CHEMNITZ’S EUCHARISTIC CHRISTOLOGY AS AN IMPULSE FOR ECUMENICAL DIALOGUE BETWEEN EAST AND WEST
(Chemnitzova eucharistická kristológia ako impulz pre ekumenický dialóg medzi východom a západom)
Abstract: Martin Chemnitz, an important second-generation, reformation theologian, combined Luther’s theological insights and exegetical skills with Melanchthon’s logical methods of argumentation in his patient search for ecumenical concord. His major theological contribution was his development of an historical method, which he used in his polemics, thus delineating the roots and context of legitimate ‘Gospel theology.’ This method is comprised of: (1) Biblical exegesis, (2) thorough research of the church’s tradition to guide exegesis (keeping the Scriptures as the ultimate authority in case of discrepancies or conflicting views), (3) dogmatic construction, and (4) apologetics. Chemnitz used this method in developing and using his Christological teaching in several key doctrines, including his doctrine of the Eucharist. Relying on what he called a “catholic consensus of the fathers,” Chemnitz extensively used the witness of the ancient fathers of the church – including Eastern church fathers, which distinguished him from other Protestant theologians of his time – as a legitimate source of Christology, as well as other important topics. This “catholic consensus” should be perceived as a further development of the tradition of biblical interpretation within the living organism – the ecumenical Body of Christ. The witness of biblical interpretation of the Christological passages as found in Cyril of Alexandria, John of Damascus, or Basil the Great is welded together with the words of institution, as found in the Gospels and in Paul, the apostle. Chemnitz’s approach carries a relevant ecumenical potential for the dialogue between Eastern and Western branches of Christianity.
Authors: Valčo, Michal
Source: Konštatínove listy, 2017, vol.: 10, issue: 2, pages: 141-150 (PDF file)
Keywords: MARTIN CHEMNITZ, CHRISTOLOGY, EUCHARIST, PERICHORESIS, COMMUNICATIO IDIOMATUM, BIBLICAL HERMENEUTIC, WORDS OF INSTITUTION, TRADITION