Integrity and Integration in Ecclesiastical Historiography: The Perspective of Mosheim and Neander
Date of Award
Doctor of Theology (ThD)
Scripture References in this Resource (separated by semi-colons)
John 17:11-16; Romans, 12:2; 1 Corinthians 9:19-23; 1 Corinthians 10:32-33;
This investigation attempts to apply the motif of integrity and integration in an examination of Lutheran ecclesiastical historiography. This is not a comprehensive survey involving all the significant Lutheran historians of the past but rather focuses on selected Lutheran historians of different centuries to determine possible tendencies in their views of integrity and integration. Although these terms themselves are not employed as such by the theologians/historians analyzed here, this study starts with the hypothesis that the concepts expressed by these terms are not unfamiliar to them.
In a study of Lutheran historiography the question about Luther's view of history deserves to be raised. This is done in the first chapter where Luther's position regarding the integrity and integration of the church also receives attention. Luther himself was no historian, therefore the views of two expression to his view of history are briefly examined in the same chapter. The two are Matthias Facies and Veit Ludwig von Seckendorf. These Lutherans still felt a natural tie tithe Reformation, although Seckendorf was already a transition figure. Seckendorf, who won recognition for his comprehensive history of Lutheranism, did not, however, write general history of the church and therefore is only briefly considered here.
The main focus of this study falls upon two epoch-making Lutheran ecclesiastical historians, Johann Lorenz Mosheim and Johann August Wilhelm Neander. The historical production of Mosheim belongs to the eighteenth century and that of Neander to the nineteenth. Being more distant from the Reformation, these historians have to deal with the Reformation more as their genealogy than as their own youth. Mosheim seems not to have sensed very clearly that growing distance, but there is witness to the gap. Neander realizes how far he has come.
Although these historians have been studied before, they have never been analyzed according to the scheme of integrity and integration. Both scholars wrote several more or less comprehensive historical works, however, it seemed best to restrict the analysis teach author's major work, namely, each one's general history of the church. The main reason for this decision is that it allows a comparison of the views that the authors expressed on the same subject matter, a comparison that would not be possible with other wider-ranging writings where each deals with different topics." In addition to analyzing their views of integrity and integration, and to better contextualize these views, attention will be given to their view of history, to their historical method, to their contributions to the church’s historiography, and to emphases in their theological outlooks, especially as these relate to the larger theological context of their times.
Buss, Paulo, "Integrity and Integration in Ecclesiastical Historiography: The Perspective of Mosheim and Neander" (1994). Doctor of Theology Dissertation. 9.
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