Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Stellenbosch Theological Journal]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/rss.php?pid=2413-946720180002&lang=en vol. 4 num. 2 lang. en <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/img/en/fbpelogp.gif http://www.scielo.org.za <![CDATA[<b>Editorial</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200001&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>The power of place: Trauma recovery and memorialization</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200002&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en In this paper, places of trauma, physical locations that reflect the Celtic spiritual concept of "thin places," simultaneously represent real life events, possess symbolic meaning, and become places for active, engaged social activity related to memorialization. I explore how these places create a potential space for working through trauma, drawing on Judith Herman's fundamental stages of recovery which she articulates as "establishing safety, reconstructing the trauma story, and restoring the connection between survivors and their communities."1 I argue that memorial museums attending to trauma can guide the process of working through suffering to growth and transformation, thus benefiting witnesses, survivors and family members, and employees who immerse themselves in the stories they memorialize in order to facilitate empathy and emotional availability to visitors of all types. This community commemorating communal trauma illustrates the Ricoeurean imperative - to remember, we need the other. <![CDATA[<b>Difficult tolerance: A Ricoeurian account and some practical theological reflections</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200003&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The aim of this article is to present Ricoeur's view on tolerance, and to reflect on some implications of his view for practical theology in South Africa. I start with a very brief introduction of tolerance as a key principle of liberal democracy and refer to the political use of tolerance in the transition to a democratic South Africa. After clarifying the aims and location of this article, I present Ricoeur's view on tolerance as an ongoing and challenging task for a capable subject. The last section is a brief reflection on some implications of Ricoeur's view of difficult tolerance for practical theology as an academic discipline in (South) Africa. "Tolerance is a tricky subject: too easy or too difficult" (Ricoeur 1996b:1) <![CDATA[<b><i>In limine primo: </i>The difficulty of reality in Paul Ricoeur and JM Coetzee</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200004&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The aim of this article is to present Ricoeur's view on tolerance, and to reflect on some implications of his view for practical theology in South Africa. I start with a very brief introduction of tolerance as a key principle of liberal democracy and refer to the political use of tolerance in the transition to a democratic South Africa. After clarifying the aims and location of this article, I present Ricoeur's view on tolerance as an ongoing and challenging task for a capable subject. The last section is a brief reflection on some implications of Ricoeur's view of difficult tolerance for practical theology as an academic discipline in (South) Africa. "Tolerance is a tricky subject: too easy or too difficult" (Ricoeur 1996b:1) <![CDATA[<b>Translation and a politics of forgiveness in South Africa? What black Christians believe, and white Christians do not seem to understand</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200005&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Why would white South Africans want to be forgiven? Is it in order to secure their future, or to escape from their past? Why is it that some black South Africans find forgiveness to be impossible in the current social and political reality? Forgiveness, as a theological and social discourse in South Africa, is deeply contested. This research shows that black and white South Africans understand notions, and processes of forgiveness in very different ways. This is a significant problem that is compounded by the legacy of ongoing structural injustice as a result of Apartheid. Un-reconciled persons in South Africa seldom have contact with each other since the apartheid system separated persons racially, according to economic class and geographically. In at least one sense this makes a shared understanding of, and approach to, forgiveness impossible. To some extent, South Africans do not truly encounter one another in meaningful engagement, or in spaces of shared meaning. In other words, there is both a hermeneutic and a social barrier to forgiveness in South Africa. Paul Ricoeur's notion of translation can help to engage the complexities that exist in language and the very nature of the difference between the self and the other in what is termed a "politics of forgiveness". <![CDATA[<b>Still searching for the pineal gland? Reading the Ricoeur-Changeux debate in terms of Meillassoux's critique of correlationism</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200006&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The spectacular advance in neurobiology and neuroscience in general ensures that the question of the relation between the brain and the mind remains actual. The dialogue between philosopher Paul Ricoeur and neuro-biologist Jean-Pierre Changeux that took place around 1998 remains an important contribution in this regard, primarily due to the interdisciplinary character of the conversation. This article attempts an interpretation of both Ricoeur's and Changeux's positions in their dialogue using the interpretive lens provided by Quentin Meillassoux's notion of correlationism. It is argued that such an interpretation highlights the similarities between Ricoeur's and