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Elert, Werner

(1885–1954). Ger. historical and systematic theol. B. Heldrungen; d. Erlangen. Educ. Breslau, Erlangen, Leipzig, 1906–12; pastor and army chaplain 1912–19; dir. Old Luth. free ch. sem. Breslau 1919–23; prof. Erlangen 1923.

Made Erlangen world-famous center of neo-Lutheranism. Though critical of classical Luth. dogmaticians including P. Melanchthon,* Elert regarded M. Luther,* the Confessions, and classical dogmaticians as being essentially in harmony. His theol. is oriented in the ev. thought of Luther and in the dialectic of Law and Gospel. Though Luth. and confessional (often called Lutheranissimus), he was in constant dialog with his age and emphasized the task of theol. and the ch. in the contemporary world. He based his findings on thorough Biblical and hist. research.

Works include Der Kampf um das Christentu; Der christliche Glaube; Das christliche Ethos (tr. C. J. Schindler, The Christian Ethos); Morphologic des Luthertums, 2 vols. (Vol. I tr. W. A. Hansen, The Structure of Lutheranism); Abendmahl und Kirchengemeinschaft in der alten Kirche, hauptsächlich des Ostens (tr. N. E. Nagel, Eucharist and Church Fellowship in the First Four Centuries); Zwischen Gnade und Ungnade: Abwandhmgen des Themas Gesetz und Evangelium; Der Ausgang der altkirchlichen Christologie, ed. W. Maurer and E. Bergsträsser.

Beiträge zur historischen und systematischen Theologie: Gedenkschrift für D. Werner Elert, ed. F. Hübner, W. Maurer, E. Kinder (Berlin, 1955). EL


Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
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