Bonhoeffer on gospelling one another

I’m posting a few quotes from Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Life Together purchase from Amazon UK purchase from Amazon US which I recently reviewed (here).

Today a quote on the importance of speaking the truth to one another in community.

Christians are persons who no longer seek their salvation, their deliverance, their justification in themselves, but in Jesus Christ alone. They know that God’s Word in Jesus Christ pronounces them guilty, even when they feel nothing of their own guilt, and that God’s Word in Jesus Christ pronounces them free and righteous, even when they feel nothing of their own righteousness … [So] ‘they watch for this Word wherever they can. Because they daily hunger and thirst for righteousness, they long for the redeeming Word again and again … The Christ in their own hearts is weaker than the Christ in the word of other Christians. Their own hearts are uncertain; those of their brothers and sisters are sure. At the same time, this also clarifies that the goal of all Christian community is to encounter one another as bringers of the message of salvation.’ (32)
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3 thoughts on “Bonhoeffer on gospelling one another

  1. Tim,

    Thanks for this. Recently I have become aware of the desperate need we have to “preach the gospel to ourselves daily.” I think it was Jerry Bridges that coined that term. More than that though I have been so impressed of my need to hear it from others. That passage in Eph. that tells us to “speak the truth to one another in love” is not an invitation to criticism or condemn our brothers and sisters – it’s not even primarily about correction. We need to speak the truth of the gospel to one another. God’s word of grace to me is, as the quote from Bonhoeffer so powerfully puts it, stronger from others in my ears than in my own heart. Powerful.

  2. Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones spoke of preaching to ourselves in Spiritual Depression, his great reflection on Psalm 42. I suspect Lloyd-Jones got the idea, if not the term, from the Puritans, but he was probably the first to use it more recently.

  3. Pingback: Gospelling one another « SOJOURN BIBLE CHURCH

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