NR. 1 – 2021

Rezumate Studii Teologice 2021.1

Pr. Prof. Dr. Dănuț POPOVICI – Predica (khutba) în Islam

Summary: Preaching Activity (khutba) in Islam

The aim of the present study is to capture the most representative landmarks of how the preaching of the word (preaching activity) has been and is currently perceived in the religious tradition of Islam. In Islam, preaching (khutba) is considered an integral part of a space that encompasses the Arab spirit in its various aspects, which can hardly be restricted to a strictly religious doctrinal context. This can be deduced from the fact that Islam, understood as a religious doctrine, has permeated the life of Islamic society as a whole (political, economic, cultural and social life). This is also the reason why careful research is needed into how the khutba, as a shaping and transmitting instrument, has contributed and continues to contribute to the doctrinal consolidation of the Islamic flourishing and its spread.

Since the pre-Islamic period, the Arab literary scene has been dominated by the preached word, the oratorical discourse, which was considered an essential pillar for the perpetuation and maintenance of the cohesion of the pre-Islamic Arab tribal society and later of the Islamic community (ummah). Whether or not the pre-Islamic oratorical tradition influenced preaching in Islam is an uncertain question, not yet accurately understood. What can be said, without a doubt, is that the earliest surahs transmitted by the Prophet Muhammad, preserved in the final part of the Qur’an, bear the imprint of the pre-Islamic style known as saj, a rhythmic, monotonous prose reminiscent of the ‘cooing of doves’. This is understandable, given that the Prophet of Islam grew up and matured in the spiritual and intellectual environment of the pre-Islamic area, where Judaism and Christianity, especially Monophysite and Nestorian, coexisted alongside the pagan pre-Islamic structures, hence the influence of these in the Qur’anic heritage.

The Prophet Muhammad departs somewhat from these traditions by suggesting two new tools, daʾwah and jihad, as means of spreading and consolidating Islamic domination, to which he gives a divine aura by mentioning them in the Qur’an. Although they differ in meaning and work, these two “tools” have a common goal: the spread and imposition of the Islamic message, either willingly through persuasion or violently in case of refusal.

The first tool, daʾwah, is used as a means of calling for acceptance or willing submission to the Islamic message. In the case of rejection or non-acceptance of this message, the second instrument, that of coercion, i.e. jihad, comes into play, which is based on the belief in the universality of Islam, in the sense that, along with the temporary political power, this religion must embrace the entire inhabited earth, if necessary, even by force, and this because everything belongs to Allah. Today, we are witnessing a reconsideration of these two precepts, which guided the Prophet Mohammed. Da’wah is becoming an instrument of missionary propaganda and jihad a struggle against vice and unbelief, although this new perspective is not generally accepted by all Muslims, many of them retain its traditional nuances.

The call or invitation to accept Islam (da’wah), addressed to non-Muslims, but also to Muslims in order to strengthen their faith, had and continues to have the speech, the spoken word or the sermon (khutba) as its essential tool. After the consolidation of Islamic doctrine, the sermon (khutba) has become one of the basic pillars of Islamic ritual throughout the ages, especially for the Friday noon religious service. It was usually recited during religious services on Friday noon, after prayer on feast days and during services in times of eclipse or drought. Sermons were also preached at weddings and on other important occasions. Although initially the language of the sermons was Arabic, other national languages are now used.

From a historical perspective, the sermon reached its peak only in the Middle Ages, in the context of the ideological confrontations taking place at the time. Preaching would begin to take on different doctrinal forms depending on the needs and contexts in which it was delivered. The dominant form, however, remains the rhythmic sermon, rich in metaphors and figures of speech. At the same time, we see the practice of writing down sermons and the development of a true homiletic discipline, detailing the canonical rules to be observed by the preacher, the times dedicated to the sermon and, of course, the obligatory content of each sermon.

Recent research in the field of Arabic oratory attempts to decipher a direct fili­ation of Islamic preaching with pre-Islamic pagan oratorical traditions, overlooking possible influences from the Jewish, Byzantine Christian (Eastern Orthodox) and Syriac (Monophysite/Nestorian) areas, which were in fact present in the area where Islam was born and structurally shaped and which the Prophet Muhammad knew, if not in detail, at least in passing. It is certain that the foundation of Islamic oratory must be deciphered in direct relation to the da’wah, while also taking into account the environment in which Islam spread.

