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Doing classical theology in context

Gerrit Neven

HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies; Vol 63, No 4 (2007), 1413-1427. doi: 10.4102/hts.v63i4.257

Submitted: 07 May 2007
Published:  07 May 2007


This article is about doing classical theology in context. The weight of my argument is that classical text of Karl Barth’s theology is great intellectual text means: being addressed by this text in the context in which one lives. The basic keywords that constitute a rule for reading those texts are “equality”, “event” and “re-contextualisation”. The article contains two sections: The first section elaborates statements about the challenge of the event and the project of rereading classics by way of recontextualisation. The word “event” refers to true and innovating moments in history which one can share, or which one can betray. Classical texts always share in those liberative moments. The question then is in what sense do they present a challenge to the contemporary reader. The second section elaborates the position of man as central and all decisive for doing theology in context now. In this section, the author appeals for a renewal of the classical anthropology as an anthropology of hope. This anthropology contradicts postmodern concepts of otherness.

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Author affiliations

Gerrit Neven, Theological University Kampen, Netherlands



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ISSN: 0259-9422 (print) | ISSN: 2072-8050 (online)

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