, with its ecumenically accepted expression of faith in the Nicene Confession (originating from the Ecumenical Councils of Nicaea 325 and Constantinople 381), offers a foundation towards Church unity and at the same time provides us with a vital hermeneutical key for the Church's understanding of the scriptures and of her faith.
Author Nico VorsterSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –8 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2886More Less
The accusation is often levelled at Calvin that his doctrine on sin is inconsistent, contradictory, deterministic and culpable of making God the Author of sin. This article probes the validity of these accusations by analysing the consistency of John Calvin's doctrine on human sinfulness and by asking whether Calvin's understanding of sinful human nature is theologically valid. In doing so, the investigation keeps in mind the structural make-up of his theology, the rhetorical intent of his utterances and the devices he employs to harmonise possible inconsistencies in his theology. The finding is that characterisations of Calvin's doctrine on sin as deterministic, logically inconsistent and culpable of making God the Author of sin are not well-founded. Factors often overlooked are the dialectical nature of his theological reflection on sin, the chronological evolution of his thought on sin and the fact that he does not regard God and human beings as operating on the same ontological level, though this does not mean that God is not active in creaturely reality. When these factors are taken into account, Calvin's doctrine on sin proves to be fairly consistent and reconcilable with the rest of his theology.