Changeux's positions that might not otherwise be apparent, and also calls for a broadening of the terms of reference of the dialogue beyond those accepted by both Ricoeur and Changeux. The article subsequently investigates what a broadening of the terms of reference of the approach to the mind-brain problem might entail in terms of Meillassoux's anti-correlationism, but rejects this approach in favour of what might be called hyper-correlationism. <![CDATA[<b>Ricoeur in South Africa. Some remarks on his impact beyond philosophy</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200007&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The work of Paul Ricoeur is of much wider significance than just for the field of philosophy. This contribution discusses the impact of his ideas on developments in South Africa in three areas beyond philosophy: discourse analysis, concepts of selfhood, and the role of memory in social transformation. His dynamic understanding of communication helped to liberate discourse analysis in South Africa from an a-historical approach by focusing on the role of the reader, the context of reception and the transformative power of the text. His innovative work on the relationship between the self and the other has the potential to lead to a more inclusive understanding of being human together and to an enriched and expanded concept of identity. His extensive work on memory, history and forgetting can provide the basis to unlock the future potential of memory and for a memory liberated from being defined and held ransom by the past. <![CDATA[<b>Speaking from above and below -The Gospel of John as metaphorical and narrative reference to a distant reality</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200008&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The one who is from the earth belongs to the earth and speaks from the earth (Jn 3:31). How can one speak from the earth and at the same time about heavenly things? The Fourth Gospel (FG) creates a tension between these two realms of perception and cognition. To reach beyond or above the earth we have to transcend time and space, our individual context and limited visual horizon. To overcome the obstacle of confined space we can rely on metaphors since their key faculty is to transport (μεταφέρω). To transcend the limitations of time we can recruit the genre of narration. These two modes of references to a reality that is located and dated beyond our realms are at work in the FG. With Ricoeur's theoretical assistance, these features of the FG are highlighted as the prerequisite for its synthesis of the heterogeneous: above and below, light and darkness, spirit and flesh. <![CDATA[<b>Paul Ricoeur: Philosophy, theology and happiness</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200009&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Philosophy and theology have diverse and often opposite understandings of happiness. Both offer unique and valuable insights into happiness, but the concept of happiness of both can be criticised on crucial points. Ricoeur's work on happiness at first was as a philosopher, but he changed his discourse to a more religious register, one that appreciates the optative mood of language. It is within this optative mood that Ricoeur manages to bring philosophy's and theology's concepts of happiness into a fertile dialectic. The optative and religious images and metaphors provide for him a more holistic and unified way of thinking about happiness in relation to unhappiness and luck. An attempt to translate this optative understanding back to the indicative or imperative by theology and philosophy is futile, because happiness will then be again fragmented and reduced to descriptions and prescriptions. <![CDATA[<b>Prophecy and the prophetic as aspects of Paul's theology</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200010&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en As the earliest documents of Christianity, Paul's Letters include extensive evidence on prophecy and the prophetic, most particularly in 1 Corinthians 12-14. In view of the influential hypothesis on "the cessation of prophecy" in Ancient Judaism on the one hand and early Jewish and Christian versatility on prophecy on the other, this essay addresses the question what prophecy meant in Paul's days and how it may be situated as a spiritual gift in Paul's theology. It reconsiders the cessation hypothesis vis-à-vis Early Judaism, providing caveats on its application to the Dead Sea Scrolls and Flavius Josephus, thereby redressing the Second Temple Jewish context of Christian origins in this respect. The essay provides a contextual reading of key passages (1 Cor 12:411, 13:8-13, 14:1-5, 14:20-33a), offering new insights about communal parameters of prophecy by comparing Paul's ideas with contexts of Judaism, Jewish Hellenism and the Corinthians' Greek environment. <![CDATA[<b>The God of glory: Explicit references to God in discourses in the Acts of the Apostles (7:2-53; 14:15-18; 17:22-31)</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200011&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en This essay offers insight into Luke's concept of God by analysing three sections in which God is explicitly a topic of discussion. These sections are Stephen's apology (Acts 7:2-53), the account of Paul's and Barnabas' mission in Lystra (Acts 14:8-18), and the Areopagus speech (Acts 17:22-31). Because these texts share similar motifs, they can be said to constitute an argumentative series. In these sections, Luke provides a coherent concept of God comprised of many motifs from Luke-Acts. The central motif is that God created the world, which results in God's self-sufficiency. Therefore, a worship with neither sacrifices nor temple is the appropriate response to God as a self-sufficient, transcendent, spiritual, and perfect being that is completely different from every mortal being on earth. <![CDATA[<b>When