Original Research

What hope is there – for Klaus?

Ernst M. Conradie
Verbum et Ecclesia | Vol 39, No 1 | a1847 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ve.v39i1.1847 | © 2018 Ernst M. Conradie | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 18 February 2018 | Published: 18 June 2018


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Abstract

This contribution engages with Klaus Nürnberger’s eschatology as expressed in his Invitation to Systematic Theology. It suggests that his notion of Christian hope has to be understood in terms of the triad of core concepts that he offers, namely creative power, benevolent intentionality and a vision of comprehensive optimal well-being. These are dialectically related as thesis, antithesis and synthesis. Moreover, this dialectic comes to expression in his understanding of faith in the Triune God, namely as belief in God against God, God as Saviour against God as Creator. Two questions regarding the vision of comprehensive optimal well-being are raised in conversation with Nürnberger: Firstly, is the content of Christian hope focused on optimal well-being itself, that God’s project will prevail, that the vision itself will prevail or that God will prevail. Can these be treated as rough synonyms? Secondly, what are the implications of the emphasis on God’s Word for Nürnberger’s eschatology? Does his emphasis on conceptual clarification not allow a form of idealism that undermines his own emphasis on the historical? If so, is there sufficient room for the consummation of all things as part of the narrative of God’s work?

Intra- and interdisciplinary implications: This contribution is of an intradisciplinary nature and is located within the field of Christian systematic theology. It is a review article that engages critically with the position on eschatology adopted by Professor Klaus Nürnberger in his two-volume work Faith in Christ Today (2016).

Keywords

Christianity; Consummation; Creation; Eschatology; Hope; Salvation; Klaus Nürnberger

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