The electronic version of my article “The Heresy of Relevance: Bonhoeffer’s Warning to Preachers” has just been published on the Sage Journals website. It will be appearing in print in the February 2022 edition of Pro Eccleisa: A Journal of Catholic and Evangelical Theology. If you have personal or library access to Sage articles, you can read it here.
Here is the abstract:
Amid a crisis in biblical interpretation brought to a head by the Church Struggle in Germany, Dietrich Bonhoeffer delivered an address in August 1935 to a group of Confessing Church pastors entitled “Contemporizing New Testament Texts.” Bonhoeffer sounded a clarion call for the retrieval of a thoroughly theological hermeneutic that would liberate preachers for the bold proclamation of the Gospel within a culturally compromised church. This paper will present a reading of Bonhoeffer’s daring address that seeks to both situate it within its unique historical context and attend to the ways that it calls into question many of the cherished hermeneutical and homiletical assumptions that dominate contemporary preaching for the sake of a more faithful proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.