HTS : Theological Studies - Volume 71, Issue 3, 2015
Volume 71, Issue 3, 2015
Author Darryl WooldridgeSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –8 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2997More Less
Although the present article stands alone, it is a continuation of 'Living in the not-yet' (published in vol. 71, issue 1 of HTS). Both articles are derivatives of a larger study that discusses God as the centre of an often inarticulate and inchoate but innate human desire and pursuit to enjoy and reflect the divine image (imago Dei) in which every human being was created. The current article sets forth foundational considerations and speaks to the in-effaceable drive within humans to find God. It is a reciprocated drive - a response to God who first sought and continues to seek humans - a correlate and concomitant seeking in response to God. Although surely not the final word, this article discusses God as spirit and spiritual, by whom human beings have been created as imago Dei or God's self-address,showing God's heart as toward his creation, and humans most especially. Also discussed here is that humans are destined to join the perichoretic relationship that God has enjoyed from eternity. Moreover, in his ascension and glory, Jesus sends the Spirit of adoption into creation so that human creation might enter this same perichoretic relationship with God.
The missional renaissance : Its impact on churches in South Africa, ecumenical organisations, and the development of local congregations : original researchAuthor Jerry PillaySource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –6 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3065More Less
This article focuses on three matters pertaining to the conversation of missional churches. Firstly, it looks at the impact of missional awareness in South Africa and Africa. Here the article explores what is meant by missional congregations in the South African context. Secondly it looks at the ecumenical understanding and development of the missional church and how this has started to shape ecumenical organisations and, thirdly it concludes with some suggestions of how missional congregations and denominations can be developed. In this final section the article offers some strategic principles for developing missional churches.
Source: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –9 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2922More Less
The current phenomenon of Namibian African Independent Churches (NAICs) draws attention from various people in civil society in Namibia. Although the ministries of NAICs are engaged with activities which are unusual for Christian churches, such as healing the people, fighting against evil spirits and power, performing certain rituals, prophesying and leading the worship services with African Traditional Religion (ATR) as a frame of reference in 21st century, they do have a very big influence on various aspects of society in Namibia, which cannot be ignored. This is because those activities are familiar to the everyday lives of Africans and in touch with their culture. With regards to this, this article focuses on the causes of integration or harmony between the Herero culture and the NAICs.
Die oor-en-weer beroep van predikante tussen die Nederduitse Gereformeerde Kerk en die Nederduitsch Hervormde Kerk van Afrika : 1862-1917 : original researchAuthor Flip Du ToitSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –8 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3060More Less
The ongoing appointment of ministers between the Dutch Reformed Church and the Netherdutch Reformed Church of Africa: 1862-1917. This article highlights the situation prior to the establishment of the theological training of the Netherdutch Reformed Church of Africa (NDRCA). The training of ministers of the Dutch Reformed Church (DRC) started in 1859 with the establishment of the Theological Seminary at Stellenbosch. Since 1862 three churches operated in the then Transvaal (South African Republic). Many ministers of the DRC were called to serve in the NDRCA. The most notable were the Rev D.P. Ackerman and the Rev H.S. Bosman. They were called before the origin of the united church (of the NDRCA and the DRC) that existed between 1885 and 1892. After the split in 1892, they (as well as manyothers) continued as ministers in the DRC. The first lecturer of the NDRCA was called in 1917 -also a minister that was previously from the DRC. The calling of his successor sparked a major row. The NDRCA congregation of Pretoria called another minister from the DRC - the Rev H.D. van Broekhuizen. This eventually led to a special meeting of the General Assembly of the NDRCA in 1917 where his calling was eventually approved.
Author I.W.C. (Natie) Van WykSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –8 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3070More Less
Martin Luther and doing theology in the future. The Netherdutch Reformed Church of Africa prides itself for the fact that she has always appreciated the German-Lutheran tradition. The Reformed Theological College has for 15 years contributed to the appreciation of this tradition. This article wants to encourage the new leadership to keep this legacy alive. The main aspects of Luther's theology are explained. These aspects are: prayer (oratio), meditation (meditatio), constitation (tentatio), grace of the Spirit (gratia Spiritus), exegesis (sedulalectio), and the use of other sciences in understanding the Bible (bonarum atrium cognitia). Attention is also given to the subject-matter of Theology as well as the notion of humbleness.
