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In die Skriflig

On-line version ISSN 1018-6441

Abstract

DU PLOOY, A. le R.. The Confession of Belhar and ecumenism against the backdrop of the Three Forms of Unity. In Skriflig (Online) [online]. 2010, vol.44, n.2, pp. 349-368. ISSN 1018-6441.

This article focuses on the Confession of Belhar and investigates from an ecclesiastical and theological perspective the question whether this confession should be accepted and added as a fourth confession to the existing Three Forms of Unity. The following aspects are addressed: the origin and content of the Confession of Belhar, the ecclesiastical and theological reaction within the family of Dutch Reformed Churches as well as in the reformed ecumenical world. A critical analysis of the content is made and evaluated, and in conclusion attention is given to a few options with regard to the place of the Confession of Belhar in the reformed ecumenical world in the future. A comparison between the Three Forms of Unity and the Confession of Belhar shows a definite difference in quality. The Confession of Belhar is not of a similar standard with regard to the theological and doctrinal content and structure of the Three Forms of Unity, and does not add quality or neglected faith-related value to these existing creeds.

Keywords : apartheid; belydenis; belydenis van Belhar; ekumene.

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