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Only the obedient believe. If we are to believe, we must obey a concrete command. Without this preliminary step of obedience, our faith will only be pious humbug, and lead us to the grace which is not costly. Everything depends on the first step. It has a unique quality of its own. The first step of obedience makes Peter leave his nets, and later gets out of the ship; it calls upon the young man to leave his riches. Only this new existence, created through obedience, can make possible faith possible. 

Dietrich BonhoefferThe Cost of Discipleship1961 edition, 70.

As is the master, so shall the disciple be, and as the Lord, so the servant. If they called Jesus a devil, how much more shall they call the servants of his household devils. Thus Jesus will be with them, and they will be in all things like unto him.

Dietrich BonhoefferThe Cost of Discipleship1961 edition, 239-240.

But the heart is dark when it clings to earthly goods, for then, however urgently Jesus may call us, his call fails to find access to our hearts. Our hearts are closed, for they have already been given to another. As light cannot penetrate the body when the eye is evil, so the word of Jesus cannot penetrate the disciple’s heart so long as it is closed against it. 

Dietrich BonhoefferThe Cost of Discipleship1961 edition, 193.

February 2020
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