Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Acta Theologica]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/rss.php?pid=1015-875820190004&lang=en vol. 39 num. lang. en <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/img/en/fbpelogp.gif http://www.scielo.org.za <![CDATA[<b>Introduction</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582019000400001&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>In Discussion with Pieter Verster</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582019000400002&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Mission as Reconciliation</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582019000400003&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en For a long time, missiology operated in the paradigm of civilisation and good citizenship. Since the end of the 19th century, inculturation and social justice have replaced this paradigm. The current focus is on self-affirmation. In his work, Pieter Verster pleads for understanding mission as reconciliation, and this not so much as a variation on social justice, but as a fundamental new relation of God to human beings. Christology is the centre of his missiological paradigm. Renewal of humanity is only possible in the perspective of transcendence: God's coming in Christ and resurrection to eternal life. In this article, it is argued that it will be a great challenge for scholarly missiology and for the churches to accept this new paradigm, which involves a reconsideration of the basic paradigm of Christianity. <![CDATA[<b>Reconciliation as a Missional Paradigm for Post-1994 South Africa</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582019000400004&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The article aims to evaluate the church's role in reconciliation as a missional paradigm and attempts to find answers from biblical and theological perspectives. It discusses the issues of church, congregations, reconciliation, the Bible and people within the post-1994 South African context. There is a need to spell out the reasons for reconciliation as a paradigm for missiology in South Africa. The article addresses theological reflection, spiritual formation and empowerment, reconciliation as the praxis of the church, and faith-based reconciliation. The development of a five-point process for conflict helps in discussing the context. In developing congregations to be communities of forgiveness; being Christocentric; living in Shalom; espousing the missional approach; being open and essential communities, as well as exploring spiritual formation and empowerment will be vital for the reconciliation process. The article attempts to show how reconciliation, as the praxis for the church in South Africa, can go a considerable way to minister and meet the need of the present-day church and community. This attempt will be further supported by the development of a faith-based people and congregation to contribute to the reconciliation process. The following research questions are posed: In a country that is statistically over 75 per cent Christian, why are life, actions, behaviour, morality and integrity so far removed from the Christian scriptural principles of the Bible, as the rule book and guidance for life? Why does or is the ecclesiastical Christian life not informing and impacting on life and experience in South Africa? <![CDATA[<b>Present-day Mission Partnerships</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582019000400005&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The centre of gravity of the church and of mission-sending has shifted from the North and West to the South and East. Currently, as many full-time cross-cultural missionaries are sent and supported by churches in Asia, Africa and Latin America as those sent from Europe and North America. In this new reality, there is an urgent need to discover and create new patterns of missionary partnership among Christians worldwide. It is urgent that church leaders, mission executives, and mission practitioners talk together, analyse, critique, and articulate the possibilities and pitfalls of partnership in mission in the 21st century. This article reflects on three aspects of present-day mission partnership, namely the broad contexts of mission partnerships; issues related to the structures for mission partnerships, particularly the modality-sodality mission relationships, and some pitfalls of paternalism facing all those in mission partnerships. <![CDATA[<b>John Calvin on Social Challenges</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582019000400006&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en John Calvin's interpretation of Holy Scripture as the infallible Word of God dominated his approach to socio-economic, sociopolitical and human relation issues. This article endeavours to indicate that his 16th-century views have not lost their relevance for the current paradigm on social challenges. To him, theology was no mere theoretical or academic field; it always tended to become a way of living within the sphere of God's providence. He thus emphasised the stewardship of man in God's creation. Whatever affliction people experienced, be it caused by natural disasters or by human disrespect for society, Calvin felt it as profound grief, so that he urged the community to get involved where aid was required. His written legacy abounds in guidelines for dealing with various kinds of social and economic issues. His clear view and perspectives on the social challenges of his era provide more than enough to consider in the 21st century. <![CDATA[<b>Christianity and Social Transformation in Post-apartheid South Africa: From Prophetic Quietism to Signs of Prophetic Recovery</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582019000400007&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The history of prophetic witness against the system of apartheid is well recorded. Church leaders such as, among others, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Rev. Dr Beyers Naude, Dr Allan Boesak, Rev. Frank Chikane and Dr Brigilia Bam are well-known names in this context. Post-1994, the situation, as far as the prophetic involvement of the church in society is concerned, has changed dramatically, with the church withdrawing from the public arena. The article traces some of the reasons why this retreat of the church into the periphery has occurred in a post-1994 situation where inequality, unemployment and poverty still prevail. The article also examines attempts at reclaiming the prophetic voice in the public arena from different sections of the Christian faith. The conversation on both factors informing the retreat into the periphery and attempts at returning to the public arena is located in the quest for transformation. <![CDATA[<b>The Conundrum Facing Christian Traditional Leaders</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582019000400008&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Although Christianity was introduced to and embraced by Batswana over two centuries ago, some Batswana still hold dear to their traditions, customs and cultures, which, at times, are not in line with the Word of God. Volz (2008:112) concedes that, although European missionaries introduced Batswana to Christianity, they had hardly any control over how early Batswana converts