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The Word in the World

Schneider, Sandra (2010) The Word in the World. In: The Melbourne College of Divinity Centenary Conference, 5-7 July 2010, Trinity College, Melbourme, Australia.

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    Abstract

    This article addresses the topic "the Word in the World" by seeking to clarify both concepts in the light of biblical usage and the present situation of believers. While "the world" features quite prominently in the New Testament, the understanding of the motif throughout Christian history has reflected more the Church's experience with its socio-cultural and religious context rather than the New Testament usage. The largely defensive attitude to the world that was the stance of the Roman church in reaction to the Reformation and Enlightenment was radically challenged at the Second Vatican Council, offering the chance to re-orientate the Church towards an understanding of "world" in a less objectified sense as an imaginative construction of reality. From the New Testament, notably the Gospel of John, at least four understandings of "world" emarge, of which only one is negative. The Synoptic tradition, in particular the parable of the Weeds among the Wheat, addresses the issue of evil by including the world as one reality in which good and evil are pervasively intertwined such that believers can never isolate themselves over against or out of the world but must contest, with the power of the Gospel, the distructive dynamics at work in God's good world. The Word, which believers are commissioned to proclaim to the world, is not first and foremost a message but Jesus, the Word Incarnate, who is both with us and one of us, while also the locus of God's salvific work within the world. The particularity of the Incarnation, especially as the Wisdom of God incarnate, rather than a scandal or limitation in a pluralistic world, can open us up to the infinite mystery of God mediated by all religious traditions. The Incarnation also designates our humanity as the locus of God's Presence in the world, enabling belienver's, as Christ's body, to be the Word of God resounding in the world.

    Item Type: Conference Papers (Lecture)
    Additional Information: Sandra Schneider was a Keynote Speaker at the MCD Centenary Conference.
    Repository Version: Metadata Only
    Keywords (separated by commas): History of the Catholic Church, Reformation, Church and World, 'Second Vatican Council', 'parable of the wheat and the tares'
    Fields of Research: 22 Philosophy and Religious Studies > 2204 Religion and Religious Studies > 220401 Christian Studies (incl. Biblical Studies and Church History)
    22 Philosophy and Religious Studies > 2204 Religion and Religious Studies > 220405 Religion and Society
    Socio-Economic Objective: C Society > 95 Cultural Understanding > 9504 Religion and Ethics > 950404 Religion and Society
    Type of Activity: Pure Basic Research
    Subject Area(s): B - New Testament
    C - Church History
    Association with University of Divinity: Pacifica
    Depositing User: Cate Headey
    Date Deposited: 22 Dec 2010 14:29
    Last Modified: 01 Nov 2011 13:38
    URI: http://repository.divinity.edu.au/id/eprint/575

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