Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Scriptura]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/rss.php?pid=2305-445X20200001&lang=pt vol. 119 num. 1 lang. pt <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/img/en/fbpelogp.gif http://www.scielo.org.za <![CDATA[<b>Religious intersections in African Christianity: the conversion dilemma among indigenous converts</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-445X2020000100001&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt The conversion of indigenous converts to Christianity is often perceived as a linear process, which marks individuals' rebirth and assumption of a new identity as they are assimilated into the Christian fold. This simplistic view, however, seems to undermine the intrinsic technicalities that are involved in the process of conversion, particularly for indigenous converts who already embrace a unique worldview, which is different from and sometimes contradictory to the conservative Christian outlook. This paper uses a qualitative research approach in the form of document analysis to critically explore the religious intersectionalities between Christianity and African Traditional Religion (ATR), and discusses some dilemmas that are inherent in the conversion of indigenous converts. It concludes by suggesting a paradigmatic model for re-viewing and reinterpreting the coming together of Christianity and African Traditional Religion in Africa south of the Sahara, particularly in South Africa. <![CDATA[<b>Religious intersections in African Christianity: the conversion dilemma among indigenous converts</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-445X2020000100001&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt The conversion of indigenous converts to Christianity is often perceived as a linear process, which marks individuals' rebirth and assumption of a new identity as they are assimilated into the Christian fold. This simplistic view, however, seems to undermine the intrinsic technicalities that are involved in the process of conversion, particularly for indigenous converts who already embrace a unique worldview, which is different from and sometimes contradictory to the conservative Christian outlook. This paper uses a qualitative research approach in the form of document analysis to critically explore the religious intersectionalities between Christianity and African Traditional Religion (ATR), and discusses some dilemmas that are inherent in the conversion of indigenous converts. It concludes by suggesting a paradigmatic model for re-viewing and reinterpreting the coming together of Christianity and African Traditional Religion in Africa south of the Sahara, particularly in South Africa. <![CDATA[<b>The reception and delivery of the oracle in Revelation 13:9-10</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-445X2020000100002&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt This study will examine how the oracle in Revelation 13:9-10 might have been regarded by the original audience as it was recited by the lector to each of the seven churches. The oral cultural context from which it originated decisively shaped the oracle's form and content. That oral cultural context will be considered in this analysis. The investigation will be conducted in three steps. First, this essay will argue that in the recitation of Revelation, the assemblies in Asia Minor would have perceived the following: the author's presence, his authority as a prophet, and the divine presence. Second, it will demonstrate that in hearing the oracle in Revelation 13:9-10, the congregants would have heard John's voice and accepted the prophet's words as caring and authoritative. Finally, the poetic nature of the oracle will be examined for its ability to foster a sense of the semantic divine presence. Consequently, when the prophecy was read aloud, it may have nurturedfeelings of awe, reverence, and respect for God in the listeners. <![CDATA[<b>The reception and delivery of the oracle in Revelation 13:9-10</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-445X2020000100002&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt This study will examine how the oracle in Revelation 13:9-10 might have been regarded by the original audience as it was recited by the lector to each of the seven churches. The oral cultural context from which it originated decisively shaped the oracle's form and content. That oral cultural context will be considered in this analysis. The investigation will be conducted in three steps. First, this essay will argue that in the recitation of Revelation, the assemblies in Asia Minor would have perceived the following: the author's presence, his authority as a prophet, and the divine presence. Second, it will demonstrate that in hearing the oracle in Revelation 13:9-10, the congregants would have heard John's voice and accepted the prophet's words as caring and authoritative. Finally, the poetic nature of the oracle will be examined for its ability to foster a sense of the semantic divine presence. Consequently, when the prophecy was read aloud, it may have nurturedfeelings of awe, reverence, and respect for God in the listeners. <![CDATA[<b>The purity myth: a feminist disability theology of women's sexuality and implications for pastoral care</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-445X2020000100003&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt The purity ideology is used to inform the cultural and religious constructions of women's sexuality. The ideology is further used to discriminate against the female body and disabled body, limiting the participation of both abled and disabled women in cultural and religious spaces. This article, written from a feminist disability theology perspective, highlights the emerging politics of sexuality on the ability-disability divide between women, and the purity myth ideology that further excludes women from cultural and religious spaces. It argues that the purity ideology is a myth that should unite women in resisting oppressive and patriarchal constructions of sexuality regardless of ability and disability. In conclusion, feminist disability theology is applied to discuss how sexuality that subjects women to the purity myth has negative implications for the pastoral care ministry. <![CDATA[<b>The