God alters our fate: Relational freedom in Romans 5:1-11 and 8:18-39</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200012&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Fate played an enormous role in the Ancient Mediterranean world. Fate was personified in numerous ancient deities such as the Keres, the Moirae, and Fortuna. At the same time Stoic views on fate, as a chain of causes, impacted hugely on the ancients' general view on fate as an inexorable force which cannot be opposed, or whose direction and eventual outcomes cannot be changed. Against the backdrop, Paul's understanding of the nature of God's presence, actions and influence in the lives of believers in Romans 5:1-10 and 8:18-39 is discussed. Fate, in the sense of that which has been predetermined and written into the lives of individuals before birth, and which comes into existence in many different, fixed forms, or fate as a chain of causes, is never on Paul's mind. God's foreordained plan is not a predetermined, unalterable fate for each and every person over which they have no control or say whatsoever. Rather, God's πρόθεσις (prothesis) relates to the salvation of all believers. God refuses to surrender his people to their fate, namely death and eternal destruction. He changes fate into destiny for all who believe in Christ. <![CDATA[<b>The anthropological function of the outcry "When God searches my heart" in Psalm 139:1 and 23 and its later use in Romans 8:27</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200013&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Psalm 139 is viewed as a possible ritual or individual (though representing a group) meditative confession after some possible trial. This is said due to the "sapiential language and a reflective mood that are the most salient features of most elements" in the psalm, and also the psalm's perspective of YHWH as creator (Gerstenberger, 2001:406; Maré, 2010:697). Within Psalm 139 and throughout its creation imagery, the psalm makes use of multiple imageries relating to the human body. According to Psalm 139:1 and 23, God is searching the inmost being (the heart) of the one praying the psalm. Many scholars use these verses of Psalms 139 as in intertextual text for Romans 8:27. In this article an anthropological comparison between Psalm 139:1 and 23 on "when God searches our hearts" and its later use in Romans 8:27 is made to determine the relevance of the function of the outcry "when God searches my heart" and its intertextual importance or relevance. <![CDATA[<b>God in Galatians - Tendencies in the study of an important theme</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200014&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Since Nils Dahl's famous article on God as the most neglected factor in the study of the New Testament, many studies on God in the various corpi of the New Testament have been and are still being published. In this regard, the Pauline Letters have received a fair amount of attention. In this study an overview of studies on God in the Letter to the Galatians is provided. Four such studies are discussed: N.T. Wright's study, "The Letter to Galatians: Exegesis and theology" (published in 2000), Richard Hays's "The God of mercy who rescues us from the present evil age" (published in 2002), Jerome Neyrey's chapter on God in Galatians (in his book, Rendering to God. New Testament understandings of the divine, published in 2004) and Christiane Zimmerman's book Gott und seine Söhne. Das Gottesbild des Galaterbriefs (published in 2013). Each of these contributions is discussed in detail, after which the contributions of the four studies are compared, and some suggestions are made as to aspects that still need attention. <![CDATA[<b>He was with God and was God?</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200015&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The word θεός is used for both the Father and the Son in the Gospel of John. How should this be understood? After an analysis of the different uses of this word for the Son it is concluded that such a use is based on an intimate relation between the Father and Son which is expressed in functional unity as well as unity of will and thought. The claims of the Jewish opponents that Jesus makes himself God and is therefore a blasphemer are then considered. The Jewish opponents blame Jesus for trespassing against or even threatening the sovereignty of the only God of Israel. The conceptions about heavenly or angelic rulers that threaten one another are considered against John's strong imagery and language that indicates the non-threatening relationship between God, the Father and God, the Son. <![CDATA[<b>God in Systematic Theology after Barth: Trends and perspectives</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200016&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The article gives an overview of the state of scholarship on God in Systematic Theology since Karl Barth. The aim is to identify trends and to raise the question about the possibility of new insights generated in theological research. The pluralistic nature of Systematic Theology is highlighted. Having mapped the crucial insights articulated by Barth, the author identifies five trends in theological thinking on God: the Trinitarian Renaissance, the rethinking of the attribute tradition, the irruption of the other, the coming of global Christianity, and the quest for interdisciplinarity. The article concludes with an evaluation of the developments and registers critical shifts in the reflection on God in Systematic Theology. <![CDATA[<b>Deuteronomic tithe laws and their humanitarian implications for Africa</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200017&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en There has been no univocal position among scholars on the compatibility of the different codes for tithing, the number of tithe laws in the Old Testament, and