Tag Archives: Bonhoeffer

Bonhoeffer and the Canadian “Values Test”

A few weeks ago, I was interviewed by Olivia Lavallee, a student at the University of Victoria in British Columbia, about Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s views on church and state for an article she was writing about the controversial “Attestation” required by the Canadian federal government on summer grant applications.  You can read the full article here.

“Livin’ on a Prayer”: A Prescription for Pastoral Ministry

This past Sunday (June 10, 2018) I had the great privilege of preaching at the ordination of my friend and former student Robyn Elliott at Yorkminster Park Baptist Church in Toronto.  The following is the text of my sermon.  The Scripture readings were Isaiah 50:4-9 and 2 Timothy 1:3-14. Continue reading “Livin’ on a Prayer”: A Prescription for Pastoral Ministry

Salvation by Allegiance Alone – Chapter 3

This is the fourth in a series of posts engaging with Matthew Bates’s Salvation by Allegiance Alone.  The earlier posts can be read here:  first, second, third.

In chapter 3, “Jesus Proclaims the Gospel,” Bates turns to confronting a longstanding problem in modern Protestant Christianity:  the reconciliation of the Letters of Paul with the Gospels.1  The writings of Paul have long been a haven for certain forms of Lutheranism and conservative evangelicalism espousing the centrality of a particular understanding of justification by faith.  While the Gospels have often been the playground of some liberal forms of Christianity attempting to advance a social agenda based upon ethical principles.  The irony is that in their readings of their respective canons-within-a-canon both groups have lost sight of the animating center of the canon as a whole, as well as Paul’s Letters and the Gospels in particular, namely the crucified and living Lord Jesus Christ. Continue reading Salvation by Allegiance Alone – Chapter 3

  1. Interestingly, Bonhoeffer felt the need to make a similar move in his famous treatise Discipleship.  Although, Bonhoeffer began with the Synoptic Gospels before turning his attention to Paul.

Forthcoming Issue of Didaskalia

The forthcoming issue of the Canadian theological journal Didaskalia, published by Providence Theological Seminary, includes both a gracious review of my book For the Life of the World: Jesus Christ and the Church in the Theologies of Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Stanley Hauerwas by Christopher Holmes and an essay of my own entitled, “A Matter of MIssion: Bonhoeffer, the Bible, and Ecclesial Formation.” Continue reading Forthcoming Issue of Didaskalia

Bonhoeffer on Human Freedom and the Image of God

Tonight is the final night of the four week teaching series, “Bonhoeffer: Following Jesus in a Fragmented World,” that I’ve been leading at Whitby Christian Assembly.  That 200 people would come out on Wednesday evenings in January to hear about a dead German theologian is testimony to the commitment and passion of this extraordinary congregation.  Of course, it doesn’t hurt that Dietrich Bonhoeffer is no ordinary dead German theologian! Continue reading Bonhoeffer on Human Freedom and the Image of God

Bonhoeffer on What it Means “To Believe in the Church”

I taught an intensive intercession course on the “Life and Thought of Dietrich Bonhoeffer” during the first week of January this year.  While the students were responsible for completing some reading prior to our week together in class—including Christianne Tietz’s excellent, new short biography, Theologian of Resistance: The Life and Thought of Dietrich Bonhoeffer—most of the major engagement with the primary sources in the Bonhoeffer corpus has been taking place over the past few weeks following the conclusion of our time together in class.  In recent days, the students would have encountered this remarkable passage from Bonhoeffer’s doctoral dissertation in which he addresses the question of what is means “to believe in the church.”  The passage is noteworthy not only because it was penned by a theology student who was a mere twenty-one years old at the time, but also because it anticipates in many ways the central themes of Bonhoeffer’s ecclesiology that will come to the fore throughout his life. Continue reading Bonhoeffer on What it Means “To Believe in the Church”