Original Research

What does it mean to be Reformed? An answer from a worldview perspective

B.J. van der Walt
In die Skriflig/In Luce Verbi | Vol 35, No 2 | a561 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v35i2.561 | © 1970 B.J. van der Walt | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 08 August 2001 | Published:

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B.J. van der Walt, Department of Philosophy, Potchefstroom University for CHE, South Africa

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Abstract

The aim of this article is to determine – from a worldview perspective – the hallmark of being Reformed. As an introduction a few current, unsatisfactory efforts at revealing the genius of the Reformed faith are mentioned.

The main section of the article provides, firstly, a typology of five basic, recurring worldviews during the past 2000 years of Christianity. Among them only the Reformational worldview is not plagued by an inherent dualism. Secondly, the differences among these worldviews are illustrated by way of their concrete, practical implications for real-life issues. In the third place, the dualistic Christian worldviews are critically evaluated in the light of the Biblical revelation of inter alia its message about the kingdom of God.

In conclusion the distinctive character of being Reformed is described, both negatively (as the rejection of dualistic worldviews), and positively (as the rediscovery of an integral, holistic worldview, inspired by the Biblical idea of the kingdom of God). Such a worldview should always be practised in humility and never lead to triumphalism, because we often do not apply it consistently and especially because our fallible human efforts may not be identified with the coming of God’s kingdom.

Keywords

Christian Worldviews; Typology Of Five Basic Worldviews; Dualistic Worldviews; Reformational Worldview

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