the possibility of applying the Old Testament datum to contemporary Christianity. Driver, Wellhausen and Weinfeld see the tithe provisions in Deuteronomy as in "serious and indeed irreconcilable conflict" with other provisions in the Pentateuch, while McConville and Averbeck show that they are compatible. Although, the issue of compatibility of the number of tithe laws in the Old Testament may still be controversial, however, the theological significance of tithing at different times and places remains the same. The different contexts or traditions for the concept of tithing in the Old Testament, whether Priestly, Deuteronomic or Prophetic, present the greatest motivation for tithing as the worship of God. This paper re-examines selected verses from Deuteronomy 12, 14, and 26 that focus on theological themes such as covenant relationship, reverence for God, obedience and blessing, fellowship and welfare. It argues that a theological interpretation of tithe laws in Deuteronomy in the light of humanitarian understanding can facilitate a better administration of law and justice in Africa. <![CDATA[<b>Liturgy as space for encounters, which impact on the formation of Christian identity and way of life</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200018&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The researcher aims to investigate the impact of various forms of encounters experienced during the Sunday liturgy on the identity and daily lives of believers. Three encounters are identified and studied. Firstly, the personal encounter between the individual and God. Secondly, encounters between people where individuals share in each other's stories and realities. Thirdly, encounters with the world and society (the missional encounters with the world in need). This investigation aims to determine the impact of these encounters upon Christian identity and the subsequent way of life, from the conviction that liturgy and life are deeply related to one another and that these encounters shape the lives of worshippers within a unique South African society. <![CDATA[<b>Ethical preaching in post-apartheid South Africa? A few homiletic considerations</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200019&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en This article will try to indicate that while the church's approach during the apartheid era was characterized by liberation theology and preaching, the post-apartheid era -that is still characterized by social decay, moral impoverishment and especially an increase in poverty, family violence, divorce and a spirit of individualism - asks for an increased focus on sustainable poverty eradication. It is argued that in post-apartheid South Africa a fundamental consensus on binding values, non-negotiable standards and morally acceptable ground attitudes are urgently needed. It is in this context that the role of ethical preaching is examined. In a context of widespread poverty, unemployment and a sense of insecurity, apathy, unconcern and depression among many ethical preaching, as an orientation event, can bring a new dignity to people. <![CDATA[<b>A theologically-pastoral examination of the socio-economic situation of the brown welfare pensioners in the Redeemed African Methodist Church</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200020&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The South African society is characterised by socio-economic inequality between various social components which is also reflected in the older persons' population (Beukes 2014:32). The objective of this article is a theological-pastoral investigation of how apartheid and neoliberal market economy could be structurally responsible for the socio-economic situation of brown welfare pensioners which is then interpreted in the light of God's justice. The insight gained could then be used by the Redeemed African Methodist Church to devise an appropriate theological-pastoral strategy to assist these older persons. This article is based on empirical data that was gathered by means of focus group methodology. The findings are that these older persons are victims of external factors determining their socio-economic situation. The theoretical framework of this article is that theological-pastoral care to these older persons cannot be separated from theological-pastoral care of the public life. <![CDATA[<b>"Poverty and privilege": Re-hearing sermons of Beyers Naudé on religion and justice</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200021&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en This paper attempts to identify some ethical dimensions in the preaching of Beyers Naudé, as being representative of a structural-contextual-ethical mode of moral discourse. Cognisance is taken in particular of sermons preached shortly before the first general elections were held in South Africa, and sermons preached in the aftermath of this historical event. This is done to determine whether any fundamental changes took place in Naude's thinking on justice during these times of transition. A brief discussion of different theological discourses on restorative justice in South Africa is given. The paper concludes with some observations on the continuous relevance of Naudé for the current debate on restorative justice in South Africa. <![CDATA[<b>Heinrich Bullinger's doctrine on covenant and election in response to the problematic nature of TULIP</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200022&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en In this article, the question was raised whether a new appreciation and application of Heinrich Bullinger's doctrine of the covenant and of election could give rise to a more pastoral and non-rational way of thinking in relation to election/predestination as reflected in the five points of TULIP. Responses to TULIP within current evangelical theological circles were examined. Specifically