Archive for January 18th, 2012

January 18th, 2012

Word of the Week Wednesday: Heilsgeschichte

by Max Andrews

The Word of the Week is: Heilsgeschichte (hiyels-ge-sheek-te)

Definition: When translated from German it literally means “salvation history.”

More about the term: Heilsgeschichte is an organizing principle developed by Oscar Cullman for the various New Testament titles for Jesus. Cullman’s Christology is centered on what Jesus has done in history.

It is a characteristic of New Testament Christology that Christ is connected with the total history of revelation and salvation, beginning with creation. There can be no Heilsgeschichte without Christology; no Christology without a Heilsgeschichte which unfolds in time. Christology is the doctrine of an event, not the doctrine of natures. (Oscar Cullman, The Christology of the New Testament, rev. ed. [Philadelphia: Westminster, 1963], 9).