Scielo RSS <![CDATA[In die Skriflig ]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/rss.php?pid=2305-085320180002&lang=en vol. 52 num. 2 lang. en <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/img/en/fbpelogp.gif http://www.scielo.org.za <![CDATA[<b>Church discipline: A fair and just pastoral-ecclesiatical act? Is article 60.3 of the Church Order of the Dutch Reformed Church a spiritual offspring of the Church Order of Dordt?</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-08532018000200001&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Departing from the viewpoint that church discipline is spiritual in nature, article 60.3 of the Church Order of the Dutch Reformed Church states that it should be exercised in a fair and just pastoral-ecclesiatical way. In doing so, this Order should be obedient to the Word of God, the confessions of faith of this church, its church order and the normative character of the church as an institution of society. This requirement, in terms of the formulation of article 60.3, is investigated. In addition, article 60.3 is compared with the Church Order of Dordt to determine whether the former may be regarded as a spiritual offspring of the latter. It is concluded that article 60.3 is indeed scriptural, according to the confessions and determined by the character of the church. It is therefore also an offspring of the Church Order of Dordt. <![CDATA[<b>Impact amid absence: The Synod of Dordt and the French Huguenots</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-08532018000200002&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en This contribution investigates the reasons behind the absence of delegates from the French Reformed (Huguenot) churches at the Synod of Dordt, setting the reasons for their absence in the broader political and religious context of the times. I argue that the connections between the French Reformed church and the Synod of Dordt were significant both before and after the synod met, but that the Huguenots had a rather different project in mind (religious reconciliation among Reformed Protestants and even possibly between Reformed and Lutheran Christians) when they considered the possibility of an international gathering of Reformed theologians. Although the Huguenot delegates were not present at Dordt and therefore could not directly affect the course of the synod's meeting, their alternate vision for the meeting still persisted even via correspondence during the gathering. At the same time, the synod itself had an impact on the Huguenot church, given that the Canons of Dordt were ratified by the French national synods already by 1620. <![CDATA[<b>The Canons of Dordt: Inclusive or exclusive?</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-08532018000200003&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en This article starts with a historic background of the relevant circumstances which should be acknowledged to understand the reasons why a Synod of this stature was held at Dordrecht in 1618-1619. In view of the main agenda resulted from the Remonstrance formulated by the Remonstrants in 1610, most parts of the Synod were attended to discuss the Remonstrance which ended with the Remonstrants being suspended from the Synod. The question is also answered whether the Canons of Dordt are exclusive or inclusive. <![CDATA[<b>The Trinity in the Canons of Dordt?</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-08532018000200004&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en In this article the question regarding to the Trinity in the Canons of Dordt is specifically asked in the light of a broader structure of the Reformed orthodox doctrine of God in the early modern period (1500-1700). The first part of the article attempts to shed light on the Trinity in Reformed orthodoxy and, in this light, the second part will highlight an understanding of the inherent doctrine of the Trinity in the Canons of Dordt. <![CDATA[<b>Impact amid absence: The Synod of Dordt and the French Huguenots</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-08532018000200005&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en This contribution investigates the reasons behind the absence of delegates from the French Reformed (Huguenot) churches at the Synod of Dordt, setting the reasons for their absence in the broader political and religious context of the times. I argue that the connections between the French Reformed church and the Synod of Dordt were significant both before and after the synod met, but that the Huguenots had a rather different project in mind (religious reconciliation among Reformed Protestants and even possibly between Reformed and Lutheran Christians) when they considered the possibility of an international gathering of Reformed theologians. Although the Huguenot delegates were not present at Dordt and therefore could not directly affect the course of the synod's meeting, their alternate vision for the meeting still persisted even via correspondence during the gathering. At the same time, the synod itself had an impact on the Huguenot church, given that the Canons of Dordt were ratified by the French national synods already by 1620. <![CDATA[<b>No authority or domination: An exploratory study of the reception of an anti-hierarchical principle in Dutch reformed-type church orders</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-08532018000200006&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The Confessio Gallicana (1559) states: 'We believe that all true pastors, wherever they may be, have the same authority and equal power under one head, one only sovereign and universal bishop, Jesus Christ; and that consequently no Church shall claim any authority or dominion over any other' (Cochrane 2003:155). In this study I explore the reception of this article in the successive reformed church orders in the Netherlands, especially in those of the period up to and including the Synod of Dordrecht (1618-19) and in the recent one of the Protestant Church in the Netherlands (2004). I conclude that the principle behind the cited provision has been incorporated into the mentioned church orders, but with different wordings, for different purposes and in the context of different theological concepts. Secondly, I conclude that there is a direct link between this provision and the 77th article of the church order of The Hague (1586), albeit that its range in the latter one is larger. The wording as well as the direct context of the provisions in the Dortian church order is the same as in its predecessors of 1586. In this regard the Dortian church order does not represent any change. Finally, I conclude that the church order of the Protestant Church in the Netherlands continues an old tradition, though it gives the principle a new scope, a new content and a new shape. <![CDATA[<b>Are the Canons of Dordt a true reflection of Calvin's view of predestination?