Vollkommenheit und Vollendung Theologiegeschichtliche Anmerkungen zum Verständnis des Christentums als Erlösungsreligion
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It is a specific feature of the doctrine of redemption in Protestant theology to distinguish between the idea of perfection and the idea of completion. This internal differentiation, which was conceptualized by Friedrich Schleiermacher, is the result of a complicated transformation process of the idea of redemption. This process concerned in particular the understanding of eschatology. It was about the question whether the Christian comes to fulfilment during life on earth or only after this life. In contrast to the pre-modern ideal of perfection, the history of Protestant theology shows a trend to locate the Christian perfection within the incomplete world. This paper gives a brief description of this progression, considering the views of Thomas Aquinas, Dante, Luther, Ritschl and Schleiermacher. It aims at a more sophisticated understanding of Christianity as a religion of redemption.