Splashing tradition: The use of tradition and church history in recent German baptismal theologies as seen in the views of Th. Schneider, W. Pannenberg, and A. Heinze

Schmid, Joachim Frank (2019) Splashing tradition: The use of tradition and church history in recent German baptismal theologies as seen in the views of Th. Schneider, W. Pannenberg, and A. Heinze. PhD thesis, Middlesex University / London School of Theology.

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Abstract

This thesis analyses the use of tradition and church history in the baptismal views of the recent German theologians Theodor Schneider (Roman Catholic, born 1930), Wolfhart Pannenberg (Lutheran, 1928-2014), and André Heinze (Baptist, 1961-2013).

The differences in the practice and understanding of Baptism among different denominations show that views of Baptism are not only shaped by Scripture but also by external presumptions that can be traced to different understandings of tradition and church history. This thesis, therefore, investigates and evaluates how different views of Baptism in the context of recent German theology use tradition and church history to develop and constitute their position, in order to assess the influence of different views of tradition and church history on baptismal views.

To achieve its goal this thesis presents a detailed examination of the selection and usage of explicit references to tradition and (church) history found in each author’s main work on Baptism, as well as an analysis of particular important implicit reflections of the author’s denominational tradition. Generally, it is seen that all three authors value and use tradition in a constructive non-polemic way, while also being critical of tradition as far as possible given their denominational constraints. From the authors’ use of explicit and implicit references to tradition their views of tradition and church history are deduced, which demonstrates the influence of each author’s view of tradition on his baptismal view. This research concludes that even though each author’s understanding of tradition and church history surfaces in their baptismal views, exegetical convergence in method and result, as well as ecumenical progress regarding the understandings of tradition, both alleviate the influence of tradition. This illustrates the importance of the consideration of the understanding of tradition and church history in the ecumenical dialogue about Baptism.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Research Areas: B. > Theses
C. Collaborative Partners > London School of Theology
Item ID: 26791
Depositing User: Brigitte Joerg
Date Deposited: 12 Jun 2019 08:00
Last Modified: 20 Jun 2019 20:49
URI: https://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/26791

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