</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-08532018000200007&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en As the delegates to the Synod of Dordt were bound by oath to use only the Word of God and not human writings in deliberations about doctrine, in the documents of Dordt there are no references to Calvin as a source of specific ideas in the Canons. The approach of this article is thus to compare chapter I of the Canons on predestination with Calvin's views in his various writings on predestination. This comparison focuses on the main themes relating to predestination as taught in chapter I - the starting point of the discussion, double predestination, election, election in Christ, reprobation, the causes of election and reprobation, the infralapsarian emphasis, the purpose of election and reprobation, assurance of election, and election of infants who die. On the basis of this comparison, the conclusion is that the Canons reflect Calvin's views on some points relating to predestination and not on others. So, on this issue, the Canons are only a partial reflection of Calvin's views, and he could only have been a modest influence on the Canons. <![CDATA[<b>The composition of reformed church orders: A theological, reformed and juridical perspective</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-08532018000200008&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Many reformed church orders, which reflect the Dort Church Order of 1619, albeit revised, still apply its subdivision into these four chapters: firstly, offices (dienste); secondly, general assemblies (samekomste); thirdly, doctrine, sacraments and other ceremonies (leer, sakramente en seremonies); and fourthly, church discipline (kerklike tug). This article focuses on the composition of church orders. The research question is the following: How are reformed church orders composed and what it the ecclesiological or juridical rationale behind this composition? This article contains paragraphs on the composition and the ecclesiological legitimisation of the Dort Church Order of 1619 and its predecessors, the reformed churches in the East-Indies (Batavia), the Algemeen Reglement of 1816, the Reformed Church Order of 1951, the church order of the Protestant Church in the Netherlands of 2004, and the major shift from the perspective of canon law to reformed church polity. Reformed church orders contain both doctrinal and disciplinary regulations in relation to three notae ecclesiae of a reformed church. However, there is more at issue than the theological nature of the composition of the Dort Church Order and its successors, namely their relation to the Institutes of Justinian. <![CDATA[<b>Freedom of religion: From the Church Order of Dordt (1619) to South Africa (2018)</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-08532018000200009&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en This article is about freedom of religion as an integral part of the Reformation of the 16th century and how it was expressed in the Church Order of Dordt (1619) and later at the Cape of Good Hope under the rule of the Political Council. The article also traces the route of freedom of religion under the rule of the English and after 1910, under the rule of various political parties until the current situation (2018) with a Constitution that guarantees freedom of religion for every person in South Africa, and The South African Charter of Religious Rights and Freedoms. <![CDATA[<b>What can we learn from Dordrecht for a possible authentic Confessio Africana?</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-08532018000200010&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The year 2018 marks the 400th commemoration of the Synod of Dordt, the most important synod of reformed churches in the Post-Reformation era. The Synod was convened by the States General of the Netherlands after decades of serious conflict and unrest in the Dutch churches, over the Arminian heresy regarding the doctrine on predestination. The Synod also had an international character since it was also attended by theologians from churches all over Europe and England. The main purpose of the Synod was to seek a resolution of the Arminian controversy and formulate a judgement on the Remonstrance of 1610. After a wearisome process of evaluating the writings of the Remonstrants, and a thorough studying of Scripture, the Canons of Dordt was approved and signed by all the delegates. In the years to come it was recognised as a confessional standard together with the Belgic Confession and the Heidelberg Catechism. As far as a possible authentic Confessio Africana is concerned, efforts in the past to draft such a confession were not successful. We learn from Dordt (as well as the drafting of other reformed confessions through the ages) that a true reformed confession is born resulting from the judgement of the churches on a fundamental doctrinal issue. Such a confession must be recognised and accepted by churches internationally because it is in accordance with the Word of God. <![CDATA[<b>Barth on election and the Canons of Dort</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-08532018000200011&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en After the Second World War, a renewed interest in the doctrine of election became evident. Several influential and leading theologians published monographs on divine election. One reason for this was the publication of the second part of volume two of Karl Barth's Kirchliche Dogmatik during 1942. Barth regarded the doctrine of election as the heart of the gospel. Fifty years after Barth's death and in the year in which reformed churches all over the world commemorate the Synod of Dort (1618-1619), this contribution reflects on Barth's revisionist understanding of election and his critique of the Canons of Dort.