THE RESPONSIBILITY OF ENGAGING IN CONTEMPORARY THEOLOGY: A FEW OBSERVATIONS
AbstractThis paper is born from recognition of the responsibility of engaging in “contemporary theology”, that is, the task of articulating and reflecting on the question “Who is God and what is God doing today, in my life, in my family, in this Christian community, in this local context, in this country, continent and world?” Theologians, realising the complexity of the question, may prefer to shy away from it. However, that would leave room for others to answer the question in rather simplistic and often fundamentalist ways. The paper offers some rather bold observations as a stimulus to engage in contemporary theology in South Africa in a responsible way. The argument is structured in the following sections: 1. A brief overview of some challenges and threats facing Christianity in South Africa. 2. A critical analysis of various ways of responding to these challenges. 3. The need to resist religious reductionism and to dare to speak about God. 4. Some broad parameters within which contemporary Christian witnesses to God’s love may be tested.
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