Wednesday, April 09, 2008
Bonhoeffer's Death Marked
Today marks the anniversary of the death of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a Lutheran pastor who participated in the German resistance during WWII. Bonhoeffer was a leader in the Confessing Church movement which sought to combat the anti-Semitism of the Nazis. His ties to some high-ranking military officials who were plotting Hitler’s assassination were discovered and Bonhoeffer was imprisoned in April 1943. He was executed on April 9, 1945, just three weeks before Berlin fell and a month before the Nazis surrendered to the Allies. Among Bonhoeffer’s most famous writings is The Cost of Discipleship, which begins with these words, “Cheap grace is the mortal enemy of our church. Our struggle today is for costly grace.” Bonhoeffer goes on to say, “When Christ calls us to follow Him, He bids us to come and die.” His words and his life’s example remind us that the cost of following Jesus can at times be extremely high—even to the point of martyrdom. In our culture we know little of the suffering and persecution that others experience daily for being a Christ-follower. My prayer is that we would prioritize our walk with Christ far above all other things in this life, no matter what that might cost us.