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Original Research

The Political Impact of the Festival - Biblical Statements

Georg Braulik

Verbum et Ecclesia; Skrif en Kerk: Vol 20, No 2 (1999), 326-339. doi: 10.4102/ve.v20i2.604

Submitted: 10 August 1999
Published:  10 August 1999


Liturgy possesses a socio-critical potential which greatly surpasses political activism. It bypasses the systems of a "complex society", such as socialisation, communication and economics, through its factual logic which stands independent of faith. This political fo-rce is already developed by the feast on Sinai, to which Israel is lead out of Egypt (Ex 5:1-3). There, Israel receives the Torah, in order that its life as the people or community of Yahweh may be successful in the Promised Land. The community is to renew itself on occasion of the three pilgrimage festivals. For this purpose, Deuteronomy developed two basic types of popular liturgy within the scope of its theology of the people of God. The first is constituted by the passion commemoration of the passover (Dt 16:1-8). It aims at the social liberation of everyone in Israel, in commemorating their being lead out of Egyptian slavery. The second type is presented in the Feast of Weeks and the Feast of Tabernacles (16:9-12, 13-15). They initiate a fraternal society devoid of poverty, and already realise this in a realistic-symbolic way, through the communal meal of rejoicing in which all are to participate before Yahweh. According to this model, the eucharistic celebrative joy of the first Jerusalem congregation (Acts 2:44-46) reveals its community-changing force in the fact that "no poor were to be found any more" among the believers (Dt 15:4 in Acts 4:32-34).

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Georg Braulik, Wien



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ISSN: 1609-9982 (print) | ISSN: 2074-7705 (online)

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