38 research outputs found

    Philipp Melanchthon

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    Philipp Melanchthon (1497–1560) was, with Martin Luther, the most influential reformer of the church during the 16th century. He was also a reformer of university education, especially theological studies, as well as the school system in Germany. He was responsible for a theological curriculum that included Greek, Hebrew, and philosophy. He, as a professor of Greek at the University of Wittenberg since 1518, was the author of the first generally accepted Protestant confession, known as the Confessio Augustana (1530). He also wrote the first Protestant commentaries on Paul’s letter to the Romans (1519), as well as the first Protestant handbook in systematic theology (1521). He was the main negotiator of the Protestant movement during the diets and religious discussions with the Roman Catholic Church. He is known as the ‘teacher of Germany and Europe’ and is respected as the father of the ecumenical movement. Yet, Melanchthon is not known to South Africans and especially Afrikaans-speaking people who, traditionally, have close links with the reformational tradition. There is not yet one single publication on Melanchthon in Afrikaans or by a South African scholar, making this book, therefore, the first by an Afrikaans-speaking scholar on Melanchthon

    Die barmhartige God, regverdiging en goeie werke deur Luther Ignatius

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    Voorwoord

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    Martin Luther se veelkantige verhouding tot die filosofie

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    Martin Luther lectured moral philosophy in Wittenberg. He was therefore a well-trained philosopher in the tradition of Willem Ockham. Throughout his academic career, he respected the important contribution of philosophy to life. Without philosophy, the world cannot function properly! He, however, rejected the idea that Aristotelian philosophy should be the guiding principle of theology. A philosophy that concentrates on what man could and should do, cannot be the cradle of the New Testament notion of justification without works. The God of the New Testament could therefore not be discovered by philosophical reflexion, but should rather be discovered by the preaching of the gospel. Theology, for Luther, is ‘science of conflict’ – it is in conflict with human logic and science. Theology offers a truth that is not scientifically intelligible. This truth is a matter for faith and not reason. By saying this, the importance of human reasoning is not denied

    Luther and Calvin on predestination: A comparison

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    Alexander Schweizer propagated the thesis that predestination is a central theme of Calvin’s theology and that later Calvinism had to defend his teaching as the distinguishing point between the Lutheran and reformed traditions. In this article it is shown that election is also an important element of Luther’s theology. The historic development of the two reformers’ thinking about election is presented. In spite of different nuances, the difference between the two are minimal. The main reason why the differences could be underplayed is because it is shown that Calvin’s thesis of ‘double predestination’ only forms one part of Calvin’s doctrinal thinking on this subject. Calvin has actually two sets of statements on predestination. When the unacceptable statements about ‘double predestination’ are not emphasised, but rather his early works and sermons, he and Luther share the same opinions on election in Christ through grace. Both of them understand election as the final word on justification

    Wolfhart Pannenberg se ekumeniese bydrae tot die debat oor kerkeenheid en die regverdigingsleer

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    Wolfhart Pannenberg would have been 90 years old in 2018. This article is a tribute to his excellent contribution to the ecumenical debate on church unity and the importance to reach an agreement on the doctrine of justification. The first step is to explain Pannenberg’s Lutheran understanding of church unity. Secondly, Pannenberg’s contribution to mobilise understanding for the ecumenical efforts in coming to an agreement on the doctrine of justification is discussed. His efforts in convincing theologians that one cannot work towards church unity while churches continue to condemn one another for having different views on doctrinal matters, receive special attention. Pannenberg’s effort to convince his colleagues that one should approach these sensitive ecumenical matters from the perspective of present-day historical-critical thinking is also mentioned. The article concludes with a judgement on his approach and his success in these matters

    God, vertroue en twyfel: Die vroue in die konsentrasiekampe tydens die Anglo-Boereoorlog

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    God, trust and doubt: The women in the concentration camps of the Anglo-Boer or South African War.Many books and articles have been written on the religious concept of the Afrikaner women who suffered in and survived the concentration camps during the Second Anglo-Boer War (1899–1902) in South Africa. It seems as if nothing has been written, though, on their image and understanding of God. This article is an attempt to close the gap in the research. These women’s understanding of God was mainly shaped by the Old Testament. They saw the two Boer republics as the new people of God, elected to exist in freedom, as independent states. To them, God was the God of justice and righteousness, who will defend his chosen people from oppression. The defeat on the battlefield caused a crisis of faith among many women. The war diary of Johanna Brandt (née Van Warmelo) offers useful information about the women’s faith and the shattering of their faith. In the second part of this article, Lutheran perspectives on the God of the Bible and man-made idols are provided as a Christian alternative to the faith of our forefathers. The Psalms and the prophets are also revisited to point out the presence of God, as well as the ethical consequences of the Jewish-Christian religion. Contribution: This is probably one of the first articles written on women’s understanding of God, women who were confined to the concentration camps during the Anglo-Boer War of 1899–1902. The main emphasis falls on Johanna Brandt (née Van Warmelo), who was an assistant nurse in the Irene camp, on the outskirts of Pretoria. She formulated her and the other women’s belief in the God of justice. Their understanding of God motivated them to endure the hardships and thousands of deaths in the camps

    The final judgment in African perspectives

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    Aspects of Reformed missiology in Africa: A contribution to a German Lutheran debate

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    This article is based on a paper delivered at a Lutheran Missionary Conference in Bleckmar, Germany. The request was to give an overview of the development and the state of Reformed missiology with special reference to South Africa in order to stimulate the missiological debate in the German-Lutheran church. Within the space of an hour, one could only concentrate on the struggles and concerns of one’s own church and its missionary institute. The border lines of the article are laid down by the major themes of Reformed theology and missiology, such as ‘the Word alone’, ‘conversion’, ‘the formation of congregations’, ‘the glory of God’ and ‘ongoing reformation’. Readers are introduced to a few Reformed missiologists who had a decisive influence on the development of Reformed missiology, such as Gisbertus Voetius, Hendrik Kraemer, Arnoldus van Ruler, Johannes Verkuyl and Jürgen Moltmann. The initial Lutheran audience was informed about the self-caused problems in the Reformed tradition. Both the audience and the readership are cautioned not to withdraw from the basic Lutheran theologoumena, such as the ‘two-kingdom theory’. The next decade will be a decisive period for the missionary efforts of the churches. Ecumenical solidarity and cooperation will be needed to work out new strategies whereby churches will be enabled to continue with missionary work on a new financial basis
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