Date of Award

Spring 1994

Document Type

Dissertation - Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Corey, Patrick W.

Second Advisor

Hinze, Bradford E.

Third Advisor

Kelly, William J.


Mercersburg Theology was a German Reformed systein of thought which flourished in the 1840's and 1850's in south-central Pennsylvania. With links to both German and English thought, Mercersburg was characterized by its high-church, incarnational, historical, and philosophical approach to theology. Dominant characters included philosopher Frederick A. Rauch (1806-1841), philosophical theologian John Williamson Nevin (1803-1886), church historian Philip Schaff (1819-1893), and philosophical theologian Emanuel V. Gerhart (1817-1904). Historians of American religion have always recognized the critical role which philosophy played in the development of Mercersburg theology. Nevertheless, Mercersburg's philosophical center has remained generally elusive owing to its diversity and complexity. This dissertation attempts to resolve this problem by identifying a "new" philosophical model and then demonstrating its relevance to Mercersburg's primary theological beliefs ( e,g., creation, incarnation, church, history, eucharist, and Scripture...



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