perceived and adapted their teachings. In some instances, dikgosi¹,as traditional leaders, are still facing a serious conundrum of being a Christian, on the one hand, and a custodian of culture, on the other. This is in line with the view expressed by Amanze (2003:43) that many Christians, especially members of the African Independent Churches, live a strange life, with one foot rooted in the African traditional beliefs and the other in Christian beliefs and practices. Given the statement "For there is only one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus" (1 Tim. 2:5), the question is: Where does this place traditions, customs and culture? <![CDATA[<b><b>Karel Schoeman en die Leefwêreld van Vroeë Sendelinge in Suid-Afrika —'n Oorsig oor sy Sending-geskiedskrywing</b></b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582019000400009&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Karel Schoeman, the award-winning Afrikaans author, not only wrote several seminal novels (for which he received the highest Afrikaans literature prizes), but his contribution to research focusing on the 18th and early 19th century South African sociocultural history is also remarkable. He collected and put together an enormous volume of archival resources accessible to a large audience of interested readers and scholars alike. He especially concentrated on the history of missionaries and mission organisations; he wrote a long list of biographies, of which the most important ones were of women with some connection to the missionary endeavour. Schoeman's unique approach to historiography is making a significant contribution that is relevant to missionary history and theology as such. He retrieved often neglected but important voices from the past. Contrary to canonised, confessional and denominational church history, he opted to focus on missionaries (Black and White), slaves, women, and the historically marginalised. He wrote about their "lived faith" within the sociocultural contexts of their time. <![CDATA[<b><b>Karel Schoeman en die Leefwêreld van Vroeë Sendelinge in Suid-Afrika —'n Oorsig oor sy Sending-geskiedskrywing</b></b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582019000400009&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Karel Schoeman, the award-winning Afrikaans author, not only wrote several seminal novels (for which he received the highest Afrikaans literature prizes), but his contribution to research focusing on the 18th and early 19th century South African sociocultural history is also remarkable. He collected and put together an enormous volume of archival resources accessible to a large audience of interested readers and scholars alike. He especially concentrated on the history of missionaries and mission organisations; he wrote a long list of biographies, of which the most important ones were of women with some connection to the missionary endeavour. Schoeman's unique approach to historiography is making a significant contribution that is relevant to missionary history and theology as such. He retrieved often neglected but important voices from the past. Contrary to canonised, confessional and denominational church history, he opted to focus on missionaries (Black and White), slaves, women, and the historically marginalised. He wrote about their "lived faith" within the sociocultural contexts of their time. <![CDATA[<b>Isaiah 40:1-11. Yahweh as Comforter of the Traumatised</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582019000400010&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en This article aims to show that Yahweh acts as a comforter of the traumatised: the exiles in Babilon. Some of them are eager to return to Jerusalem although they know that the city was destroyed. The prologue of Isaiah 40 gives the wonderful message that Yahweh will comfort the exiles and the city of Jerusalem. The exiles may return to Jerusalem. Yahweh will accompany them. The city of Jerusalem will be rebuilt. Yahweh knows of their suffering. He will comfort them and provide strength, food and help. The comfort will help make the traumatic experience bearable. <![CDATA[<b>N.P. van Wyk Louw as Satirist</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582019000400011&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Critics usually try to discern the crucial tenets or themes in a major poet's work. This is also the case in the reception of the famous Afrikaans poet, N.P. van Wyk Louw's oeuvre, especially after the publication of Tristia (1962), often regarded as his magnum opus. In this article, the hypothesis is that many literary devices, which critics in the past have discerned in his work, all fall within the ambit of the satirical mode. The definition of satire proposed in this article is that satire is an implied or explicit attack on a satirical object, but also with the suggestion at least of an explicit satirical norm. In conclusion, two seminal poems by Van Wyk Louw that were, in the past, read as detached and reflective are interpreted as satirical, with reference to Speech Act Theory. <![CDATA[<b>N.P. van Wyk Louw as Satirist</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582019000400011&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Critics usually try to discern the crucial tenets or themes in a major poet's work. This is also the case in the reception of the famous Afrikaans poet, N.P. van Wyk Louw's oeuvre, especially after the publication of Tristia (1962), often regarded as his magnum opus. In this article, the hypothesis is that many literary devices, which critics in the past have discerned in his work, all fall within the ambit of the satirical mode. The definition of satire proposed in this article is that satire is an implied or explicit attack on a satirical object, but also with the suggestion at least of an explicit satirical norm. In conclusion, two seminal poems by Van Wyk Louw that were, in the past, read as detached and reflective are interpreted as satirical, with reference to Speech Act Theory. <![CDATA[<b>The Involvement of Church and State in Solemnising Marriages with a Reference to Three Reformed Church Orders</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582019000400012&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en There are two main reasons why the church, in general, became involved in the solemnising of marriages: the history of the church and, with it, especially the involvement of the Roman Catholic Church in the Middle Ages as the church of the Western World in this regard and theologically based principles. Following the history of the Reformed churches of The Netherlands and taking three church orders in the Dutch Reformed tradition into consideration, the Dutch Synod of Emden (1571) coined a lasting phrase on marriages. It proclaimed that the solemnising of marriages is partly the task of the church and partly that of the state. The church should be involved, because a marriage should be "in Christ" and according to the principles of the Bible. In His covenant of grace as a key element of being a church, God uses marriage and family as his points of departure to relate to people. As the institution of justice in society, the state should settle the legal aspects of marriage. On the latter, and if justice is needed in the case of a certain marriage, the state should have the final say.