In addition to canonically prescribed sermons or those related to the practice or tradition (sunna) of the Prophet, an important place is occupied by sermons calling and guiding to a higher moral life (khutab al-waʿz wa-l-irshad), developing three major themes: a. Godliness/piousness and submission; b. Imminence of death; c. The world here and the world hereafter. They fluctuate between two poles, fear or dread on the one hand, and submission or docility on the other, while also including refe­rences to a number of virtues of a human nature that involve avoiding wrongdoing for fear of divine judgment, for God sees and knows all.

Preaching (khutba), as the object of the present study, calls for a more detailed and in-depth knowledge of the Islamic phenomenon, under its multiple manifestations and activities. Alongside Judaism and Christianity, Islam is one of the three great monotheistic religions, but above all it is a religious system we are surrounded by. It is therefore up to us to prepare the ground, not so much for confrontation, but above all for peaceful coexistence. Preparing such an atmosphere involves better knowledge and open and honest dialogue. This is only possible to the extent that we gain a deeper and more constructive understanding of its doctrinal structures and its perception of the world and universal human values.

Pr. Conf. Dr. Lucian FARCAȘIU – Praznicul Bunei Vestiri. Istoricul, evoluția și desfășurarea evenimentului, reflectate în imnografia sărbătorii

Summary: Feast of Annunciation. The History, Evolution and Development of the Event as Reflected in the Hymnography of the Feast

The present study addresses the issue of the history and evolution of the Feast of the Annunciation, and then refers to the unfolding of this event in the economy of the salvation of humanity, as reflected each year in the hymnography of the Annunciation on March 25. Annunciation represents the celebration of the day when the Holy Archangel Gabriel announced to the Holy Virgin that she would give birth to the Messiah (Luke 1:26-38), when the divine Child was conceived in the womb of the Holy Virgin, by the power of the Holy Spirit. That is why in the West this celebration was also called the Feast of the Lord’s Incarnation.

The Feast of the Annunciation is considered by theologians the Feast of our Savior Jesus Christ, and at the same time the Feast of the Theotokos. The Annunciation was celebrated even before the Synod of Ephesus (431) proclaimed the Holy Virgin as Theotokos, because at the beginning there was an old tradition of honoring her based on the accounts of Saint Luke the Evangelist. The literary sources of this Feast, i.e., the canonical gospels, were known for a long time, as well as their poetic interpretations in the apocryphal gospels (the Protoevangelium of Jacob and the Protoevangelium of Pseudo-Matthew), written at the end of the third century. These writings influenced the piety of the faithful and enriched the liturgical life of the Church, which took their insights, transposing them into the liturgical texts of these feasts.

After the Synod of Ephesus, both the teaching of the other Ecumenical Councils and the popular and patristic literature played a providential role, namely that of completing the celebration of Christ’s divinity with the celebration of His humanity. The liturgical year thus develops, as a whole, all these aspects of the Incarnation, emphasizing both the Son’s divinity and His humanity. Within these aspects related to the divine-human nature of the Savior, a fundamental role is played by the teaching about the Theotokos, which also contributed to the development of the Feasts dedicated to her.

The Feast of the Annunciation is the earliest Mariological feasts confirmed by sources. It is known that, since the fourth or fifth century, a church was built in Nazareth, on the site of the house where the Theotokos received the news from the angel that she would give birth to the divine Child. In honor of this feast, famous panegyrics of the great orators of the fifth century have been preserved, both from the Christian East and West, the composition of such solemn speeches continuing until the end of the patristic period in the eight century, but also the post-patristic period until the fifteenth century.

Beginning with the fifth century, the Annunciation has been celebrated in the East and the West, although initially on different dates. In the Christian East, the date of March 25 became the day of the Feast as soon as the Nativity of the Lord began to be celebrated everywhere on December 25, that is, since the first half of the fifth century. The liturgical difficulties were resolved by the Quinisext Council (in Trullo, 692), which authorized the celebration of the Annunciation during the Great Lent, even if this Feast coincides with Good Friday or Easter Sunday. Since then, this feast has been celebrated on March 25 in both the Christian West and the By­zantine East, although in the Christian West the Feast of the Annunciation became widespread much later.

