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Is Not All Contextual Understanding of the Gospel Syncretism?

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This critical question includes the ideas: 1) that the right understanding of the gospel is pure and should be without influence of other worldview traditions or cultures; 2) the rejection of all forms of syncretism as illegitimate; 3) that some have the authority to judge between good and wrong understandings of the gospel. The article rejects both the idea that only one interpretation of the gospel is legitimate, and the idea that it is impossible to apply criteria for good and wrong contextualization; and so develops an argument in favor of a 'weak' form of syncretism that is plausible in both the tradition and the context, and understandable by the hearers of the Word.

Affiliations: 1: Professor of Philosophy of Religion; VU University Amsterdam


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