Original Research

Contextualising biblical exegesis: What is the African biblical hermeneutic approach?

Mbengu D. Nyiawung
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 69, No 1 | a2011 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v69i1.2011 | © 2013 Mbengu D. Nyiawung | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 24 May 2013 | Published: 28 October 2013

About the author(s)

Mbengu D. Nyiawung, Department of New Testament, Presbyterian Theological Seminary, Cameroon; Department of New Testament Studies, University of Pretoria, South Africa, South Africa

Share this article

Bookmark and Share


This article responded to the question about the right methodology needed for the reconstruction of a viable African Christian theology. It equally contributed an answer to earlier concerns by Appiah-Kubi, Stinton and Nyiawung, who had grappled with an African response to the question of Jesus’ identity: ‘Who do you say I am?’ (Lk 9:20). It also attended to Aben’s remark that Africans contribute minimally to biblical theology especially in the domain of biblical exegesis. Finally, it proposed an African biblical hermeneutic approach, a shift of paradigm from the text, its author as well as its context to the context of the subject of exegesis as a contextual approach of biblical criticism. Three main conclusions emerged from the article, namely, (1) the African context contains enormous potentials that can enhance the understanding and interpretation of biblical texts; (2) from the perspective of biblical interpretation, there is no superior context or culture; and (3) the African biblical hermeneutic approach is a possible route to the development of an authentic African Christian theology.


African Christian theology; Jesus’ identity; exegesis; biblical hermeneutic; biblical interpretation; African context


Total abstract views: 4616
Total article views: 14139


Crossref Citations

1. The 3Cs of Colonisation and their Impacts on African Slavery: The Nigeria’s Experience
John Arierhi Ottuh
Black Theology  vol: 20  issue: 1  first page: 41  year: 2022  
doi: 10.1080/14769948.2022.2038909