What Bonhoeffer Said About Discipleship

I ran across this quote and had to share it. There are a dozen little gems here, so good luck digging!

Jesus Christ must suffer and be rejected. This is the "must" of God's promise in which the Scripture is fulfilled. Jesus was the Christ who could still be celebrated in suffering. That suffering could still be the basis of all the world's pity and wonder. Suffering as something tragic could still carry within it its own value, its own honor and dignity. But Jesus is the Christ who is rejected in suffering. Being rejected takes away from suffering any dignity and honor. Suffering and being rejected are the summary expression for the cross of Jesus. Death on the cross means suffering and dying as one who is rejected and cast out. Jesus must suffer and be rejected by virtue of divine necessity. Any attempt at thwarting the necessary is satanic, even and precisely when it comes out of the circle of the disciples, for it does not want to let Christ be Christ... Thus for Jesus it now becomes necessary to relate the “must” of suffering to his disciples in a clear and unambiguous way. As Christ is Christ only as the suffering and rejected one, so the disciple is a disciple only as one who suffers and is rejected, as one crucified with Jesus. Discipleship understood as being bound to the person of Jesus Christ, places the disciple under the law of Christ, that is, under the cross.
- Dietrich Bonhoeffer

If you enjoyed this reading, try "I Want to Live These Days with You- Dietrich Bonhoeffer."

1 comment:

Ann Baker said...

Don't know about that word "law." Shouldn't it be "response" to the Christ or "unity" with the Christ or freedom of the Christ. Its not that the idea of suffering should be foreign to Christians but its in the context of a desired knowing and unity with the experiences and fellowship of the Christ that sufferings take on new depth of meaning and the ability to bear up under them. Paul said it a little better than Bonhoeffer although I have great respect for the sufferings of both men.