Dave Hunt's book, 'What love is this' and the New Calvinism, were scrutinized in this regard, before it was indicated why Bullinger's view of the covenant and of election were chosen as the answer to the problem mentioned above. After investigating Bullinger's theology with regard to the covenant and election in contrast to later developments, it was shown how his view of the central place of the covenant in the history of revelation influences his doctrine of election to such an extent that his historical and Christological focus brings a more biblical version of election than that of TULIP to the evangelical discussion. Finally, some implications of his theology, especially for evangelical theology, are addressed. <![CDATA[<b><i>Interior intimo meo: </i>Rowan Williams on the Self</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200023&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en In this essay we discuss Williams's notion ofthe self as a social mediation. The argument is made that from early on Williams was influenced by different streams of thought that directed him to analogous conclusions regarding language and personhood. I will show that through internalizing of Augustine, Wittgensteinian philosophy and certain strands of Eastern Orthodox thought, Williams came to an understanding of language that was grounded in the particulars of human interaction, one that is finally kenotic since the imago dei is reflective of the imago trinitatis. It is within this context that one should place Williams own relationally-centred, non-egocentric construal of human personhood that finds its centre in the dynamic exteriority of love. <![CDATA[<b>Allan Boesak, Black Theology and Apartheid: A theological-historical approach</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200024&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en In this article I will give specific attention to the reciprocal relationship between Black Theology and Allan Boesak based on his lived experience of apartheid from a theological-historical perspective. It is my presupposition that Boesak's experience of apartheid made him prone to the influence of Black Theology and that he in turn adapted American Black Theology so that it could be made applicable to the South African context. Black Theology unlocked an entire new theological paradigm for Boesak which enabled him to speak prophetically to the challenges and injustices that occurred under apartheid in South Africa. Attention will be given to the emergence of Black Theology in South Africa, how Boesak was challenged by it and how Black Theology, through Boesak, impacted the theological landscape. <![CDATA[<b>A practical theology of bereavement care: Re-ritualization within a paradigm of "comforting presence"</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200025&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The investigation focuses on a concern for the marginalization of bereaved human beings in the context of cultural shifts now shaping twenty-first century pastoral care. The article advocates for a practical theology of bereavement to aid in nurturing care and eudaimonic well-being (including both vocational pastors and funeral directors) within the paradigmatic framework of a theopaschitic understanding of compassion (oiktirmos). The investigation examines the growing threat of deritualization - a public openness to revise, replace, minimize the significance of, and even eliminate or avoid long-held funerary rituals to assist in the adaptation of loss. The notion of re-ritualization is operationalized as an intentional act of restoring and re-engaging in creative and meaningful ritual forms that give symbolic expression to significant thoughts and feelings of the bereaved within a social ethos that is no longer committed to a conventional or fixed approach to ritualization. In order to facilitate a process of re-ritualization, bereavement care is linked to the notion of "comforting presence". <![CDATA[<b>Perichoretic interaction within the Trinity as a paradigm for fostering unity in the Public Affairs Committee (PAC) in Malawi</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200026&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The revival of the patristic doctrine of perichorësis in relation to the Trinitarian framework has received overwhelming support in modern theological discourse. From Anagorous to John of Damascus, and from reformation to the 21st century theological scholarship, the doctrine of perichorësis has been viewed by many as a palatable approach and a suitable paradigm in addressing various challenges affecting the church and society globally, because it is out of this patristic doctrine that the entire doctrine of the Trinity is sustained. If it was not for perichorësis neither nature, personal, or salvific doctrine of Trinity would have no value. If not for perichorësis, Arianism, encompassing all aspects of modalism with various assorted gods within Christianity, would be a global phenomenon. This article presents perichorësis as the paradigm in advancing a national unity agenda within the Church and State in conjunction with a case study of the Public Affairs Committee in Malawi, which is a representation of the voice of the faith community in addressing the national unity agenda and other governance issues. The main argument in the paper is that adoption and emulation of the immanent Trinitarian perichoretic life experienced within the Trinitarian community of the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit is the best way forward in bringing meaningful unity in society today. This is because perichorësis, which flows within the Trinitarian framework, is the model and an example of what humans and society must emulate to enhance unity and togetherness. <![CDATA[<b>Creation made into </b><b>הָמְכָח: The eco-theological appraisal of the intrinsic worth of nature in Proverbs 