Author Topic: Accurate interpretation of Bonhoeffer?  (Read 681 times)

Matt Hummel

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Accurate interpretation of Bonhoeffer?
« on: November 25, 2021, 09:57:50 AM »
I came across this video in my YouTube feed: https://youtu.be/ww47bR86wSc

It is on Bonhoeffer’s theory of stupidity, as found in Letters and Papers From Prison. I am operating under the assumption that a number of you are more well versed than am I in his work and thought. Is this an accurate interpretation?
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pearson

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Re: Accurate interpretation of Bonhoeffer?
« Reply #1 on: November 25, 2021, 10:57:07 AM »

I came across this video in my YouTube feed: https://youtu.be/ww47bR86wSc

It is on Bonhoeffer’s theory of stupidity, as found in Letters and Papers From Prison. I am operating under the assumption that a number of you are more well versed than am I in his work and thought. Is this an accurate interpretation?


Yes, I think so.  At least, it is an interpretation that falls within the range of plausible interpretations of Bonhoeffer.  Bonhoeffer reflects  occasionally in Letters and Papers from Prison on the corrupting effect of power and public stupidity (Dummheit or Blödheit in German).  And throughout his pastoral and academic career, he famously wrote on religion-less Christianity, ethics-less Christianity, and power-less Christianity.  So it seems to fit.

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Dave Likeness

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Re: Accurate interpretation of Bonhoeffer?
« Reply #2 on: November 25, 2021, 11:05:02 AM »
To really understand Dietrich Bonhoeffer I would recommend 3 books:

The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer (unabridged edition, Macmillan)

Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy by Eric Metaxas (2010 Thomas Nelson)

The Collected Sermons of Dietrich Bonhoeffer (2012 Fortress Press)


Norman Teigen

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Re: Accurate interpretation of Bonhoeffer?
« Reply #3 on: November 26, 2021, 05:03:53 AM »
Some have found Metaxas  to be a. questionable source.    Be careful.

https://religionandpolitics.org/2016/10/18/eric-metaxas-bonhoeffer-delusions/

"Likening the Third Reich to a Democratic administration would not be surprising from the obstreperous right-wing crusader Ann Coulter, who appears regularly on “The Eric Metaxas Show.” But Metaxas, who purports to be a winsome, irenic apologist for the Christian faith, in the fashion of his friends Tim Keller and Os Guinness, blindsided some evangelicals in proclaiming that a Hillary Clinton victory in November portends the vanquishing of the Republic—and that taking Bonhoeffer seriously in our time means voting for Donald Trump.

"At the same time, Metaxas emboldened and excited many other evangelicals with his supreme confidence that the 2016 presidential election confronts America with a world historical decision: salvation by Trump, or damnation through “Hitlerly,” as Metaxas has called Hillary Clinton, the Democratic presidential candidate and lifelong Methodist, on social media. With Hillary, America will not get a second chance. A certain sector of white American evangelicals labors beneath the unrelenting anxiety that the Democratic Party and its leaders actively seek to destroy the Christian way of life."

« Last Edit: November 26, 2021, 05:05:53 AM by Norman Teigen »
Norman Teigen

Mike in Pennsylvania

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Re: Accurate interpretation of Bonhoeffer?
« Reply #4 on: November 26, 2021, 09:43:47 AM »
To really understand Dietrich Bonhoeffer I would recommend 3 books:

The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer (unabridged edition, Macmillan)

Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy by Eric Metaxas (2010 Thomas Nelson)

The Collected Sermons of Dietrich Bonhoeffer (2012 Fortress Press)



Metaxas is a good popular biography of Bonhoeffer, but I think he tries to hard to make Bonhoeffer an American evangelical.  Bonhoeffer is a creature of his place and time -- an upper class German in a state church, and that colors his thinking. 
OTOH, I personally have benefited more from Bonhoeffer than I think any other indivudal theologian.
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Dave Likeness

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Re: Accurate interpretation of Bonhoeffer?
« Reply #5 on: November 26, 2021, 10:19:34 AM »
His "The Cost of Discipleship"  is a reminder to the church that every generation
must fight against cheap Grace.  It happens when there is forgiveness without
repentance, Baptism without church discipline, Holy Communion without confession,
Grace without the cross of Christ.

Bonhoeffer was a theologian who did not live in an ivory tower.  Instead, he was able
to communicate the truth of Holy Scripture in a way that impacted the lives of those
who followed Christ.   

jtpless

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Re: Accurate interpretation of Bonhoeffer?
« Reply #6 on: November 27, 2021, 12:17:35 PM »
You might look at Gregory Schulz's chapter on Bonhoeffer in ONE LORD, TWO HANDS: ttps://www.amazon.com/One-Lord-Two-Hands-Theology-ebook/dp/B09DL986VK/ref=sr_1_1?crid=3VOXB76O17Y4Y&keywords=one+lord+two+hands+matthew+harrison&qid=1638033058&qsid=144-9385851-9074521&s=books&sprefix=One+Lord%2Caps%2C217&sr=1-1&sres=B09DL986VK%2C0758671067

I would also recommend Michael DeJonge's BONHOEFFER'S RECEPTION OF LUTHER and Bradley Pribbenow's book on Bonhoeffer's interpretation of the Psalms.


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Rev. Edward Engelbrecht

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Re: Accurate interpretation of Bonhoeffer?
« Reply #7 on: November 28, 2021, 06:23:18 AM »
I have to say, I found the video difficult to understand, perhaps because I've not read a lot of Bonhoeffer.
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