Nie “ja”omdat die VGKSA ‘n geweer teen die NGK se kop hou nie!

Ek het al hier en hier en hier en hier iets geskryf oor die proses waar die NG Kerk Artikel 1 van die kerkorde wil wysig. Ons kerkraad het ook besluit om aan die gemeente aan te beveel om “ja” te ste, Die gemeente sal in Meimaand hieroor stem.

Een van die redes waarom mense aangemoedig word om “nee” te stem vir die wysiging van Kerkorde Artikel 1 sou dan wees omdat die VGKSA (Verenigende Gereformeerde Kerk in Suid Afrika) ‘n geweer teen ons kop sou hou en ons wil dwing om Belhar as belydenisskrif te aanvaar. Hulle dreig dat as die NG Kerk nie Belhar as belydenisskrif aanvaar nie, is daar geen sin daarin om die gesprek oor eenwording enigsins voort te sit nie. Juis in hierdie tyd het die moderator van die VGKSA dit weereens so beklemtoon. Gaan lees gerus die artikel hier. Wanneer die VGKSA dus in die media uitsprake oor hierdie saak maak, dan sê hulle net wat hulle Algemene SInode besluit het en wat hulle standpunt is. Hierdie is ‘n onderhandelingsituasie en daar gaan nog baie gesprek hieroor gevoer word.

Verskeie verteenwoordigers van die NG Kerk het dan ook al by verskeie geleenthede gesê dat hulle eerstens nie verstaan dat Belhar ‘n geweer teen die kop is nie, en tweedens dat die doel van hierdie proses nie is om die VGK tevrede te stel nie, maar omdat die Algemene SInode daarvan oortuig was dat die Belhar-belydenis ‘n tydige belydenis is.

Ek het weer gaan kyk na die notule van die laaste vergadering van die Vier Moderature van die NG Kerk-familie (NG Kerk in Afrika, Reformed Church in Africa, die NG Kerk en die Verenigende Gereformeerde Kerk in Suid Afrika). (DIe Wes-Transaal Sinode van die NG Kerk het die notule as deel van hulle dokumentasie versprei. DIt kan hier gelees word.) Die vergadering het plaasgevind op 6-7 Augustus 2014. Dr Jerry Pillay was die voorsitter by die vergadering en het gevra waarom die Belharbelydenis ‘n struikelblok is en hoe almal geakkomodeer kan word. In reaksie hierop het elke kerk hulle standpunt gestel.

Die NG Kerk in Afrika se standpunt hieroor is:

2.1 The proposals and requests from our synod, initially for a continuation of the discussions between us and URCSA on Belhar Confession, and later for a multilateral discussion of the four churches concerning Belhar Confession, were not accepted by the URCSA or the DRC with the result that we were not part of that discussions.

2.2 All that we can say therefore is that

(a) we respect any agreements between DRC and URCSA concerning Belhar Confession as agreements between them

(b) Belhar Confession, however, is not a confession of the DRCA

(c) It is for the other churches to indicate how we will be accommodated in one church without Belhar Confession.

Die Reformed Church in Africa se standpunt is as volg:

*1 there was no consultation with them in the drafting of Belhar *2 they rejected the notion that the acceptance of Belhar is a precondition for reunification *3 they reminds the meeting of what Achterbergh decided in April 2007:

1. CONFESSIONAL BASIS

The following were accepted as the first points of consensus between the four churches:

1. Belhar should not be a precondition for church unity.

2. That we continue discussions between all four churches with the purpose of agreeing to the Biblical content of Belhar and writing a joint commentary on it. That will make it possible that in a new kerkverband the Biblical content of Belhar can be preached, taught and used in ministry.

3. In the forming of a new kerkverband the doctrinal basis must accomodate all four churches, synods and congregations without forcing anybody to accept or to abandon Belhar.

4. We respect the value that Belhar as a confession has for URCSA. The following points reflect consensus between URCSA and the DRC. The RCA and DRCA will be willing to consider it after taking part in the process agreed to in point 2:

5. In a new kerkverband Belhar will be included in the confessional basis as a fourth confession, but it will not be expected of members and ministers who are not ready or willing to underwrite [accept] it as a confession.

6. The growing towards full acceptance of Belhar is an integral part of the processes of the new kerkverband.

Die NG Kerk se standpunt is as volg:

1 from early 90’s they said Belhar is in accordance with Scripture and other creeds and confessions of the Reformation

2 the DRC clearly aligned themselves with the major themes of Belhar

3 the DRC’s journey is because “we” want to have Belhar because they are convinced of the content and the message for our time *4 they are now taking their proposed new Art 1 to synods and local churches:

1. The Dutch Reformed Church is based on the Bible as the holy and infallible Word of God.

2.1 The doctrine which the Church confesses in agreement with the Word of God, is expressed in the ecumenical creeds, namely the Apostles’ Creed, the Nicene Creed and the Creed of Athanasius; and the Three Forms of Unity, namely the Belgic Confession, the Heidelberg Catechism and the Canons of Dordt.

2.2 The Belhar Confession is part of the confessional basis of the Church, in a way that allow members, office bearers and assemblies of the church to confess it as in agreement with the Word of God, as well as members, office bearers and assemblies of the church that do not subscribe to it as a confession.

3. The Church accepts her calling to always confess her faith and that the expansion of her confessional basis should occur without force.

