Life Together: Confession & Communion

This is the fifth & final post in a series, taking an in-depth look at Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s classic, Life Together (Community, The day with others, The Day Alone, Minstry). As Bonhoeffer draws this work to a conclusion he refocuses his sight on the gospel and that a gospel community is made of sinners who have confessed their sin and found their salvation, thus the importance of both confession and communion. He opens the chapter with a wonderful statement of God’s grace: “It is the grace of the Gospel…that it confronts us with the truth and…

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Life Together: Ministry

This is the fourth in a series, taking an in-depth look at Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s classic, Life Together (Community, The day with others, The Day Alone, Confession & Communion). Bonhoeffer opens this chapter with a stark warning; we can destroy Christian community. One of the ways true Christian fellowship can be broken is through self-justification which Bonhoeffer links back to the disciples arguing over who was the greatest in Luke 9:46. Whenever we compare, contrast and set ourselves up over someone else, Christian fellowship comes under attack. Bonhoeffer, rightly, sees that much of the damage…

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Life Together: The day alone

This is the third in a series, taking an in-depth look at Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s classic, Life Together (Community, The day with others, Ministry, Confession & Communion). After having looked at a day in community, Bonhoeffer turns to the individual and highlights two truths of the Christian faith: 1) “Let him who cannot be alone beware of community” 2) “Let him who is not in community beware of being alone.” The first statement recognises that God calls us as individuals, and it us alone who must respond to the call of Jesus and it us…

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Life Together – The day with others

This is the second in a series, taking an in-depth review of Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s classic, Life Together (Community, The Day Alone, Ministry, Confession & Communion). After having considered the nature and purpose of the Christian community and the foundation on which it rests, Bonhoeffer begins to establish a rule of life. A pattern to be adopted by believers in community or simply by a family. Bonhoeffer sees hope and victory in dawn, a sign that the night has been defeated, darkness gives way to light. He issues a passionate call to begin each…

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God hates visionary dreaming

God hates visionary dreaming; it makes the dreamer proud and pretentious. The man who fashions a visionary ideal of community demands that it be realized by God, by others, and by himself. He enters the community of Christians with his demands, sets up his own law, and judges the brethren and God himself accordingly. He stands adamant, a living reproach to all others in the circle of brethren. He acts as if he is the creator of the Christian community, as if his dream binds men together. When things do…

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Life Together: Community

This is the first in a series, taking an in-depth review of Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s classic, Life Together (The Day with Others, The Day Alone, Ministry, Confession & Communion). What is the church and what kind of corporate life should it have? These are important questions, especially in an age where style leads substance and effectiveness leads conviction. Into this, voices from the past remain important for us to listen to, to help us consider our theology and way of being the church in the present time. Dietrich Bonhoeffer remains an important voice for a…

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