Scholars characterise the Akan community concept preponderantly as communalistic. Consequently, they discuss Akan maxims that demonstrate their strong emphasis on collectivism. However, some proverbs reveal a tension between communalism and individualism and expose the struggle to incarnate their cultural values. John presents a similar situation where the Bethesda community, for instance, failed to incarnate their cultural values. Thus, this study explored the community concept in John for the proposed remedy and the implications for Akan believers.
This study employed Loba-Mkole’s intercultural reading for the dialogue between the two cultures. Therefore, it applied Ossom-Batsa’s communicative approach (a three-step frame of interpretation) as the theoretical framework. Thus, the study adopted narrative criticism by Daniel Marguerat and Bourquin to examine the community concept in John in Chapters 2 and 3 to discover the call of action (step 1). Further, it analysed Akan maxims as the substratum of the Akan community ideations (step 2). It then engaged both concepts using intercultural reading (step 3).
From the intercultural exegesis, the study establishes that the remedy for sociocultural maladies is a believing community that fulfils its mission of replicating the community of God. It entails abiding in the Vine and bearing fruits: mission as going and living.
The study recommends further research on the Akan culture, focusing on the materialistic elements. It also proposes that Akan Christians consider the concept of the church as a ‘community of God’ in John. Finally, it advocates that love should be the undergirding principle of communalism, not mutual benefits.
Thesis (PhD (New Testament Studies))--University of Pretoria, 2023.