Concerning the hymnography of the Annunciation, we must specify the fact that many texts from the hymnography of the Feast refer to the unfolding of this event in the economy of the salvation of humanity. The liturgical hymns of the Feast service show that the news of Christ’s birth was brought to the Virgin by the Archangel Gabriel, specifying the place and time in which this event took place and reproducing the entire dialogue between the angel and the Virgin, on the one hand, but also between the Virgin and the Archangel, on the other hand. The hymnography also captures the Virgin’s bewilderment and amazement at the news she receives from the angel. The angel Gabriel assures the Virgin Mother of the fact that her conception is beyond words, explaining to the Virgin the wonderful form in which she will conceive the Son of God, and confiding to her that her birth is beyond understanding, because it belongs to the mystery of God. The Virgin Mary receives the angel’s announcement faithfully, completely obeying the news brought by Gabriel. Other liturgical texts interpret the deep spiritual meaning of the Blessed moment and the relevance of this moment for the salvation of the entire humanity.

It can be easily observed from the above that the liturgical texts faithfully reproduce the entire biblical reference regarding the Annunciation event (Luke 1, 26-38), also offering small details and additions, which of course are not found in the biblical text, but which are an integral part of the Holy Tradition of the Church, a tradition that the hymnographers preserved and faithfully reproduced. On the other hand, the hymnography offers important elements of spiritual interpretation of the details related to the unfolding of the Annunciation, which shows that the liturgical text does not just take over, and then renders the biblical content of real events, but also enriches it with elements of spiritual interpretation and meaning.

Arhid. Drd. Nicolae STANCIU – Impozitarea Bisericii din Principatele Române, potrivit Regulamentelor Organice

Summary: Taxation of the Church in the Romanian Principalities According to the Organic Regulations

