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Confessionality And Identity Of The Church—A Reformed Perspective

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Chapter Summary

This chapter investigates the earliest Christian confessions in the New Testament. New Testament reveals the presence of what has been called praesymbola or prefigurations of doctrinal expressions. The early church lived in a context of Roman imperial rule. The Christian faith is not merely theoretical talk without any obligation. Faith requires a commitment and a decision. A confession is much more than merely having a theory about Jesus or simply knowing something about God. A real confession of faith is a spiritual event. During the post-Reformation period, the term 'dogma' gradually took on the meaning of doctrine that has officially been declared by a church as having been revealed by God. The Reformation came about through the rediscovery of the fact that humans cannot reach God of their own accord. The true identity of the church will be protected and created anew by the Word of God.

Keywords: Christian faith; Church; confessions; dogma; God; identity; New Testament; praesymbola

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