Union with Christ? : re-reading Calvin as constructive proposal for Korean Calvin reception

Choi, Sung Rual (2015-12)

Thesis (PhD)--Stellenbosch University, 2015.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The starting point of this dissertation is the presence of a theological deficit regarding the reception of Calvin’s “union with Christ (unio cum Christo)” thought. It is argued that the notion of “union with Christ” should not be treated merely as a doctrinal theme within soteriology and the doctrine of the Sacraments but as having an interrelationship with various other important doctrines in Calvin’s theology, thus functioning as a core thought. Hence this dissertation re-interprets and re-evaluates the original scope, content and meaning of Calvin’s use of the notion of “union with Christ,” attending in the process to the various metaphorical expressions and theological meanings associated with this notion. This research dissertation attempted to recover the importance of what is described as Calvin’s “union with Christ” thought in the following manner. Firstly, it examines the main causes for the reduction of the scope and importance of “union with Christ” thought in Korean Reformed theology and the American Reformed theology (or Calvinistic theology) that influenced it. Secondly, it also examines more concretely the various metaphorical expressions and theological meanings associated with “union with Christ” thought. Lastly, the study strives to verify systematically that the “union with Christ” thought (or ‘union with the Triune God’ thought) functions as a core thought in Calvin’s theology. This is done through the explication of the close inter-relationship between the structure of the Institutes and “union with Christ” thought, as well as by indicating the way in which “union with Christ” thought is interrelated with other important doctrines in Calvin’s theology.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die vertrekpunt van hierdie verhandeling is die stelling dat daar in gereformeerde teologie ‘n reduksie ten opsigte van Calvyn se gedagte van die unio cum Christo (die eenheid of vereniging met Christus) bestaan. Die studie argumenteer dat “eenheid met Christus” nie alleenlik as ‘n leerstellige tema binne die soteriologie en die leerstelling oor die sakramente in Calvyn se teologie beskou moet word nie, maar dat die interrelasie van hierdie tema met ander belangrike leerstellige temas deeglik en duidelik verreken moet word. “Eenheid met Christus” funksioneer dus as ‘n kerngedagte in Calvyn se teologie. Daarom herinterpreer en herevalueer hierdie proefskrif die oorspronklike reikwydte, inhoud en betekenis van Calvyn se gebruik van die “eenheid met Christus”- gedagte, en in die proses word onder meer in fyn besonderhede aan die onderskei metaforiese uitdrukkings en teologiese temas wat met hierdie gedagte gepaardgaan, aandag gegee. Die navorsing poog in die proses om die belangrikheid van Calvyn se “eenheid met Christus”-gedagte te herontdek langs die volgende weë: Ten eerste word daar gekyk na die reduksie in reikwydte, betekenis en belangrikheid van Calvyn se “eenheid met Christus”- gedagte in Koreaanse gereformeerde teologie, sowel as in die Amerikaanse gereformeerde (of Calvinistiese) teologie wat so ‘n groot impak daarop gehad het. In die tweede plek word daar heel konkreet en in groot detail na die onderskeie metaforiese uitdrukkings en teologiese betekenisse wat met die “eenheid met Christus”-gedagte geassosieer word, ondersoek ingestel. Derdens poog die studie om oortuigend op ‘n sistematiese wyse aan te toon dat “eenheid met Christus” as ‘n kerngedagte in Calvyn se teologie funksioneer. Dit word gedoen deur aan te toon dat daar ‘n noue interrelasie tussen die struktuur van die Institusie en die “eenheid met Christus”-gedagte is, sowel as deur die noue interrelasie tussen hierdie gedagte en ander belangrike dogmatiese loci in Calvyn se teologie aan te dui.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/97797
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