3:19-20</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200027&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en This article explores the statement "creation made in wisdom" of Proverbs 3:19-20 as pointing to the Earth Bible's principle of intrinsic worth/value of nature. This article argues that our contemporary societies need to adjust their development in harmony with the cosmic order as secured by God at creation through wisdom. Wisdom in creation constitutes the supreme ideal for living wisely, and for constructing a healthy society that is in harmony with creation. <![CDATA[<b>Crossing boundaries: Social-scientific reading of the faith of a Canaanite woman (Mt 15:21-28)</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200028&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Social-scientific criticism refers to an interpretation of the biblical text that takes into cognizance the social system that produced that text. This article presents a social scientific reading of the faith of a Canaanite woman in Matthew 15:21-28. The article outlines models of social systems in Matthew 15:21-28 like landscape and spatiality, gender and sexuality, ethnicity, purity, and social status in order to achieve a social scientific reading. The purpose of this article is to firstly demonstrate that the models of social system in Matthew 15:21-28 served as boundaries to the faith of a Canaanite woman. Secondly, it is to demonstrate that the Canaanite woman crossed such boundaries in Matthew 15:21-28 for her daughter to receive healing. Lastly, the Canaanite woman serves as a model for South African women today who have to cross boundaries like landscape and spatiality, gender and sexuality, ethnicity, purity, and social status. <![CDATA[<b>Being human in the shadow of racism</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200029&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en This paper is inspired by the experience of a black student who underwent racist treatment in Brazil. Nowadays, racism may appear in any societal structure. Misuse of power is one of the causes of violence and racism. A person who finds him- or herself in a position of some power may, while acting in the name of "law", turn into an incarnation of the law. This paper wishes to speak out on matters of violence, oppression and racism which are spreading in society. The faces of racism need to be shown, even where racism is institutionalized. <![CDATA[<b>Church breakaways as a prototype of commercialisation and commodification of religion in the Pentecostal Church Movement in South Africa: considering curricula offerings for pastors</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200030&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The common occurrence of church breakaways witnessed in the Pentecostal Church Movement in South Africa today highlights trends that appear bent towards the commercialisation and commodification of religion. Material and financial gain are seen as motivators of such a trend. On the other hand, research shows that signs of underperformance and a poor show in church leadership among religious leaders may be attributed to among others, deficiencies in the initial training of pastors. This article will, through the employment of literature review and careful observation made among communities, discuss breakaway trends and their impact on churches and society. Thereafter, we will suggest pointers to be followed in curriculum development for religious leaders. The article will also briefly refer to the current debate on the decolonisation of curricula offerings in training programmes for pastors. Such an approach could add value to good practice to those who aspire to become religious leaders in serving communities. <![CDATA[<b>Conflict theory in the inculturation of the Gospel in the Nso' of Cameroon</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200031&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en This article defines and describes conflict theory, critical theory and the views of some of their proponents, inculturation, the gospel, and Nso'. The article looks at conflict in Nso' that can be traced back to the fact that the missionaries did not understand certain aspects of Nso' culture. Consequently, there was some conflict between Christianity and Nso' culture, particularly with ngwerong2 and ngiri³- the core traditional social associations of the Nso' people. The article thus explains the tension that existed in the missionary era and still exists somehow today between Christianity and Nso' culture. In order to elucidate this tension, the author uses two examples: one on the encounter between one of the most dreaded masquerades and a parish priest (an early missionary in Nso' land), and the other on the main traditional social association in Nso' and the first Christians of Nso' origin. Having done that, the author outlines the incompatible activities of the traditional social associations of the Nso' people vis á vis the tenets of Christianity, showing that an understanding of these activities is necessary for the inculturation of the gospel in Nso'. In addition, the article equally shows that an understanding of the complexities and the dynamics involved in the relationship between Christ and culture is also necessary for the inculturation of the gospel. Furthermore, alluding to conflict theory and critical theory and using what he calls "consultative/dialogical" critical approach to cultural transformation, the author suggests how the tension between Christianity and Nso' culture could be curbed. <![CDATA[<b>The Leibholz-Schmitt connection's formative influence on Bonhoeffer's 1932-33 entry into public theology</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200032&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Dietrich Bonhoeffer's brother-in-law Gerhard Leibholz's insight into the Fascist theory of the state's messianic leadership and