The period of the “Organic Regulations” in the Romanian Principalities (1831-1858) marked the Church’s subordination to the State and the transformation of clergy into State officials. At the same time, it represents the period of establishment of the socio-political life in Wallachia and Moldova on the fundamentals of a legal system specific to the developed societies of the time. It is a period of reforms necessary to adapt the secular and Church administration to the requirements of a society that was departing from the feudal era. This article aims to briefly present the life of the Church during the “Organic Regulations,” respectively, to analyse and interpret the provisions regarding its taxation, based on these regulations. The “Organic Regulations” define the Church-State relationship under the influence of French anticlericalism and the tsarist model of the enslavement of the Church by the State and, at the same time, include, as a novelty, regulations with a constitutional value that characterize a tax system based on modern principles. Despite slight differences in terminology, the two Regulations govern the same institutions in all fields, both for Wallachia and for Moldova, stating that this uniformity can serve to bring together two group of people whose identity of religion, origin, and position should keep them closely united in all circumstances. Although officially the “Regulations” were the work of commissions, made up of Romanian reformist boyars, and “revised” by Romanian Leading Assemblies, the two normative acts were, in fact, based on the so-called Warsaw instructions (1829). Furthermore, they were drafted under Governor Kiseleff’s direct involvement and approved by the Russian Government. Against the local customs, according to which the Church, through bishops and metropolitans, participates directly and effectively in the process of drafting the laws, the Church was not invited to participate in the composition of the Regulations, nor was it asked to give any opinion on the measures to regulate its organization and activity. This new aspect is not to be seen as abusive, explains the author, but rather is the direct consequence of the tsarist model concerning the relationship between the Russian State and the Russian Church. This paradigm implied the complete obedience of the Church by the State. The “Organic Regulations” establish the jurisdiction of the civil authorities in all matters concerning the organization and functioning of the Church: the organization and operation of the parishes and the income of the clergy coming from the taxation of the population. This new paradigm has produced many changes, which can be summarized synthetically as follows: (A) concerning bishops/metropolitan – these were to be elected by the Ordinary Assembly and validated by the ruler; their scope was restricted exclusively to church business, and their political activity was forbidden; (B) about priests – they were educated at the expense, and according to the rules of the State, they were ordained only with the recommendation of the Clergy’s Chancellor; the level of remuneration, the value of religious services, as well as other benefits specific to clergy (land in use, etc.), was regulated by the State. Therefore, whereas the obligations of priests, as retained by the “Regulations,” evokes an activity by which laws are complied with, and public services are provided, within the limits of the law, the “Regulations” confer them the status of State officials responsible for carrying out activities authorized by a public body, which are intended to meet social needs in the public interest; (C) monasteries and hermitages were created only with the agreement of the State authority; (D) the administration of Church assets was done by the State, which included most of the wealth in its budget. Despite their feudal background, the author considers that the “Regulations” organized the State power according to the modern principle of the separation of powers in the State. The constitutional nature of the “Regulations” shows their legal force in organizing the socio-political life of the Principalities, determining the entire hierarchy and thus constituting the judicial order in which the balance of the political and social forces of a country is exercised. The author notes that any act of constitutional value is essential because it provides a satisfactory basis for the assessment of mutual conduct within a community. The primacy of the Constitution is a quality that places it at the top of the political and legal institutions in a State organized society, making it the source of all regulations in economic, political, social, and legal fields. As far as the law is concerned, the supremacy of the Constitution expresses the overordered position of the fundamental law, within the law system and in the political system as a whole. Regarding the interactions between the tax system and Church functioning, the author considers that the fiscal policy concerning the Church pointed to the relationship between it and the State. This connection is rooted in the legal status of the public institutions of the State itself. According to the “Regulations,” the Church was the most significant contributor to State revenues, and this contribution was directly related to the concrete role played by the Church in the economy of the Principalities. Its revenues were seen as revenues of the State. This aspect fully confirms the assumption of the Church as part of the organization and functioning of the State. Starting with 1864, the State appropriated the assets of the Church, and thus the taxation of the economic activities of the Church has become devoid of purpose. The third chapter of both “Regulations” establishes, in an innovative way, the principles of a modern and unified tax system. Thus, according to the introductory provisions of Chapter III, it is proclaimed the cancellation of all the earlier existing organic rules and the organization of a new tax system, designed to implement and manage policies in this area in an integrated pattern. The abolition and reform of “old-age wounds,” concerning the tax system, also involved the removal of old fees that had as their subject the monasteries. In Romanian Principalities, the tax legislation was composed of a multitude of documents, periodically modified according to socio-political fluctuations, which did not allow a stable and integrated system to be developed. During the period, the relationship between the Church and the State, emphasizes the author, was faithful to the principles retained by the Holy Scripture: “Give back to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God.” Thus, as for the taxation of the Church, especially in the case of monasteries and bishops, considering that they owned a large part of the land and carried out economic activities in the Romanian countries, paid the specific taxes (depending on the economic activities run: mills, inns, factories, etc.) and in turn, taxed both for religious activity and by virtue of their status as owner estate. Under the “Regulations,” the functions of the tax system are broadly defined as they are in the present days: public financing expenditure, redistributing income and assets following the objective of fairness, while also having the function of stabilizing economic activities or correcting imbalances for economic efficiency. The tax is therefore defined and assumed as nowadays: a primary tool of public finances, supporting the primary function of allocating State resources. In short, the charge is the standard way of sharing federal spending among individuals. At the same time, the fiscal policy can generate and preserve political power, requiring that the notion of tax to be genuinely characterized by political and social attitudes. The “Regulatory Period” marks the end of the old Symphonia of Byzantine tradition, the setting up of Religious Ministry within the Government being the manifestation of the State’s interest in taking control of Church assets. Politically, although, according to the above-discussed era, bishops were legally part of all the legislative institutions, the metropolitan being their own President, they could not stop or influence the desire of the State to transform the Church from the regulatory partner of the society into a regulated subject. The study finds that some of the expenses and taxes, defining the Church-State affair nowadays, have the origin in the “Regulations.” As defined by these, among the State’s costs is the support of the Church’s organization and functioning, namely the help of the social-philanthropic activities carried out by the Church, an aspect which follows the criteria of modern legislation. Moreover, the Church is exempt from tax if it organizes and supports public activities – social-philanthropic – and thus relieves the State from the expenses of such events. Besides that, the State can endow the denominations with land areas, a matter which is set according to the requirements of contemporary law. The author reports that from the same period originates the routine of funding the Church’s income through the contributions of the believers. In this respect, the regulations contain provisions that enable the clergy to obtain “the income of the epitrachelion,” which is not subject to taxation. On top of that, the clergy was exempted from direct tax due to their profession, which involved providing spiritual assistance to the individuals within the community, that being considered a public affair. According to the same principle, by assuming the clergy as State officials, the priests were seen as public servants, responsible, among others, for weddings (marriage commissioner, civil status office), or having the task to reconcile hostile parties inside each community (judge). Besides, the priests were in charge of keeping the records containing the taxpayers within the community and with the release of supporting documents for some exemptions from the taxes. Therefore, concludes the author, the “Regulations” established a rule that, in many areas, is still valid today: the exemption of the Church from the payment of taxes, if it organizes and supports social activities, thus relieving the State of the expenses related to such events.

