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Uchimura Kanzo on Justification by Faith in His A Study of Romans: A prospect of Semantic Analysis of Romans

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Title: Uchimura Kanzo on Justification by Faith in His A Study of Romans: A prospect of Semantic Analysis of Romans
Authors: Chiba, Kei Browse this author →KAKEN DB
Issue Date: Mar-2012
Publisher: Graduate School of Letters, Hokkaido University
Journal Title: Journal of the Graduate School of Letters
Volume: 7
Start Page: 1
End Page: 20
Abstract: In this introductory paper on Uchimura Kanzo’s A Study of Romans, I focus on Uchimura’s understanding of faith and justification by faith, within the context of a general application of his methods and doctrines. I also point out a germ of the Second-Reformation in his interpretation of faith,which he was keen to develop throughout his life. Since Paul himself, as I understand him,reached out a hand of reconciliation to Catholicism and Protestantism well before the Reformation in sixteenth century, I demonstrate that Uchimura was compelled by the text itself to this kind of encompassing interpretation. In parallel with introducing Uchimura’s thoughts, I carry out a semantic analysis of the text of Romans at a more basic level than his theological interpretations so that Uchimura’s thought can be made more clear being accompained by some constraints at the linguistic level. I claim through a semantic analysis that there are two senses of‘pistis (faith (fullness))’in Romans. Romans 3.21-26 is in the language of“before God”, through which God’s understanding, judgment, and action concerning human beings are all reported. In other words,God is the agent of this paragraph and the grammar in this dimension is not same as in the dimension which Paul used in his understanding of man as an agent because of the weakness of his flesh (6.19). Paul distinguished the(f1)“faith (fullness) of Jesus Christ (3.21),”which I will term (f1), from “faith”(f2),which is the mental disposition or state of all human beings,with exception of Jesus of Nazareth. When Paul gazed at our flesh and uttered ‘faith’according to “the manner of man”by conceeding to “the weakness of flesh”(6. 19) it refers to a mental state emerged in our soul. This (f2)-type of our own flesh varies from person to person,and it also varies from time to time within one person. On this human centric basis,Aristotelian Catholic doctrines are developed by taking “faith”as (f2) alone i.e. a mental state of free and responsible man. When Paul observed the different states of human beings,and addressed the people of Rome in the imperative mood, this dimension of his language is different from the language of the revelation “before God”. For if Paul did not presuppose the possible disobedience of the Romans,he would not have delivered his statement in the imperative mood. The persons whom Paul addressed in the imperative mood were capable of being of either righteous or sinful (6.11). The possibility is that the resulting being is one who lives, not in front of God, but in front of man. It is not clearly revealed to each person, who is righteous and who is not. That is why having faith on one’s part is always essential for every man. Thus,Paul orders to the people of Romans,“The faith which you have according to yourself(kata seauton), have you before God (14.22).” This order is addressed to the person in group “before Man”so as not to sever(f2)his faith which is held according to his own free responsibility from (f1) the faith revealed in Jesus Christ as constituting the faith of people in group “before God”. This is the gist of Protestantism.
Type: bulletin (article)
Appears in Collections:Journal of the Graduate School of Letters > Volume 7

Submitter: 千葉 惠

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