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date: 17 August 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This article first clarifies the motive behind Kanzo Uchimura' reception of the Bible in a brief historical description of Japan's encounter with Christianity and the emergence of Uchimura's community of Mukyokai. Based upon the identified motivation, it then surveys Uchimura's writings with three applicational foci in mind, which stand out in his reading of the Bible; that is, the authentication of the marginal, reconsideration of patriotism, and redefinition of Christianity. Books, journal articles, and diary entries that he left behind are all contained in the forty-one volumes of Uchimura Kanzo Zenshu (‘The Complete Works of Kanzo Uchimura’ — Uchimura 1980–2001). Among these, particular focus is given to the series of expository essays on Paul's Letter to the Galatians, and other essays regarding major prophets, as Uchimura often compares them with the apostle Paul. Interest in these essays is due to the special affinity that Uchimura held toward the Galatians letter, to which his own life experience of community-building corresponds closely as an analogical narrative.

Keywords: Kanzo Uchimura, Christianity, Mukyokai, Paul, Galatians, Uchimura Kanzo Zenshu

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