Drd. Florin ȘTEFAN – „Gustați și vedeți că bun este Domnul”. Omul – ființa chemată să preguste veșnicia

Summary: “Taste and See that the Lord Is Good”. Man – A Being Called to Foretaste Eternity

God gave man all of Creation, to feed on the great diversity of its gifts, thus experiencing His great goodness and love. Man is not a perfect being, but, on the contrary, a dependent, incomplete, fragile being in a perpetual hunger for meaning. That is why man was defined as an existence that seeks a purpose in life. After the fall, this fundamental need of his being can be corrupted by his biological inclinations or material realities, turning into lust and sinful dispositions. Any material or psychological object can become an object of lust, a goal of our excessive desire, through the irrational attachment we develop to it. Thus, it often happens that man feeds on irrational forms of the world (greed, avarice), and on distorted forms of food (bulimia, anorexia, addictions) on a psychophysiological and spiritual level. Feeling a frustrating insatiability, man tends to become the consumer par excellence of all that the world offers as “food”, compulsively seeking a sense of fulfillment. Seeking spiritual fulfillment in material pleasures clearly diverts the original divine command given to man: to “grow”, to “be” and to resemble God. The enslavement to what is external to him, through toxic attachments, alters his relationship with God and with others, demonstrating that man’s insensitivity to the needs and sufferings of his peers increases in direct proportion to the obsessive focus of his own needs and pleasures. The greatest drama is defined by the case when the human being tries his best to extract joy and life from hyper-consumption and entertaining environments. But the existential objective of man should not be food but feeding the spirit and cultivating the relationship with the Creator and Giver of the world, discovering its spiritual meanings and reasons. To stay alive at the spiritual level, we need food corresponding to its spiritual dimension. Spiritual “meals” nourish and strengthen our soul powers so that, renouncing the matter of the world and its things by assuming a eucharistic ascetic vision and experience, we can free ourselves from the consuming and despotic regime of temporality and the physiological level. It is worth remembering that the old Adam tasted death when he tasted the fruit from the forbidden tree, which became a fruit of corruption, of death, because through this behavior man individualized himself, separated himself from the Source of Life, from his Creator. The objective of deification has been replaced by the self-willed perspective of “having”, “possessing”, by contaminating human perception and by manifesting the condescending and passionate attitude towards the “act of feeding”. Thus, the Fall is closely related to both pride and gluttony, which includes man’s oral cavity, so that death entered his nature through consumption, seeking pleasure outside of God. Fallen man became obsessed with consumption and lustful in relation to material things, fitting perfectly into a hedonistic society based on overconsumption of any kind. God created the world and offered it to man as food, but the world was not to be consumed by an abusive and perverted use, nor in a passionate way, but with a Eucharistic and contemplative attitude. When he rediscovers his vocation as a being seeking deification, his hunger culminates in a hunger for beauty, kindness and love – the hunger for God. Out of this one can see that man can be nourished by the subtle and spiritual forms of the world, by prayer, by the reasons of things, and most especially by the very Source of eternal life. The scriptural text: “man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4) denotes a neurophysiologically attested reality, as the word / information has, at the level of the brain, the same nourishing effect as food. “The bread of being” is presented in both a physical and a spiritual form, according to the psycho-physical constitution of the human being. Spiritual food has priority over material food, and the soul has priority over the body. The soul does not annul, does not destroy, but only precedes the body, giving it the privilege of becoming its means of revelation. In relation to God, food and matter are restored and perfected as ways of communion with Him. Therefore, the restoration of the human senses and mind requires an ascetic effort and the anchoring of the human being in Christ, who feeds the human person with the Bread of eternal life. Periods of fasting and individual asceticism achieve this desired goal of suspending for a time physiological needs, in order to voluntarily release from the compelling imperative of biological nature and instinctual impulses, and also to accumulate experience on a spiritual plane, by elevating the mind to God and by the sublimation of self-centered, self-sufficient tendencies, thanks to the exercise of self-restraint. God feeds the human person “with Himself” at the level of all senses, as it can be received and assimilated in the Gospel, in the icon, in the Holy Eucharist, etc. Through the Holy Eucharist, which involves the sense of tasting and, therefore, the oral cavity, God reveals himself to us with all His divine gifts, quenching our hunger and thirst for the Infinite with Himself, who is the Infinite, the Meaning, the Life and the Existence per Se.

