n HTS : Theological Studies - Historiese teologie in 'n veranderende konteks : original research

Volume 72 Number 3
  • ISSN : 0259-9422
  • E-ISSN: 2072-8050



In this contribution, the author reflects on historical theology as theological discipline. After a short introduction to the precarious situation of church history as a theological discipline in South Africa and the question of faith and history, the contribution presents an analysis of Gerhard Ebeling's 1947 publication on church history in which he proposed that church history should be understood as a history of Biblical interpretation. Based on some of the principles Ebeling delineated, the author proposes that historical theology could be applied to five areas of research: prolegomena, history of the church, history of missions, history of theology and church polity. The point is made that historical theology, when properly structured and presented, could play a major role in enriching the theological and ecclesial conversation and in assisting the church in the process of reformation and transformation.

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