Tendencies in Contemporary Baptist Ecclesiology: Paul Fiddes and the Concept of Covenant
The article proposes analysis of ecclesiological views of Paul S. Fiddes, contemporary British Baptist theologian. It focuses on the concept of “covenant ecclesiology”. The covenant ecclesiology is grounded on theology and historical practice of covenant and its contemporary reception, biblical concept of koinonia which is interpreted as participation in the life of the Triune God, and biblical image of the Church as the Body of Christ. The aggregate of these views significantly expands and enriches traditional Baptist ecclesiology. Particularly, covenant ecclesiology helps to look anew at ecclesial associations beyond local church, so called “wider ecclesial structures” (associations, unions, conventions) and to interpret them as one of the forms of being Church and visual manifestation of unity in Christ. In the concluding section the article points to the implications of covenant ecclesiology for wider ecclesial structures: theology of trust which is the basic characteristic of relations among members of the covenant; pastoral oversight (episkope), which is the result of communion or covenant; and participation in Christ’s mission as continuation of his presence and acts in the world through the Church.
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Copyright (c) 2020 Oleksandr GEYCHENKO
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THEOLOGICAL REFLECTIONS: EASTERN EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF THEOLOGY
ISSN 2521-179X (Online), ISSN 2415-783X (Print)