four tasks of Christian ecotheology: revisiting the current debate</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-445X2020000100004&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt This contribution offers a description of the tasks of Christian ecotheology both from a de facto and from a de iure perspective. It suggests that this entails both a twofold critique and a twofold constructive task, i.e. an ecological critique of Christianity and a Christian critique of ecological destruction, a constructive contribution to Christian authenticity and on that basis to multi-disciplinary discourse on ecological concerns in the public sphere. This is unpacked in subsequent sections, holding these dual tasks together through the notion of an ecological reformation and the tension between vision and discernment. It is suggested that a constructive contribution to Christian authenticity is indeed theologically crucial, namely, to discern the movements of the Spirit, now amidst the advent of the Anthropocene. This contribution raises but does not address the theological question as to what God is up to in a time like this. <![CDATA[<b>In-text translation in the German and Yoruba Bibles: convergence or divergence?</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-445X2020000100005&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt The Bible is currently being retranslated into German and Yoruba. It is, however, noteworthy that the comparison between the German and Yoruba Bibles has enjoyed minimal attention from scholars of Bible translation. In view of this, the present paper examines the in-text translations in the four gospels of the New Testament of three German and three Yoruba versions of the Bible. The result shows that even though the German versions of the Bible have the same source text, there is a divergence in the transfer of in-text translation, while in the Yoruba versions, the transfer of in-text translation is less divergent despite the fact that these are retranslations of different English versions which were used as source texts. <![CDATA[<b>Interaction between ministers and members of the congregations in the DRCA FS <i>(NGKA VS)</i></b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-445X2020000100006&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt Recent studies on the DRCA FS indicate that there is a decrease in the positive interaction between ministers and the members of their congregations. This is manifested in the way in which the ministers describe the members of their congregations or the way in which congregation members describe the leadership of their ministers. This decrease in interaction between ministers and the members of their congregations is reflected in the increase in conflict situations characterised by disagreements, litigations and violence. This article raises the following research question: What are the dynamics of the interaction between ministers and members of the congregations in the DRCA FS? This article aims to analyse the interaction between ministers and members of the congregations in the DRCA FS. <![CDATA[<b>Performing psalms of lament: does God (off-stage) respond to the complainant's cry?</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-445X2020000100007&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt The underlying complaint in the psalms of lament is God's apparent silence or lack of intervention in a difficult situation. However, performing a psalm of lament suggests that this might not be the case. Performing any psalm requires one to identify the various speakers and addressees at different points. In the case of psalms of lament, the possibility arises of a representative of God's voice entering the dialogue. There are several clues within the text that suggest this interpretation, the main one being the dramatic change in mood evident in many lament psalms. Another one is comparison with lament psalms where the voice of God is cited. Also, the nature of poetry allows hearers to draw on their own experience to make sense of "gaps" in the text, and for different voices in literary text to speak without the use of speech introducers. Further clues emerge from a study of speech-act theory and the way that conversation-partners use language in relating to one another. If one discerns that the voice of God is represented in some form in lament psalms, this has important theological, hermeneutical, liturgical, and pastoral implications. A performance or liturgical reading of a lament psalm (sensitive to the different voices and indicating the possibility of a conversation taking place) can help hearers discern that a voice representing God does respond to the complainant's cry. This encourages contemporary sufferers as they identify with the lamenter and hear some response to help them in their situations. <![CDATA[<b>The enfolding of one organisation into another: a conflict of identity and a quest for meaning</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-445X2020000100008&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt This research investigates the enfolding of InnerCHANGE into Novo. These are two organisations with distinct identities that joined forces in 1985, and InnerCHANGE became one of the collectives under Novo. When they came together, they agreed to prioritise the evangelistic mandate of the church. They fleshed out their agreement into a hybrid model encompassing four areas of growth. These areas of growth are quantitative, qualitative, organic and incarnational. When these have been put to good use, they have contributed positively to their common purpose. However, this hybrid model seems to be a compromise that neither of these organisations fully adhere to. They do not focus equally on the four areas of growth. Sometimes an area of growth is portrayed as the best expression of their common purpose at the expense of others, which has stirred up some tensions in the organisations. This article reflects on the fruitfulness of the cohabitation of Novo and InnerCHANGE, and how this plays out on the local team level of InnerCHANGE South Africa. It also engages the existing tensions around the agreed upon four areas of growth to bring reconciliation and draw wisdom from it. The article is structured around how the cohabitation between Novo and