Verbum et Ecclesia (Apr 1996)

Moet ons die Belydenis van belhar (1986) as 'n nuwe Belydenisskrif aanvaar?

  • A.C.J. van Niekerk

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 17, no. 2
pp. 443 – 455


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Can� we� accept� the� Confession� of Belhar� (1986)� as� a� new� doctrinal confession? The possibility exists that the Dutch Refonned Church� (DRC)� could stop the process of� church� unity� in� its� own family� due� to� its� refusal� to� accept The Confession 1986 (Confession of� Belhar) as afourth refonned confession.� In this� article� the� question� of� acceptance� is� examined from four perspectives and� it� is� concluded� that� it should be� accepted� if� the DRC wants� to� gain credibility.� First� the� nature,� characteristics� and� history� of confessions oblige the Church� in difficult situations� to adopt new confessions.� Secondly the history of� the DRC and its family makes� it� imperative� to� overcome� the gulf between� believers from� the� same� tradition� through� the� "language� of confession".� Thirdly� the main� contents of� the� confession� is biblically sound while absolutism� of� different kinds� is� avoided.� Lastly� it� is� argued� that� the confession� satisfies� the� requirement� for� both� contextual� relevance� and universal applicability.