The GKSA’s use of Article 30 CO in the era of apartheid

  • Nico Vorster


This article discusses the GKSA’s (Gereformeerde Kerke in Suid-Afrika) use of article 30 CO during the apartheid era. The central theoretical argument is that the GKSA Synods gave a Kuyperian content to the expression ‘ecclesiastical affairs in an ecclesiastical manner’ in article 30 CO, and this enabled them to evade sensitive political issues. The article states that the Kuyperian ecclesiology contains serious deficiencies and proposes that the relevant expression must rather be interpreted from the perspective of God’s kingdom, because the church is a sign and instrument of God’s kingdom on earth that anticipates the kingdom of God. ‘Ecclesiastical affairs’ ought to refer to all religious-ethical, social-ethical and spiritual issues that pertain to the principles of God’s kingdom, while ‘ecclesiastical manner’ ought to depict the church’s unique way of dealing with matters through witness, confession and proclamation.