myth of creating communal life became a major source of information for Bonhoeffer. Leibholz had gained this knowledge in close jurisprudential cooperation with Carl Schmitt as is evidenced by Leibholz's 1929 habilitation thesis which at the same time intersected with Bonhoeffer's academic work. Their original political leanings towards authoritarianism, Volk, and Vitalism were revised by Bonhoeffer and Leibholz in November 1932 through stepping out into a coordinated public opposition to the approaching political changes. But both only recognized the populist xenophobic destructiveness of such a life, hidden beneath the myth of unity, once Schmitt turned to National Socialism in early 1933. Bonhoeffer's theology, built on the Leibholz-Schmitt discourse, remains a call for vigilance against the abuse of power, populism, and xenophobia, and continues to call for seeking God-revealed life. <![CDATA[<b>"Hope for even the most wretched"? On remembering the Reformation</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200033&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Dietrich Bonhoeffer's brother-in-law Gerhard Leibholz's insight into the Fascist theory of the state's messianic leadership and myth of creating communal life became a major source of information for Bonhoeffer. Leibholz had gained this knowledge in close jurisprudential cooperation with Carl Schmitt as is evidenced by Leibholz's 1929 habilitation thesis which at the same time intersected with Bonhoeffer's academic work. Their original political leanings towards authoritarianism, Volk, and Vitalism were revised by Bonhoeffer and Leibholz in November 1932 through stepping out into a coordinated public opposition to the approaching political changes. But both only recognized the populist xenophobic destructiveness of such a life, hidden beneath the myth of unity, once Schmitt turned to National Socialism in early 1933. Bonhoeffer's theology, built on the Leibholz-Schmitt discourse, remains a call for vigilance against the abuse of power, populism, and xenophobia, and continues to call for seeking God-revealed life. <![CDATA[<b>"Fiat Lux." Navigating chaos through Sensing Leadership</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200034&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en This article provides an overview of change management strategies described in business science. From the distinctions made, it becomes clear that change is all-pervasive and the result of complex interactions within and between the internal and external environments of organizations and communities. Complexity theory is subsequently considered as a better vantage point from where a response to change may be informed. The leadership style to correspond to this new reading of change needs to be that of "transcending leadership" where sensing and sense-making skills are honed to sense emerging meaning in organizations, in interpersonal relationships and through intrapersonal reflection. Instead of "making" change happen, the new leadership "lets" things happen, sensing the connections between emerging events in the context and creating a level of readiness to find the potential meaning in what may usually have been perceived as mere chaos. The creation narrative and a new reading of chaos as possibility provide Judeo-Christian sources of spirituality in this regard. Other Biblical narratives are cited to show in which way different change management frameworks can be applied to the respective narratives, but also how sensing and sense-making remain the common leadership attributes in successfully navigated change. <![CDATA[<b>Re-appreciating the significance of historical perspectives and practices on reformed pastoral theology and care today</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200035&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en This article investigates the issue of Reformed pastoral theology and care, from a historical perspective. Contemporary literature on this topic is not always informed by the actual pastoral care practices of historical church leaders, specifically up until and including the Reformation era. Consequently it can sometimes lack an important dimension needed to foster more theological depth and clarity, which is essential for sound pastoral care. Thus, it is necessary to clearly establish the connections between Reformed theology and practice in historical view, and pastoral care ministries in the church today. Despite huge societal changes that have taken place since the Reformation era, the core focus on the compassionate "care of souls" has remained unchanged. Can leading Reformers' pastoral theological ethos and practices still be deemed relevant, whilst considering fresh issues in our contemporary pastoral care ministry contexts? <![CDATA[<b>The phenomenon of philosophy in Afrikaans: On Pieter Duvenage's <i>Afrikaanse filosofie: Perspektiewe en dialoë</i></b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2413-94672018000200036&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The year 2016 saw the publication of Afrikaanse filosofie: Perspektiewe en dialoë ("Afrikaanse" Philosophy: Perspectives and Dialogues) (Bloemfontein: SUN Press, ISBN: 9781920382780) by Pieter Duvenage, an attempt to trace the development over the last 100 years (apparently) of philosophy practised in the Afrikaans language. Duvenage is not the first to map the history of this philosophy, but he is the first to do so through engaging in dialogue with the philosophers in question (and not simply through writing about them) and through focusing specifically on its development at a number of mainly Afrikaans universities. I elaborate on the strengths and weaknesses of Duvenage's book and end by exploring the sense in which "Afrikaanse" philosophy qualifies as "African" philosophy (an issue Duvenage neglects), thus becoming, not a target of decolonization and Africanization, but a vehicle thereof.