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(1,630 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
1. Term The term “sacramentality” and the related adjective “sacramental” have no single meaning but are used in different ways in different connections. Formally, “sacramentality” is an abstract term based on “sacrament” and denoting what is essential to a sacrament as such. It serves, then, to show with what right the church describes various actions as sacraments. In this sense M. J. Scheeben (1835–88) raised the question of the sacramentality of marriage (pp. 593–610). By its very nature the term “sacramentality” looks beyond the question of the number of sacramen…

Reformation Principles

(524 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
1. By the term “Reformation principles” the Formula of Concord and Protestant orthodoxy (§1) understand negatively slanted formulations of the doctrine of justification, above all sola fide, “by faith alone,” on the basis of Martin Luther’s (1483–1546) rendering of Romans 3:28 (see LW  ¶ 35.187ff.; Faith 3.5.3). This exclusion of works as a ground of justification does not mean the isolating of faith but singles out justifying faith because it receives the righteousness of Christ that is given by grace alone. The formula thus has the implication of solus Christus (Christ alone) and sol…


(692 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
1. In the context of Christian theology, ubiquity, or the teaching that God is everywhere (Lat. ubique), is related to the distinction between God and the world (i.e., God’s transcendence). The omnipresence of God shows clearly that the divine transcendence (Immanence and Transcendence) does not mean that the Creator is alongside the creature but involves the direct permeation of every creature by the Creator, who has given it its being and maintains it in being ( conservatio; Creation). Pantheism, which stresses the unity of God with the world, does at least resist the…

International Council of Community Churches

(493 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
The International Council of Community Churches (ICCC) is a national organization of independent churches in the United States. It works particularly to foster a sense of Christian loyalty to a church’s own community, instead of primary loyalty going to a denomination or other organization outside that community. Its fourfold stated vision is to “affirm individual freedom of conscience; protect and promote church self-determination; proclaim that the love of God, which unites, can overcome any d…


(130 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[English Version] Walter, Johannes v. (8.11.1876 Petersburg – 5.1.1940 Bad Nauheim), Kirchengeschichtler in Breslau, Wien und Rostock (seit 1921). Herauszuheben sind seine Edition des Sentenzenkomm. des Gandulf von Bologna; reformationsgesch. Studien: etwa zur Deutung der Rechtfertigung durch K. Holl (Mystik und Rechtfertigung beim jungen Luther, 1937) und zu »Luther und Melanchthon während des Augsburger Reichstags« (1931). W.s Stärke ist die Erhebung und lebendige Beschreibung der Binnenperspektiv…


(558 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[English Version] . Der Begriff bez. zunächst eine Position, die in einem wörtl. Verständnis der Einsetzungsworte (Dies ist mein Leib/Blut) davon ausgeht, daß »in, mit und unter« den Elementen des Abendmahls tatsächlich der Leib und das Blut Jesu Christi empfangen wird; dies in Abgrenzung etwa zur Position des Berengar von Tours oder Zwingli, welche die Einsetzungsworte als uneigentliche Rede deuten und die Elemente als Hinweiszeichen auf die nach der Himmelfahrt zur Rechten Gottes sitzende Mensch…

Status confessionis

(379 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[English Version] . Der Begriff leitet sich von der Bekenntnissituation nach Mt 10,32f. her, in der es (in der Situation der Verfolgung) um die Entscheidung über die Proklamation der Zugehörigkeit zu Christus oder die Absage an Christus geht. Nicht jede Entscheidungssituation ist eine Bekenntnissituation. So ist für Paulus das Essen von Götzenopferfleisch an sich bedeutungslos für das Verhältnis zu Gott (Adiaphora); für den allerdings, der das Essen des Götzenopferfleisches nur als Trennung von Christus betrachten kann, gilt, daß e…

Walter, Johannes von

(152 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[German Version] (Nov 8, 1876, Petersburg – Jan 5, 1940, Bad Nauheim), church historian at Breslau (Wrocław), Vienna, and Rostock (from 1921). His edition of the commentary on the Sentences by Gandulf of Bologna deserves special mention, along with his studies on the history of the Reformation, including his analysis of K. Holl’s interpretation of justification ( Mystik und Rechtfertigung beim jungen Luther, 1937) and the Diet of Augsburg ( Luther und Melanchthon während des Augsburger Reichstags, 1931). His strength was the elicitation and vivid description of the inte…


(633 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[German Version] κένωσις/ kénōsis; exinanitio). The Christ-hymn in Phil. 2:6–11 describes the life of Jesus in two “stages” as a path from incarnation to the cross and as post-resurrection exaltation. The doctrine of the “state” of humiliation, which was not really articulated terminologically until the intra-Protestant dispute concerning Christology, adopts the central term associated with the first stage: heautón ekénōsen (v. 7). This doctrine expounds the relationship between the doctrines of the person and work of Christ. Beginning with the initial …

Hypostatic Union

(410 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[German Version] This term refers to the clarification of the mode of the unity of God and human in Christ gained in the course of the Early Church's christological disputes (Christology) by differentiating between the Greek ϕύσις/ phýsis (Lat. natura) and ὑπόστασις/ hypóstasis (Lat. suppositum/ persona): it describes a unity of deity and humanity on the level of the ὑπόστασις (Hypostasis) despite the difference in the natures (Doctrine of two natures). The formula thus attained is extremely capable of and in need of interpretation; the various understa…

Schlink, Edmund

(186 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[German Version] (Mar 6, 1903, Darmstadt – May 20, 1984, Heidelberg), one of the leading participants in the ecumenical dialogue following World ¶ War II. His academic career began during the Kirchenkampf; he was active in many functions on behalf of the Confessing Church. Initially he taught at Bethel; after the seminary was dissolved by the Gestapo in 1939, he served as a pastor. After the war, he accepted a call to Heidelberg, where the founded the first Ecumenical Institute. His multifaceted ecumenical involvement both in…

