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The ethical responsibility of the church with regard to inclusive versus traditional God-language

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dc.contributor.author Baard RS en
dc.date.accessioned 2016-09-22T08:38:50Z
dc.date.available 2016-09-22T08:38:50Z
dc.date.submitted 1998 en
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11892/37074
dc.description.abstract One of the social issues influencing Christian theology today is the issue of inclusive language, including the issue of how to speak about God. In this regard theology is faced with an ethical dilemma: being faithful to the tradition in which it stands, while at the same time striving to include those who feel excluded by that tradition. This issue is here discussed by using Heinz Eduard Todt's six steps of ethical decision making. In the first section the issue is defined as a real ethical problem because of the apparent link between power and God-language. This is followed by an analysis of the situation, focusing on critical voices within the church, the formative role of language, and the patriarchal roots of the Christian tradition. The third section deals with the possible long-term effects of inclusive and exclusive God-language, respectively. In the fourth section possible criteria for making a decision are identified, namely: God-language must correspond to the semiotic universe encoded in the texts of the tradition; it must flow from the church's vision and not merely be pragmatic or politically correct, and it must contribute to a better understanding of the essential nature of the Christian faith. The fifth section identifies some issues which should be kept in mind when testing this decision, namely the communal nature of Church worship, the historical nature of the Christian faith, the role of the Christian Scripture in worship, and the psychological dimensions of worship. The sixth and final section deals with the actual ethical decision itself. It is proposed that the church commits to a sensitive introduction of inclusive God-language according to the criteria established earlier. The link between power relations and language is seen as the decisive factor for this decision. en
dc.language English en
dc.subject Religion en
dc.subject Practical theology (Sermon and preaching) en
dc.title The ethical responsibility of the church with regard to inclusive versus traditional God-language en
dc.type Masters degree en
dc.description.degree MTh en


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