Die VGKSA het op hierdie punt hulle standpunt as volg gestel:

1 they appreciate the openness of the other three churches on their positions regarding the Confession of Belhar, and they respect the three denominations’ positions

2 they interpret the Achterbergh comment as not for now but eventually in the new reunited church

3 they share the decision of their GSC of Nov 2013 (pt 7 and 8):

7. The GSC decides the following more adequate basis of dealing with the Confession and Church reunification.

7.1 The Confession of Belhar is recognized as the confession with the same authority as the formularies of unity;

7.2 The content of the Confession of Belhar, namely visible church unity, true reconciliation in Christ overcoming racial divisions in Southern Africa and the world and God’s preferential option for the poor-is proposed for full subscription by every office in the new re-unified Church;

7.3 The content of the Confession of Belhar will be taught in catechism, preaching, and theological education and embodied in a transforming Church;

7.4 Every minister/office in the Church is given time of one recess after re-unification to consider and subscribe to the confession of Belhar formally;

7.5 Ministers that have an objection against the Confession on a particular point be allowed to submit a gravamen while they continue to be bound to their oath not to propagate their objections in any way;

7.6 Every new minister will be licensed only after subscribing to all four Confessions.

8. The GSC commits itself anew not to let go of the DRC, but to continue on the mutually critical and mutually affirmative journey on which we have embarked together, as spelled out in the Road map to Church Re-Unification and the Memorandum of Agreement.

Op die ou end het die vergadering besluit dat almal dokumente met mekaar sal uitruil met die oog op die pad vorentoe. Uit die notule blyk dit dat beide die NGKA en die RCA nog ‘n redelike pad het om te stap alvorens Belhar deur hulle aanvaar sal word. Die NGKA is ten gunste van eenheid maar wil weet hoe hulle geakkomodeer kan word sonder dat Belhar deel van hulle belydenisgrondslag is. Die RCA het dit ook duidelik gemaak dat Belhar nie deel van die belydenisgrondslag wil hê nie. Die NG Kerk se standpunt is dat daar sedert die negentiger jare reeds teologiese eenstemmigheid met Belhar is.

Inderdaad is Belhar ‘n ononderhandelbare punt op die agenda vir die VGKSA maar beide die RCA en NGKA het probleme daarmee as dit op hierdie wyse hanteer word.

Die NG Kerk soek dus nie ‘n “ja” omdat die VGKSA ons dreig nie of ter wille van kerkeenheid nie. DIe NG Kerk soek ‘n “ja” omdat die Algemene Sinode daarvan oortuig was en is dat die belydenis in ooreenstemming met die belydenisskrifte en die Woord van God is. Die NG Kerk voel egter ook sterk daaroor dat belydenisvorming en -aanvaarding sonder dwang moet geskied.

4 Kommentaar

Filed under Die Christelike Lewe

4 responses to “Nie “ja”omdat die VGKSA ‘n geweer teen die NGK se kop hou nie!

  1. Christelle

    Dit is n gewigtige saak Attie. Jammer as ek jou ontstel het, of seer gemaak het. Ek kan die ongelukkigheid in jou lees . Om die waarheid te se ek het die ergste verwag . Kom ons sit maar die strydbyle(pistool) neer en maak eerder vrede.

    Hoop al die Lesers het n baie Geseende Paastyd gehad.

  2. Die NG Kerk in Afrika sê ook:
    The DRCA feels that they were not part of the drafting of Belhar – it is not fair to expect them to accept. It is not “our” confession. It was also written from the background of negative experiences.
    Will it really address the grass root pains and needs of churches? The DRCA is fully willing to continue discussion.

    Belhar is gebore uit negatiwiteit en ek is bevrees die vrug daarvan is vêrdere negatiwiteit van die meerderheid NG lidmate met wie ek daaroor gesels het.

    Die Reformed Church in Africa sê ook:
    *4 Belhar is not in conflict with Bible, but they see it as a declaration
    *5 their wish was for a discussion and a commentary on the Belhar Confession.

    Belhar as ‘n verklaring maak dalk meer sin…. Ek sien dit nie as ‘n belydenis op gelyke voet met die Drie Formuliere van Eenheid nie.

    In die “Memorandum of Agreement” tussen die VGKSA en die NG Kerk, geteken op 10 April 2013, wat handel oor Belhar en kerkeenheid is die volgende ooreengekom:
    4. On the Confession of Belhar
    4.1 We agree that the Confession of Belhar will be taken up in the confessional basis of the reunited church.
    4.2 We understand that the Dutch Reformed Church decided to make the Confession of Belhar part of the confessional basis of the Dutch Reformed Church in a church orderly way and we also understand that it proposed to do it in the following way:

    En dan word die proses waarmee ons nou besig is uiteengesit. Die VGKSA hoef dus nie ‘n geweer teen die NGK se kop te hou nie, die moderatuur het klaar so ‘n ooreenkoms geteken. Nou moet die lidmate net besluit of hulle saamstem…

    • Gerrit, ek dink nie mens kan ‘n dokument wat die begin van ‘n gesprek is so lees nie. Ek sien dit weer as dat die NG Kerk juis nie die “geweer teen die kop” situasie aanvaar nie, maar op hierdie manier uitdrukking gee aan iets wat al amper 20 jaar terug deur die NG Kerk se Algemene SInode as teologies aanvaarbaar bestempel is, deur dit deel van die belydenisgrondslag te (probeer) maak. As dit nie werk nie, dan het dit nie gewerk nie. Ek praat weer met baie NG Kerk lidmate wat baie hartseer is dat ons nie eens ons weg oopsien om vir ander ruimte te gee om die Belhar belydenis deel van hulle lewe te maak nie. Natuurlik is enige iemand welkom om Belhar as ‘n verklaring te sien, maar wat van die wat dit graag anders sou wou sien.

  3. 2/3 meerderheid is nogals ‘n GROOT meerderheid… so ‘n gemeente kan eintlik meer ja’s as nee’s hê en steeds NEE stem.

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