Die Dordtse Leerreëls : 'n Grammatika van geloofstaal gebore uit die nasie-staat-ideologie : original researchAuthor Tanya Van WykSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –11 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3051More Less
The grammar of faith language in the Canons of Dordt as a result of the nation-state ideology. This article aims to decipher the spirit of the notion 'predestination' codified in the Canons of Dordt. It reconsiders the relevance of these dogmatic propositions about predestination as a grammar of the faith language which originated in a very specific context, namely the political concerns and the religious convictions held in the uniting Dutch provinces as a nation-state. In this context Calvin's views about predestination became instrumental to the establishment of an upcoming nationalistic ideology, based on different interpretations and perceptions of Calvin's theology. Within the context of the Protestant Dutch resistance against the Roman- Catholic Spanish-Habsburg hegemony, the Canons were formulated during the Synod of Dordrecht in 1618-1619 as a Calvinistic movement against the Remonstrants who were stigmatised as collaborators of the Spanish-Habsburg reign over the Netherlands. This article demonstrates that different receptions of Dordt heighten the dogmatic gap between the so called liberal modernism of the Remonstrants and a strict confessionalism of neo-Calvinism which has influenced the present-day understanding of the Canons of Dordt. It is argued that the grammar of the Canons of Dordt needs to be understood against this background and the meaning of the faith language it reflects, interpreted accordingly.
Author Johannes Van OortSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –9 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3059More Less
John Calvin (1509-1564) started his career as a thoroughly trained humanist who possessed, in addition, a thorough knowledge of the Fathers of the Church. This article provides an overview of this particular knowledge. It also focuses on the use Calvin made of the patristic argument in both his instructive and apologetic writings. Some evident cases of Calvin's misuse of the patres are discussed as well. It is concluded that Calvin's special patristic knowledge gave his theology its special hallmark and still links authentic Calvinism with the church's catholic tradition through the ages.
'Ecclesia reformata semper reformanda' church renewal from a reformed perspective : original researchAuthor Leo J. KoffemanSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –5 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2875More Less
With a view to the theme of church renewal, this article explores the role of a well-known and popular phrase in the Reformed tradition within Protestantism, that is, ecclesia reformata semper reformanda ['the reformed church should always be reformed']. Is this a helpful slogan when considering the possibilities and the limitations of church renewal? Firstly, the historical background of this phrase is described: it is rooted in the Dutch Reformed tradition, and only in the 20th century it was widely recognised in Reformed circles. Against this background the hermeneutical problem, linked with the principle of sola Scriptura, is presented, and put into an ecumenical ecclesiological perspective: the church is grounded in the gospel. Finally, the article focuses on church polity as an important field of renewal, taking into account Karl Barth's interpretation of this phrase. From this perspective, a balanced and ecumenical approach of church renewal is possible.
Die inkarnering van die missio Dei as praktykmodel vir die Nederduitsch Hervormde Kerk van Afrika : original researchAuthor J. Christo Van der MerweSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –16 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3066More Less
The incarnation of the missio Dei practice model for the Dutch Reformed Church of Africa.The decline of the church in the West is of great concern to many today. The Netherdutch Reformed Church of Africa (NRCA), experiences the same tendency. We are living in a time when survival is on the mind of most mainline congregations and denominations. The question is what shall we do to turn this situation around? The answer is to be found in the rediscovery of what it means for the church to be missional. The knowledge about how the early church functioned helps us to rediscover the character of early Christian mission, much of what is drawn together in the concept of incarnational mission. This article examines incarnational mission as the understanding and practise of Christian witness that is rooted in and shaped by the life, ministry, suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus. Understanding mission incarnationally in this manner is an integrative way to approach the church's missionary vocation and to avoid the typical Western reduction of mission to one of the many programms of the church. The article, by exploring the meaning of incarnational mission, endeavours to be both constructive with regard to the biblical and theological understanding of the message, and polemical with regard to the context and history of mission, especially in the Western tradition. This article follows Darrell Guder in arguing that the historical 'happenedness' of Jesus' life both enables and defines Christian witness. In exploring the missional significance of the incarnation, the article tries to avoid any dilution of the centrality of the incarnation event.
Author Willem OliverSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –12 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2929More Less
The aim of this article is to investigate Romans 10:5-13 and specifically the impact of the chiasm chiasmus) in Romans 10:9-10 on this sub-pericope. In the chiasm Paul makes the following statement(s):
A If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord
B and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead,
C you will be saved.
B For with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness,
A and with the mouth/he confesses, resulting in salvation. What gives the chiasm existential value here is the fact that this is the only passage in which Paul uses confess with your mouth as a condition for salvation. The sub-pericope will be discussed against the background of the introduction to the letter (Rm 1:16-17) as well as Romans 3:21-31.
