Original Research

Inklusiwiteit as evangelie

Ernest Van Eck
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 65, No 1 | a304 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v65i1.304 | © 2009 Ernest Van Eck | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 30 June 2009 | Published: 10 November 2009

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Ernest Van Eck, University of Pretoria, South Africa

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Abstract

Inclusivity as gospel

In antiquity, group identity was based on cultural ethnicity. Groups used their ethnicity to define and delineate themselves as unique. Ethnicity was determined by characteristics like family (kinship), name, language, homeland, myths of common ancestry, customs, shared historical memories, phenotypical features, and religion. The Jewish temple religion and law-abiding Jews in the early church (as depicted in Acts and the congregations of Paul) also used their ethnic identity as argument for justifying the exclusion of other groups/ethnic peoples from the Temple and the early church, respectively. Jesus, Acts and Paul, on the contrary, proclaimed that ethnicity meant nothing when it comes to being in God’s presence, being part of the early Christ-followers, or being part of any local (Pauline) congregation. For this reason, it can be concluded that the New Testament bears witness to an inclusive ecclesiology.


Keywords

etniese identiteit; inklusiewe ekklesiologie; kuturele identiteit; etnisiteitsteorieë; evangelie

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