Jon Petter Heesch

Deconstructing die Sichtungszeit- understanding Zinzendorfs Blood and Wounds theology


Nikolaus Ludwig von Zinzendorf (1700-1760): founder of Herrnhut, visionary, ”count without borders”, world wide traveller, missionary and mystic.

Die Sichtungszeit (the Sifting Period has, almost without exception, been interpreted as the period between 1743 and 1750, widely accepted since Hermann Plitts three volume work on the life of Zinzendorf (1871), and to this day.

Why is one scentific interpretation regarded as normative for such a long time?

My thesis is a reading of texts spanning the whole literary production of Zinzendorf.

My aim is to convey that the key features of die Sichtungszeit are present throughout his works, also the ones preceding 1743. Furthermore, I will widen the scope by showing that his theology carries influences from a much wider Christian tradition.

Constructing a certain timeframe has been a nice and tidy approach, but it is flawed.


Professor Tarald Rasmussen, Faculty of Theology.



Published Aug. 3, 2016 10:38 AM - Last modified Aug. 3, 2016 10:38 AM