The role of urban religion in seeking peace beyond the mere absence of community conflict : a reading of Ephesians 2:11-22, with the homeless in the City of Tshwane : original researchAuthor Reginald W. NelSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –8 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3128More Less
Urban religion, often visible in the work of faith-based organisations which consciously aim at unshackling the debilitating realities of urban marginalised communities, needs to be consciously inclusive in all its endeavours. In particular, this is crucial for actions such as those of the Tshwane Leadership Foundation that consciously seeks the peace of the city beyond the mere absence of conflict. This inclusivity requires a sensitive, creative, but also mutually transformative dialogue. This article aims at bringing into dialogue what biblical scholar Gerald West, in his proposal for contextual Bible Study, calls 'trained' readers of the Bible with what he calls 'ordinary' readers, who are homeless in the City of Tshwane. This methodology leads to a mutually transformative encounter in the common search for peace but also to appreciating the calling of urban religious communities in South Africa. It aims to make a contribution towards an inclusive and mutually transformative dialogue in order to contribute to the quest of urban religious communities to unshackle the marginalisation, whether it be in their consciousness or their environment.
Author Eugene BaronSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –7 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3085More Less
It is without doubt that the marginalised and destitute, such as homeless people, need all the help they can get to un-shackle them from poverty-stricken circumstances. Yet the reverse side of this is that marginalised, homeless people can become too dependent on such interventions, without taking responsibility for their future outcomes and consequences. The article reports on a contextual Bible study that was conducted with the homeless people in the city of Tshwane, specifically how they responded to the Lord's Prayer in Matthew 6 : 9-13. Bringing their responses in conversation with the voices of theologians, the themes emerging from the encounter are discussed. Bonhoeffer's theory of a responsible life is used as a theoretical framework. The author suggests that the homeless people as well as other relevant role players should take responsibility for the occurrence of homelessness in the city of Tshwane, South Africa, and offer solutions so as to eradicate this phenomenon in the future.
African traditional widowhood rites and their benefits and/or detrimental effects on widows in a context of African Christianity : original researchAuthor Matsobane ManalaSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –9 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2913More Less
Traditional Africans teach ubuntu principles of communality, mutual respect, caring and so forth, but they do not walk the talk with regard to the treatment of widows. In the footsteps of Jesus of Nazareth, Christian communities preach unconditional love, especially for the poor, marginalised and vulnerable. Implementation is, however, grossly lacking in respect of the treatment of widows. There is thus an apparent deliberate uncaring, disrespectful, discriminatory, impolite and unjust treatment of widows in African communities in spite of the ubuntu values and Christian teaching that emphasise love and caring, especially towards the grieving and thus vulnerable widows. Widows seem to be neglected and even oppressed in our time. The aim of this research is to critically examine African traditional widowhood rites and practices with special reference to the comfort or pain to which they subject African widows. The research further aims to examine the behaviour of some African Christians belonging to three congregations of one mainline church to determine whether their treatment of widows resonates with Jesus' teaching regarding the requisite care of widows. The issue of widowhood in Africa, in terms of the apparent plight of these bereaved and grieving women, needs to be urgently addressed for change in the 21st century. A critical literature study of relevant sources and a newspaper article will be used for this research. My personal experiences and continuing observation as an insider will also inform the research in useful ways.
Author Robert JonesSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –7 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3087More Less
Dietrich Bonhoeffer: A life in the footsteps of Christ. The life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer was a life devoted to the following of Jesus Christ. This article aims to contextualise Bonhoeffer's thoughts concerning discipleship against the background of Nazi Germany where he chose to stay in the years leading up to and during World War II. It is argued that the circumstances under which he lived and worked gave impetus to his understanding of discipleship, preventing this understanding of discipleship from being only abstract thoughts. A few remarks will be made about Bonhoeffer's thoughts on discipleship, which will then be read against the background of Jesus' call to discipleship in Mark 8:34.
Glas in beeld - beeld in glas. Verkondiging in fragment en fragmente van verkondiging ... : original researchSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –8 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3044More Less
Glass in the image - image in glass. Preaching in fragments and fragments of preaching ...The view that the sermon is an 'open work of art', promoted the awareness that the 'meaning' of a sermon is not fixed, but that possibilities are presented for the listeners to 'assign meaning'. 'Assigning meaning' does not mean something fully ad libitum: 'meaning' is formed within the guidelines of the text from which a sermon stems. Visual works of art could also be based on Biblical texts or stories, analysed and interpreted by the artist. The artist could mould the encounter with the Biblical text into various forms of art, proclaiming the gospel in ways similar to that of a spoken sermon: a work of art could present possibilities for assigning meaning related to faith. In this article the new stained glass windows, symbolically depicting the Liturgical Year, in a Dutch Reformed church in Pretoria, are discussed with a view to the possibilities they present to form part of experience-based religious education in 'bringing home' stories from the Bible and aspects of the Liturgical Year. Also asked is how they could function as visual 'sermons', speaking and communicating the 'Word of God' to the people inside the church, as well as to people on the outside.