InnerCHANGE started, cross-fertilisation, interaction with internal tensions and how the four areas of growth play out at a local InnerCHANGE level. It concludes that an intentional implementation of the four areas of growth by both Novo and InnerCHANGE could generate much wisdom and effectiveness in terms of their common purpose. <![CDATA[<b>Yahweh, the animal tamer: jungles, wild animals and Yahweh's sovereignty in the apocalyptic space of Daniel 7:1-28</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-445X2020000100009&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt Jewish Apocalyptic imagination often treats politics as a wild jungle with kings and empire builders as beasts and monsters. Polemically situated in this jungle-like rhetoric, human kings are animalized and intentionally implicated in the theological arrangements of this horrifying sub-human space. Considering the active deployment of this literary device in apocalyptic genre, the paper engages the spatiality of the wild space from the recent discourses of the poetics of spaces in general and the specific appropriations of these critical works to biblical studies. Consequently, the study presents the poetics of the wild space in Daniel 7:1-28 in the subtle portrait of Yahweh as the "Animal Tamer" who rules over this apocalyptic jungle. Reading the entire book of Daniel in this zoological mapping, the paper underscores the extended use of wild space in the rhetoric of this particular passage, especially the apocalyptic poetics of Yahweh as the sovereign Lord of the wild space. <![CDATA[<b>Characterisation and plot(s) in Genesis 16: a narrative-critical analysis</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-445X2020000100010&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt A narrative analysis of the plot(s) of Genesis 16 brings to the fore the motifs of barrenness, wilderness, and divine encounter, and indicates that the text presupposes God's choice of Isaac over Ishmael, which is more clearly emphasised in Genesis 17 and 21. Be that as it may, one of the major tasks facing a narrative-critical reader of Genesis 16 is to account for the author's special concentration on the characters of Hagar and Ishmael in a narrative that majorly concerns Abraham and his household. Does this focus suggest the divine election of Hagar and Ishmael? In this article, I shall demonstrate that the motifs of barrenness, wilderness, and divine encounter are narrative devices used by the narrator to underline, in advance, the "theology of separation" and God's compassion for, and salvation of, the afflicted. I shall also analyse how some factors in the narrative portray God's and the narrator's disapproval of Sarah's involvement of Hagar in her marital life. This shows that Abraham and Sarah tried to bring about the fulfilment of God's promise in their own way, which is contrary to the plan of YHWH, who had plans (of election) for Isaac. In other words, the focus on Hagar and Ishmael does not presuppose divine election of them, it rather prefigures, among other things, that the place of Ishmael would be in the wilderness. <![CDATA[<b>African Zionism and its contribution to African Christianity in South Africa</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-445X2020000100011&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt The paper highlights the historical development of African Zionism, with special reference to the four major messianic churches. Socio-political conditions and other factors contributed to the formation of African Zionism. Israel's nationalist theology of the temple and the John Alexander Dowie's Zion City concepts played a significant role in influencing the formation of African Zionism. The churches selected for the study are Zion Christian Church, Shembe's AmaNazaretha, International Pentecost Church, and St John's Apostolic Faith Mission. The focus is on the spiritual significance of the cultic centre as perceived by these church formations. The reasons for pilgrimages to the centre are elaborated on, and the contribution of these churches to African Christianity are highlighted. <![CDATA[<b>"The spirit": Left out and then reintroduced? A study of Colossians 3:16 and Ephesians 5:18-19 in the context of the authorship debate</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-445X2020000100012&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt This article aims to formulate a new hypothesis on the authorship debate concerning the disputed letters Colossians and Ephesians. It argues that the letters were co-written with Paul by his co-workers in order to make Paul's theology more acceptable to the congregations. Colossians omits controversial Pauline terms, but Ephesians corrects this and tries to reintroduce Pauline theology in a way that will build unity in the churches. A particular parallel text, the study of which sparked this research, is discussed to see if this hypothesis makes sense both of the similarities but also the differences between the two letters. <![CDATA[<b>Towards a new understading of the curse of Eve: female sexual pain in Genesis 3:16 and other ancient texts<a name="top_fn1"></a></b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2305-445X2020000100013&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt Painful sexual intercourse is the lived experience of many women, but little research has been done on the condition, and it is seldom discussed, either in private conversations or in the media. This appears to also have been true in ancient society, where few texts mention pain associated with sexual intercourse. Three ancient sources may reference or address the condition, these being Ramesseum Medical Papyrus IV, dating from the 13th Dynasty of Egypt during the 18th century BCE, Enki and Ninhursaga, a Sumerian mythical narrative, and Gen 3:16, the so-called Curse of Eve. This article will examine these three sources, analysing the translations of specific words and how these affect the understanding of the relevant passages. The paper will further investigate specifically the message which Gen 3:16 gives to women suffering from painful sexual intercourse, and how religious orthodoxy and a strict upbringing can be both a factor in the development of painful sexual intercourse, as well as an inhibiting factor in the treatment thereof