Doctrine, Dynamic and Difference: To the Heart of the Lutheran-Roman Catholic Differentiated Consensus on Justification
One of the most divisive issues in Western Christianity since the Reformation is the question of how humans are justified by God. In 1999, after many decades of ecumenical dialogue, Lutherans and Roman Catholics have declared that this issue of ‘justification by faith' is no longer a cause of division between them. One of the fascinating features of this Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification (JDDJ) is that it expresses a ‘differentiated consensus' on justification.
The method of differentiated consensus is generally regarded as an important methodological step forward in the ecumenical dialogue. It has been used and referred to in ecumenical documents published after 1999. But what are its meaning and implications? This study attempts to clarify the method of differentiated consensus by (1) investigating the process of doctrinal rapprochement which led up to the JDDJ, (2) examining the way the consensus takes shape in the document itself, (3) analyzing arguments offered by critics and advocates of the official dialogue and (4) reflecting on the concept of doctrinal difference.
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afﬁrm afﬁrmation ambiguity Balthasar believer believer’s Birmelé Christ Christian concept concerns condemnations created grace decree on justiﬁcation deﬁnition dialogue on justiﬁcation dialogue partner differentiated consensus difﬁcult distinction DNK-LWB doctrine ofjustiﬁcation document ecclesial ecclesiological ecumenical dialogue emphasis existential expressed faith ﬁnal Finnish Luther ﬁrst Flogaus fundamental difference GER-DER German gospel hermeneutical human cooperation human freedom Ibid idea implies issue iustus et peccator jDDj justiﬁcation Karl Rahner law and gospel Leuenberg Leuenberg Agreement Lutheran and Roman Lutheran churches Lutheran paragraph Lutheran World Federation Lutheran-Roman Catholic dialogue Mannermaa Meyer ofﬁcial one’s peccatum perspective Pesch Peura present Protestant question Rahner real presence reality reception Rechtfertigung reﬂections relationship response righteousness role Roman Catholic Church Roman Catholic paragraph Roman Catholic teaching Roman Catholic theology sacramental salvation sapiential theology signiﬁcance simul iustus sinfulness sinner soteriology statement subsection teaching on justiﬁcation thejDDj theologians Theosis tradition Trent Tridentine unity VELKD VELKD/DNK-LWB