Volume 73, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 2542-6583
  • E-ISSN: 2590-3268



The ‘contemplative turn’ in today’s theology had already a predecessor in the theology of O. Noordmans. That theology, developed in the first half of the 20th century, was (as Noordmans himself put it) ‘embedded’ in ‘the church as mother church’, as a ‘womb of piety’. This article describes how that can be seen in Noordmans’s appreciation of the pastoral character of Reformed dogmatics and in his sharp distinction between ‘church’ and ‘school’. The church, according to him, is not a place for doing philosophy, rather for proclaiming the Gospel, and the dogma serves only to keep the preacher on the right path. In this context, special attention is paid to Noordmans’s doctrine of creation, as summarized in his statement: ‘Creating is not forming, but dividing’. In other words: creation cannot be a (philopsophical) theme in itself; rather it is the beginning of a story: the story of the procession towards the cross.


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