Thomas Aquinas, Saint

(3,398 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[German Version] (1224/1225, Roccasecca, duchy of Aquino – Mar 7, 1274, Fossanova) I. Life and Work Thomas Aquinas was born the son of Landolfo de Aquino, a member of the lower nobility, and his wife Theodora, in Roccasecca in the duchy of Aquino, his family’s seat. Aquino lay at the frontier of the church ¶ states, in the far north of the kingdom of Sicily. As oblate (I) Thomas received his early education at the nearby Benedictine abbey of Monte Cassino. In 1239 he went to study at the Imperial University of Naples. There, c. 1244, he entered the …

Stier, Ewald Rudolf

(204 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[German Version] (Mar 17, 1800, Fraustadt, Lower Silesia [now Wschowa, Poland] – Dec 16, 1862, Eisleben) was a figure in the post-1817 revival movement. His writing was influenced by Romanticism, and he drew on the patriotic liberalism of the Burschenschaften. In 1818 he came in contact with F.A.G. Tholuck and the revivalist group associated with H.E. Baron v. Kottwitz; he dated his conversion from that year. He was active as an academic teacher (e.g. in Barmen-Wichlinghausen). His primary interest was exegesis; he focused initially …

Rudelbach, Andreas Gottlob

(268 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[German Version] (Sep 29, 1792, Copenhagen – Mar 3, 1862, Slagelse, Zealand). After his university studies, degree, and habilitation, he was appointed to a pastorate in Copenhagen; there he translated the Augsburg Confession and its Apologia as well as patristic texts into Danish. In 1829 he succeeded E.W. Hengstenberg as superintendent in Glauchau (Saxony); during his tenure, a revival movement (Revival/Revival movements) took root. Rudelbach was a confessional Lutheran (Neo-Lutheranism), who also supported the Evangelische Kirchenzeitung and its antirationalist posit…

Thomasius, Gottfried

(190 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[German Version] ( Jul 26, 1802, Egenhausen – Jan 24, 1875, Erlangen), theologian associated with the Erlangen School (professor at Erlangen from 1842). Thomasius considered Scripture, the church’s confessions of faith, and the individual consciousness of salvation (faith) to be substantially identical manifestations of Christianity. He organized his dogmatic theology ( Christi Person und Werk, 5 vols., 1852–1861), focused on Christology and its implications, as a methodical explication of the consciousness of fellowship with God mediated through …

Status confessionis

(393 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[German Version] The concept of a status confessionis comes from the situation presented in Matt 10:32f., in which – under persecution – one must decide (Decision) between confessing Christ and denying Christ. Not every situation requiring a decision involves a status confessionis. Paul, for example, considered eating food offered to idols irrelevant to a person’s relationship to God (Adiaphora). But those who could see eating such food only as separation from Christ should refrain (Rom 14; 1 Cor 8). The term itself emerged during the Adiaphorist controversy, in which Mela…

Hofmann, Johann Christian Konrad von

(868 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[German Version] (Dec 21, 1810, Nürnberg – Dec 20, 1877, Erlangen). Hofmann was influenced by proponents of the revival movement, during his early schooling by Karl Ludwig Roth and during his studies in Erlangen from 1827 onward by C. Krafft and K. v. Raumer. He continued his studies in Berlin in 1829 (esp. with L. (v.) Ranke), and became a teacher at a Gymnasium in Erlangen after passing his exams in 1832. He obtained his Habilitation in 1838, became associate professor at Erlangen University in 1841, in Rostock in 1842, and returned to Erlangen in 1845, where he taught until his death. Hofmann…


(159 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[English Version] Stier, Rudolf Ewald (17.3.1800 Fronstadt, Niederschlesien – 16.12.1862 Eisleben), gehört in den Zusammenhang der Erweckungsbewegung nach 1817. Geprägt durch die Romantik (lit. Tätigkeit) und die Burschenschaften fand er 1818 Anschluß an F.A. G. Tholuck und an die erweckten Kreise um H.E. Baron v. Kottwitz und datierte auf 1818 seine Bekehrung. S. war als akademischer Lehrer (u.a. in Barmen-Wichlinghausen) tätig. Sein Interesse galt der Exegese, und hier zunächst der Textgrundlage (…


(169 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[English Version] Thomasius, Gottfried (26.7.1802 Egenhausen – 24.1.1875 Erlangen), gehört in das Feld der »Erlanger Schule« (Prof. dort seit 1842). Th. betrachtete die Schrift, das kirchl. Bekenntnis und das individuelle Bewußtsein des Heils (Glaube) als inhaltlich identische Manifestationen des Christentums; er entwarf seine um die Christologie konzentrierte und deren Implikationen entfaltende Dogmatik (Christi Person und Werk, 5 [Teil-]Bde., 1852–1861) methodisch als Explikation des durch Christ…


(180 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[English Version] Schlink, Edmund (6.3.1903 Darmstadt – 20.5.1984 Heidelberg), einer der führenden Teilnehmer am ökum. Dialog nach dem 2. Weltkrieg. Der Beginn seiner akademischen Tätigkeit fiel in die Zeit des Kirchenkampfes; er war in vielen Funktionen für die Bekennende Kirche tätig und lehrte zunächst in Bethel; nach der Aufhebung der Theol. Hochschule durch die Gestapo 1939 war er Pfarrer und folgte nach dem Krieg einem Ruf nach Heidelberg, wo er das erste Ökum. Institut aufbaute. Seine vielfä…
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