Author Hermen KroesbergenSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –9 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3103More Less
This article investigates how we should understand the prayer 'But thy will not mine be done', using Wittgenstein's ordinary language approach. The later Wittgenstein argued that philosophy's task is to assemble reminders of how language is used in daily life for a particular purpose. This approach offers a way to understand how, despite what theologians have argued, 'Thy will be done' is neither making prayer useless, nor is it fundamental to all petitionary prayers. Firstly, the framework and method of Wittgenstein's ordinary language will be explained. Secondly, reminders will be assembled for the purpose of showing that the prayer 'Thy will be done' does not need to make praying useless. Thirdly, the appropriate reminders to refute the statement that 'Thy will be done' is fundamental to all petitionary prayers will be presented. And, finally, these two sets of reminders will be connected to one another to provide a more truthful understanding of the prayer 'Thy will be done'.
'Elkaar zijn wij gegeven tot kleur en samenklank ...' Die rol van sang in die vorming en opbou van die geloofsgemeenskap : original researchSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –7 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3036More Less
The role of singing in the formation and building up of the community of faith. Faith is communicated through participation in various actions and rituals in a dynamic process of socialising into the Christian community. Worship is the prime locus for growing into the community of faith. The singing of hymns in worship is important for people to participate in the faith, to socialise into the Christian community and to strengthen the identity of the faith community. Flowing from worship and back, singing and making music, as gifts of the Holy Spirit, are relevant in all activities of the church : to celebrate, to proclaim the gospel, to teach the faith, to comfort and support people pastorally, to open up the opportunity for participation, to give space for communication, to reach out, to bring people together, to form community and foster koinonia - and in doing so, to contribute in building up the community of faith. The community of faith is sung into being. Making music and singing together therefore need to be a part of the encompassing program of a congregation and a church. Ministers need a thorough liturgical-hymnological training as a sound theological base for working with others in actively building up the community of faith through music.
Malachi's concept of a Torah-compliant community (Ml 3:22 [MT]) and its associated implications : original researchSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –9 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2990More Less
This article focuses on Malachi's distinctive claims that guarantee a well-ordered community, namely the validity and feasibility of a Torah-compliant community. Since Torah compliance is a fundamental core of Israel's life, in the book of Malachi, Yahweh's Torah functions as the reliable and invariable authority for the community well-being as a whole. Community well-being as pictured by Malachi is created not only by Yahweh but also as the consequent contemplation and action of community. Malachi notes clearly that it is the sins of the community as a whole that renders it inconceivable that Yahweh's blessings should attend to them as they are now, and Malachi demands certain definite and substantial actions as preconditions to the manifestation of the desired expectations. To him the secret of creating and maintaining a healthy, viable community and living as people in covenant relationship with Yahweh, is by 'remembering' (upholding and practicing) Yahweh's Torah. Accordingly, Malachi enjoined his audience to remember the Torah of Moses, which constitutes the fundamental dimensions of their relationship with Yahweh. This article is thus an attempt to understand Malachi's concept of a Torah-compliant community and its associated blessings of happiness and shalom.
The challenge of consciousness with special reference to the exclusive disjunction : original researchAuthor Alex AntonitesSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –11 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.3041More Less
The theory of evolution makes sense of the emergence of consciousness. Reduction is not wrong as such, but must not be totalised. The fact that we are star stuff does not preclude the novelty of consciousness. Materialism is naturalism, but naturalism need not be materialism. Neural pathways are relevant but are not the total picture. The central thesis is about David Chalmers's philosophy being based on an exclusive disjunction. An inclusive disjunction is, when explained, more appropriate. Functionalism is appropriate. Thomas Nagel's philosophy on first person ontology can still be maintained. Quantum and complexity theories' hypothesis on consciousness is more compatible with freedom of decision than classical theories.
The mining-induced displacement and resettlement : the church as a leaven and ecclesiology in context's response : original researchAuthor K. Thomas ResaneSource: HTS : Theological Studies 71, pp 1 –8 (2015) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2967More Less
Natural resources, especially minerals from the earth, are to be protected by humanity. The church, which acts as leaven in the world is called to rise and address the unfriendly mining activities called mining-induced displacement and resettlement (MIDR). The general theory of interpretation of creation account calls for human stewardship in the world. Humans must view themselves as partners with God in preserving and sustaining the cosmos. The communities had suffered negative socio-economic imbalances. The ekklesia in this cosmic chaos is called upon to fulfil four major functions, namely identity, integration, policy, and management as a way of intervention in communities that are victims of these mining activities. This response, ecclesiology in context, is the combination of theological and social-scientific approaches to the development of practical models and strategies for the church's interaction with modern society and its challenges.