Pr. drd. Alexandru PALCĂU – Teologia euharistică a lui Karl Barth

Summary: Karl Barth’s Eucharistic Theology

Karl Barth was a Swiss Reformed theologian who lived between 1886 and 1968. He is considered by many to be one of the most important Christian theologians of the 20th century. Barth studied theology at the University of Bern and went on to study at the University of Berlin under Adolf von Harnack. While studying in Berlin, Barth began to question the liberal theology in which he had grown up and developed a theology that focused more on God’s revelation and less on human ideas. The most important work of his life is Kirchliche Dogmatik (Church Dogma­tics), a 13-volume work considered the most extensive work of systematic theology ever written, on which he worked from 1932 to 1968. This work remained unfi­nished until the end of his life. His works include Römerbrief (Epistle to the Romans), Einführung in die evangelische Theologie (Introduction to Evangelical Theology), Die christliche Dogmatik im Entwurf (Christian Dogmatics in Outline), Dogmatik im Grundriss (Dogmatics in General), Die protestantische Theologie im 19. Jahrhundert. Ihre Vorgeschichte und ihre Geschichte (Protestant Theology in the 19th Century, Its History before and in the Present) etc. When referring to Karl Barth’s Eucharistic theology, two aspects must be taken into account: the many changes that occurred in his thought during his lifetime and the fact that the Church Dogmatics was unfinished at his death, which is particularly significant because Barth intended to conclude his massive dogmatic theology with a treatment of the “Lord’s Supper” as the conclusion and crowning of the Christian life. For Barth, the Eucharist is not the place where man encounters God but simply serves as a witness to the Word by pointing to and confirming the reconciliation that Jesus brought to the elect. So, when the elects practice the Eucharist, they bear witness to the Word and confirm to themselves and each other what Jesus has done and is doing for them, reconciled them to himself and sanctified them. In his understanding, the Eucharist is not just a symbolic remembrance of the supper before the sacrifice on the Cross but is an actual event in which Christ is truly present in the midst of the community of believers. Despite the fact that his Eucharistic approach contains nuances in relation to Protestant Eucharistic theology, especially due to the emphasis on the ideas of the personal and dialogical encounter of the Christian with God through the Eucharist and the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist, the Swiss theologian’s Eucharistic theology suffers from certain shortcomings from a Christian Orthodox perspective. For him, Jesus Christ is just as present in the Eucharistic Mystery as He is present in the Mystery of Baptism but also in the Church in general, so in no way within or because of the Eucharistic elements of bread and wine. Although one can appreciate his contribution to the argument for the grace ministry and a certain Christic presence in the Eucharist, for Karl Barth the Lord’s Supper is in no way above any other form of Christian prayer and the importance given to it can only be understood in the context of the witness of the one sacrifice of Christ on the Cross in the Eucharistic gatherings. Moreover, Karl Barth’s Eucharistic theology is influenced by his ecclesiological thinking, from which it follows that the Church is neither an ontological nor a sacramental reality but is defined solely by the presence of Christians and their confession of faith within the Eucharistic framework, as an evidence of the bond and union both between members and God and between themselves. Thus, for him, there are no Eucharistic elements which by their nature are transformed into the Body and Blood of the Lord, there is no need for the priesthood to invoke the Holy Spirit in order to do the graceful work, but all this takes place automatically according to the faith of the participants. It can therefore be seen that Karl Barth’s Eucharistic theology is shaped around the importance of the Eucharist in the life of Christians and the idea that the Lord’s Supper is a sacred event not by its nature but by the occasion of confession of faith that takes place within it and which provides grace, unity, eschatological preparation and missionary motivation for Christians.

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