Title page for ETD etd-10242005-143644


Document Type Doctoral Thesis
Author Van der Linde, Hugo Hendrik
URN etd-10242005-143644
Document Title 'n Kerkhistoriese en kerkregtelike studie van die kerkverenigingsproses in die NG Kerkfamilie (Afrikaans)
Degree PhD (Church History and Church Polity)
Department Church History and Church Polity
Supervisor
Advisor Name Title
Prof J W Hofmeyr
Keywords
  • Christian Union South Africa
  • Nederduitse Gereformeerde Kerk
  • South Africa race relations history 20th C
Date 2002-12-31
Availability unrestricted
Abstract
Afrikaans: Die eenheid van die kerk is 'n skriftuurlike werklikheid. Hierdie eenheid is nie alleen 'n geestelike eenheid nie, maar moet ook uitgroei tot 'n konkrete, sigbare eenheid. Die NG Kerkfamilie in Suid-Afrika worstel met die vraag oor hoe hierdie eenheid sigbaar vergestalt moet word. Die NG Kerkfamilie bevind homself tans in 'n impasse en die vordering op die pad na kerklike eenheid het in 'n groot mate tot stilstand gekom.

Die studie stel die historiese en kerkregtelike verloop van die kerkverenigingsproses in die NG Kerkfamilie aan die orde. Vir bykans tweehonderd jaar was die NG Kerk één kerk. Hierna het daar verwydering gekom en het dit gegroei vanaf die hou van aparte dienste tot die stigting van eie kerke op kleurgrondsiag. Die NG Kerkfamilie het die moeisame pad na kerklike eenheid begin stap. Hierdie proses is gekenmerk deur 'n wisseiwerking tussen toenadering of 'n soeke na eenheid aan die een kant en verwydering of verskeurdheid aan die ander kant.

Die NG Kerk het die staatsbeieid van apartheid ondersteun en het dit skriftuurlik regverdig. Hierdeur het die kerk homself geïsoleer en het die verskeurdheid groter geword in die NG Kerkfamilie. Die NG Sendingkerk het 'n Status Confession afgekondig en dit het aanleiding gegee tot die Belydenis van Belhar. Hiermee het die NG Sendingkerk die verdeeldheid ook in 'n belydenis verwoord. Die NG Kerk het veral sedert 1990 'n hand van versoening uitgereik en gekies vir een kerkverband. Eenheid het totstand gekom tussen die NG Sendingkerk en die NG Kerk in Afrika met die stigting van die Verenigende Gereformeerde Kerk in Suider-Afrika (1994). Ongelukkig het interne weerstand in die hofsaal geeindig en het 'n deel van die NG Kerk in Afrika bly voortbestaan.

Die kerkverenigingsproses het verval in 'n slakkepas en het uiteindelik in 'n impasse beland. Hoewel kontak op plaaslike vlak en nuwe gesprekspotensiaal op sinodale vlak ontgin is, is weinig vordering gemaak. Verskeie struikelblokke in die pad na kerklike eenheid belemmer die vordering met die kerkverenigingsproses in die NG Kerkfamilie. Die studie toon aan dat meer as net teologiese, kerklike en kerkregtelike faktore dikwels 'n rol speel in die vordering al dan nie met kerkverenigingsprosesse. Almal van ons sonder, bewustelik of onbewustelik, bepaalde faktore uit in die proses. Die gespreksgenote het dikwels nie dieselfde einddoelwit nie en dit het tot gevolg dat verskillende agendas 'n bepalende rol in die verenigingsproses speel.

Prinsipieel-kerkregtelike beginsels lê onder andere ten grondslag van 'n suksesvolle kerkvereningingsproses. Hierdie fundamentele vertrekpunte in die gereformeerde kerkreg moet as basis dien vir die kerkverenigingsproses in die NG Kerkfamilie. Verskillende modelle vir kerkeenheid is in die verlede reeds aangebied as oplossings vir die strukturele eenheid.

Hierdie studie bied 'n dinamiese, bifokale versoeningsmodel aan vir die proses van kerkvereniging in die NG Kerkfamilie. Hierdie model wil dinamiese groei teweeg bring in die onderlinge verhoudings en intussen ook geleentheid skep vir outentieke verantwoordbare verhoudingstigting. Twee fokus- of groeipunte (sinodale en plaaslike vlak) werk gelyktydig om die proses te bevorder en versoening vorm die basis vir hernude groei tot eenheid.

English: The unification of the church is a scriptural reality. This unity is not only a spiritual unity, but must also develop into a concrete, visible unity. The Dutch Reformed Church family in South Africa are struggling with the question of how this unity should be visibly embodied. The Dutch Reformed Church family presently finds itself in an impasse and the progress on the road to ecclesiastical unity has, to a large extent, come to a standstill.

The study allows discussion on the church historical and church polity course of the unification process of the church in the Dutch Reformed Church family. For almost two hundred years the Dutch Reformed Church (NG Church) was one church. After this, a division occurred and it grew from holding separate services to the establishment of own churches based on colour. Then the Dutch Reformed Church (NG Church) began the arduous road to ecclesiastical unity. This process was characterised by an interaction between reconciliation or a search for unity on the one side, and alienation or dissension on the other side.

The Dutch Reformed Church (NG Church) supported the government's policy of Apartheid and justified it scriptually. By doing this, the church isolated itself and the dissension became more widespread• in the Dutch Reformed Church family. The NG Missionary Church had a Status Confession is promulgated and gave rise to the Confession of Belhar. Thereby the NG Missionary Church also expressed the dissension in a confession. The Dutch Reformed Church (NG Church) stretched out a hand of reconciliation particularly since 1990 and opted for one church relationship. Unity came about between the NG Missionary Church and the NG Church in Africa with the founding of the United Reformed Church in Southern Africa in 1994. Unfortunately, internal resistance ended in the law courts and only part of the NG Church in Africa survived.

The unification process of the church fell into a snail's pace and eventually landed in an impasse. Although contact on local level and new potential for dialogue was cultivated on synodical level, little progress was made. Various stumbling blocks on the road to church unity thwarted the progress of the unification process of the Dutch Reformed Church family. The study reflects whether or not more than only theological, ecclesiastical and church polity factors often play a role in the progress of the unification processes of the church. We all exempt, whether intentionally or not, certain specific factors in the process. The fellow conversationalists often do not have the same goal and the result is that various agenda’s play a determining role in the unification process.

Fundamental church polity principles, inter alia, lay the foundation of a successful unification process in the church. These fundamental points of departure in the reformed church polity must serve as a basis for the unification process in the Dutch Reformed Church family. Various models for the unity of the church have already in the past been presented as solutions for structural unity.

This study presents a dynamic, bifocal reconciliation model for the unification process of the church in the Dutch Reformed Church family. This model aims at bringing about dynamic growth in mutual relationships, simultaneously also creating an opportunity for establishing authentic, accountable relationships. Two focal- or growth points (on synodal and local level) work together simultaneously to promote the process, and reconciliation forms the basis for renewed growth toward unity.

© 2002, University of Pretoria. All rights reserved. The copyright in this work vests in the University of Pretoria. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the University of Pretoria.

Please cite as follows:

Van der Linde, HH 2002 ’n Kerkhistoriese en kerkregtelike studie van die kerkverenigingsproses in die NG Kerkfamilie, PhD thesis, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, viewed yymmdd < http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/etd-10242005-143644/ >

H315/ag

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