Review Article

Belangrikheid van troos in die Heidelbergse Kategismus

Antionette Janse van Rensburg
In die Skriflig/In Luce Verbi | Vol 58, No 1 | a2999 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v58i1.2999 | © 2024 Antionette Janse van Rensburg | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 08 July 2023 | Published: 25 January 2024

About the author(s)

Antionette Janse van Rensburg, Department of Systematic and Historical Theology, Faculty of Theology and Religion, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa

Abstract

The importance of comfort in the Heidelberg Catechism. It is known that the Heidelberg Catechism is one of the many catechisms that originated during the 16th-century Reformation. It is also known that the authors of the Heidelberg Catechism made use of existing catechisms. The Heidelberg Catechism consists of three sections, with the famous introduction dealing with us as humans our only comfort in life and death, and that our body and soul belong to our Saviour, Jesus Christ. Knowledge of this consolation is divided into three sections: knowledge of our sin and misery, knowledge of our deliverance, and knowledge of how we should be thankful for our deliverance. Throughout the Catechism, the theme of comfort plays an important role. Furthermore, the core of the Heidelberg Catechism deals with our comfort as human beings, as Barth formulates the question: ‘Who is the person who is comforted and how is this comfort given and what does it consist of?’ The question, ‘How is humankind comforted?’ is also a central question, with the answer that through Jesus Christ as our Saviour, we are comforted. Therefore, this article focuses on the importance of comfort as a central theme in the Heidelberg Catechism, and even though we know that comfort plays an important role in the Catechism, it is important to be reminded thereof. This article provides a short overview on the Heidelberg Catechism and focuses on the importance of comfort. The findings of the article are clear that comfort plays an important role in the Heidelberg Catechism and to be comforted by Jesus Christ, gives us peace in our everyday life, as stated in the Heidelberg Catechism. This is not new information, but in the light of the fact that the celebration of the Reformation is around the corner, it is important to remember and to celebrate the Heidelberg Catechism and the importance thereof in Reformed theology.

Contribution: This article focuses on the importance of comfort throughout the Heidelberg Catechism by means of a literature study, highlighting the theme of comfort and the importance thereof. The emphasis on comfort makes the Heidelberg Catechism a unique document and this gives the Catechism its own accent.


Keywords

Heidelberg Catechism; three-part structure; comfort, ecumenical; sin; redemption; gratitude.

Sustainable Development Goal

Goal 4: Quality education

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