Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Reconciliation – Vertical and Horizontal Dimensions

A Guest Post by Volker Rabens

Below in the link you’ll find my short article that reviews a fascinating conference on reconciliation held last August in Prague. Chris and I thought that for those of you who have not been able to attend this biennial conference of the Fellowship of European Evangelical Theologians it would be a good idea to make this review available online. In the article you’ll find among other things a summary of high-quality papers like these:

  • “Reconciliation in the New Testament: Its Centrality and Relevance”, Prof. I. Howard Marshall (University of Aberdeen, Scotland)
  • “Human Reconciliation in the New Testament with Special Reference to Philemon, Colossians and Ephesians”, Prof. Max Turner (London School of Theology, England)
  • “Reconciliation and Inter-Church Dialogue in Post-Marxist Societies”, Prof. Johannes Reimer (Unisa, South Africa; GBFE, Germany)

Interested (and able to read some German)? Then click HERE.

Interested – but not able to read German? Then perhaps you want to read on a bit (or even have a look at the FEET homepage: http://www.feet-europe.net/).

What is FEET? “The Fellowship of European Evangelical Theologians was established almost thirty years ago as the result of an initiative by John Stott. At that time scholarship that combined the highest academic standards with a commitment to the authority of Scripture and to an orthodox, biblical theology was comparatively rare in Continental Europe. Stott saw the need to encourage evangelical biblical scholars and theologians in Europe by providing the kind of network that already existed in the United Kingdom through the Tyndale Fellowship and in North America through the Evangelical Theological Society and the Institute for Biblical Research. [For those of you who have followed Chris’ blog on the ETS, you may be relieved to hear that the FEET does not prescribe the Chicago Declaration. I got the impression at the conference that FEET members are concerned with a “positive”, integrative theology.] Since then an international conference has been held every two years on some specific theological theme.”

The conference in August dealt with both vertical and horizontal aspects of reconciliation. Here are some of the questions that were raised with regard to horizontal reconciliation: “How can the narrow gate of salvation and the wish for a European or global good be integrated? What about the burning questions of what it is to be European and Christian in the West, Centre and East of that Continent, and how are old wounds to be remembered but not glorified? How can we balance even our own personal priorities, how reconcile the parts of ourselves that pull us in different directions?” These and other questions were the focus of a number of papers and lively discussions at the conference.

Well, by now even those of you who don’t read a word of German may want to have a look at the article linked to above, because…it has pictures :-)


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