Original Research

Comedy of commerce: Towards a wonderful exchange in land reform?

P. Paul Kruger
In die Skriflig/In Luce Verbi | Vol 53, No 1 | a2414 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v53i1.2414 | © 2019 Petrus Paulus Kruger | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 01 October 2018 | Published: 16 May 2019

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P. Paul Kruger, The Unit for Reformational Theology and the Development of the South African Society, Faculty of Theology, North West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa

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This article theologically explores the controversial issue of land reform, especially in South Africa, by probing a theatrical metaphoric framework – with its depth and holism. This will be done in order to articulate the deep Christian confessional notion of sanctorum communio [communion of the saints], having the unfathomable notion of admirabile commercium [wonderful commerce or exchange] at the centre of its twofold sense (communion of the sancta and sancti) as an alternative possibility acted out on a civil play stage (or in a public dramatic amphitheatre) of land reform that might be seen to be ‘performed’ in South Africa today. As deepest background to all problems of land greed and land stinginess, Christ’s short ‘parabolic play’ of the Rich Fool is brought into focus. The inquiry argues that the ‘wonderful exchange’ acted out in its inner and outer commerce with the sancta [Christ as the Fruit of the land and his gracious benefits of land-giving and land-flourishing] and circling out into the sancti [the commerce of the ecclesiastical, ‘theatrical company’ of people in freedom, equality and brotherhood] should, prompted by the Holy Spirit (also in his cosmic inhabitation), decentralise this ‘comedy of commerce’ further into public, civil communities or ‘companies’ of people-and-land, permeated by this commerce’s play of freedom, equality and brotherhood.


Communio sanctorum; Land reform; Theodrama; Mirifica commutation; Fruit of the land


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