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The Truth Will Set You Free

November 23, 2008

As I was reading a book of Dietrich Bonhoeffer‘s sermons tonight, one of them pretty much slapped me across the face. It’s comfortable and lovely to think of God in the crucified Christ as being soft and cuddly, inclusive to all and not wanting to hurt anyone’s feelings. But bless him, Brother Bonhoeffer reminded me that it is not so.

While God is love, He is also Truth. And this truth is unmovable, eternal and just. We crucified this truth on the cross, we killed it and we did it in defense of self, so we might continue to build our silent temples to ourselves, within ourselves, worshipping at this idol of our own falsehood. We bind ourselves up in our own lies so tightly sometimes that we don’t even see that they are lies anymore. We create our own truth and then grow to hate others when they don’t see our truth.


“You are living as though you were alone in the world. You have thought to find within yourself the source of truth, which can only be found in God. For that reason you hate the other person who does the same. You found in yourself the center of the world and this is the source of the lie.

You saw your brothers as part of your personal kingdom, lording it over them and not seeing that you and they live by the truth of God. You hate God and your brothers because they deny your truth…Our lies hate the love of God because they imagine they have no need of it.

…Only God’s truth can enable me to see the other as he really is. It tears out the twisted image that I have of the other in me and shows him to me in a different light.

…The man who loves because he has been made free by God is the most revolutionary man on earth.”

Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Berlin, Germany
July 24, 1932 (six months before the election of Adolf Hilter as Chancellor of Germany)



(That we might dare to live outside the worship of self and enter into the worship of God, of Love, of Truth.)

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Glo permalink
    November 24, 2008 3:28 am

    “You have thought to find within yourself the source of truth, which can only be found in God.”

    This reminds me a lot of Buddhism, which I am seeing more and more as a crumbling ideology.

  2. Caroline permalink*
    November 24, 2008 1:56 pm

    I see this so much everywhere, and much of the time, in myself. It’s a tough pill to swallow — it hurts like hell, but it’s necessary to realize that our idols to ourselves are useless.

    I appreciate your mind and can’t wait till you are here again and we can have UCup church and talk talk talk.

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