Costly Grace Devotional: A Contemporary View of Bonhoeffers the Cost of Discipleship

Costly Grace Devotional: A Contemporary View of Bonhoeffer's the Cost of Discipleship
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Daniel tried filling the emptiness within him with the things of this world - but an encounter with God would change his life. Meridith Foster on October 26, Meridith Foster on October 19, Jon Walker Author Website. Jon Walker Materials. Morning Programs. View Schedules.

Unlocking the Bible Colin Smith. Insight for Living Chuck Swindoll. Turning Point David Jeremiah. Focus on the Family Jim Daly. In fact, such a step might be the precise opposite of obedience to Jesus, for we might then be choosing a way of life for ourselves, some Christian ideal, or some ideal of Franciscan poverty The step into the situation where faith is possible is not an offer which we can make to Jesus, but always his gracious offer to us.

That suffering implies rejection, for Jesus was a despised Messiah and one is a disciple only by sharing in his rejection and cross.

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Cross-bearing begins with severing the ties that bind a person to this world. It is the dying of the old nature. Thus it begins; the cross is not the terrible end to an otherwise god-fearing and happy life, but it meets us at the beginning of our communion with Christ. When Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die. That death can take many forms.

In the case of the first disciples it began by leaving their homes and work in order to follow Jesus; in the case of Luther it began by leaving the safety of the monastery and preaching the gospel in a hostile world. And the dying continues for the Christian. We can, Bonhoeffer writes, refuse to bear it:.

But only to find that we have a still heavier burden to carry — a yoke of our own choosing, the yoke of our self.


But Jesus invites all who travail and are heavy laden to throw off their own yoke and take his yoke upon them — and his yoke is easy, and his burden is light Under his yoke we are certain of his nearness and communion. It is he whom the disciple finds as he lifts up his cross. Such was not the case with the Bonhoeffer of the third period, that of the s. Evangelicals distanced themselves from Bonhoeffer.

Studies have appeared showing the extent to which liberal theologians have misinterpreted and indeed exploited the Bonhoeffer of the later years. They have not, it is true, succeeded in presenting him as a Reformed theologian. The influences of his liberal training are more evident in these final years than they were in the second period. To avoid one-sidedness, it is therefore necessary to speak of the later writings.

I am doing this, however, not only to give a more balanced picture of the man. As I hope to show, even in the controversial writings we find insights of enduring value. This development is connected with his growing interest in the Old Testament. It is not so that in his early writings and teachings he ignored that part of the Bible. Ever since his conversion he had given much attention to the Book of Psalms, which he saw as the book of Christ and the prayer book of the church. At the Finkenwalde seminary his students were taught to pray the psalms, as he did himself in his private devotions.

Nor was his concern only with the psalms; other books of the Old Testament had his attention as well in the earlier years. His interest in the Old Testament increased, however, with time. The attack provided a strong impetus for Bonhoeffer and other theologians, including Karl Barth, to reclaim the Old Testament as book of the Christian church.

In the first place there is his conviction that God is the one God of the entire Bible, of the Old Testament as much as the New. This means that the Old Testament has an authority that is binding on the interpretation of the New, just as the New Testament illumines the message of the Old. His intensive reading of the Old Testament caused him in the second place to stress the importance of the present, earthly, natural life. We live in the present, in what he called the penultimate , namely that which comes before the last things.

From this position we anticipate the ultimate , that is the resurrection of the dead and the world to come. The ultimate claims our final allegiance. But this does not mean that we are to disregard the penultimate. On the contrary; the importance of the earthly life is a biblical given. Bonhoeffer does not want us to spiritualize such teachings.

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Christ prays on the cross for his enemies and teaches us to do the same. Very light wear. This daily devotional is full of insight for women seeking biblical wisdom that can be applied directly to their lives. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. Audiobook Download. Disobedience can fracture our relationship with God in such a way that he will not answer our prayers.

Jesus Himself healed people of bodily infirmities and the Christian hope of resurrection speaks of life on an earth that, although purified and renewed, is nevertheless this present earth. The Christian hope of the resurrection does not allow for a renunciation of a world that God created and declared to be very good. The gospel is not just about the salvation of man; the universe itself will be redeemed.

Biblical this-worldliness must therefore be seen, Bonhoeffer believes, as a condition of the Christian faith.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer – The cost of discipleship | Christian Library

To clarify his idea of the relationship between the present world and the world to come, between penultimate and ultimate, Bonhoeffer liked to use the metaphor of polyphony in music. He writes on May 20, God requires that we should love him eternally with our whole hearts, yet not so as to compromise or diminish our earthly affections, but as a kind of cantus firmus to which the other melodies of life provide the counterpoint. Earthly affection is one of these contrapuntal themes Where the ground bass is firm and clear, there is nothing to stop the counterpoint from being developed to the utmost of its limits 99f.

They could do so, however, only by ignoring much of the rest of his writings. For him the word refers in the first place to an overriding concern with the salvation of the individual soul. Righteousness and the Kingdom of God on this earth are central there.

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They are still central today. Moreover, as already mentioned, the gospel speaks of the redemption of not only the believer, but of all creation. In stating that God is not to be sought as a crutch in times of suffering, Bonhoeffer did not imply a disparagement of Christian prayer, nor did he deny that God is a present help in times of need. His entire life makes such a negative interpretation impossible.

He himself prayed constantly and he thanked others for their intercessory prayer. God does not give us everything we want, but he does fulfil all his promises, i. In this way, God creates in us praise for himself. Yet a third negative connotation that the word religion has for Bonhoeffer is the nurturing of a Christian fortress mentality, a tendency to build walls around the church in an effort to protect it against a hostile world.

Instead of opposing the anti-Christians policies of the Hitler regime and defending the oppressed, the church spoke up only when its own status and safety were at stake. In this connection he issued a criticism of his book The Cost of Discipleship. Religionless Christianity, then, is for Bonhoeffer a Christianity wherein the believer lives out his faith in the midst of the world. It therefore implies a complete conversion — a dying of the old nature and a coming to life of the new.

He speaks like this, for example, in his prison letter of July 16, , where he writes:. The Bible however directs him to the powerlessness and suffering of God; only a suffering God can help The God of the Bible As Reformed theologian B. It also served to express his thoughts about the mysteries of divine providence.

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Costly Grace Devotional: A Contemporary View of Bonhoeffer's the Cost of Discipleship [Jon Walker] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Editorial Reviews. From the Inside Flap. Millions of copies of Dietrich Bonhoeffer's Cost of Costly Grace Devotional: A Contemporary View of Bonhoeffer's the Cost of Discipleship - Kindle edition by Jon Walker. Download it once and read it.

His situation was similar to that of Old Testament believers who experienced times when evil flourished and the righteous were oppressed; when it seemed that God indeed allowed Himself to be pushed to the sidelines. And it was not only the psalmists who pondered this mystery. Old Testament prophets also spoke of a God who concealed his omnipotence in apparent powerlessness. It is, instead, a life of following Christ the crucified and therefore of cross-bearing.

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Christ has indeed been given all power in heaven and on earth, but in our present world that power is still hidden. Kamphuis to turn to him once more has related it to current discussions among Reformed and evangelical Christians about the gifts of the Spirit, power ministry, faith healing, and so on. He writes:.

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Of course, there are all sorts of other topics of interest in the discussions: the question whether we may still expect special spiritual gifts But I do not think that these constitute the real problems and give rise to the deepest disagreements. What I fear especially is a theology of glory, one which now already possesses and is able to demonstrate the victory of Christ. The crucified one is the resurrected and present, living Lord.

But he is present among us only as the crucified.