Belief vs Obedience


Fellow servants,

I’m re-reading “Bonhoeffer” by Eric Metaxas…wow, one tremendous book. Boy, did Bonhoeffer ever write some good stuff, “Cost of Discipleship”, “Ethics”, etc.  He. Was a Lutheran pastor, theologian, anti-Nazi is dissident and key founding meme bear of the Confessing Church.  Plus a martyr for Jesus Christ.  Here’s a little sample from the 2011, book of the year, “Bonhoeffer”.

“the great masquerade of evil has played havoc with our ethical concepts. For evil to appear disguised as light, charity, historical necessity, or social justice is quite bewildering to anyone brought up on our traditional ethical concepts, while for the Christian who bases his life on the Bible it merely confirms the fundamental wickedness of evil. Who will stand fast? Only the man whose final standard is not his reason, his principles, his conscience, his freedom or his virtue, but who is ready to sacrifice all this when he is called to be obedient and responsible action in faith and in exclusive allegiance to God; the responsible man, who tries to make his whole life an answer to the question and call of God.” – Dietrich Bonhoeffer“This is how Bonhoeffer saw what he was doing. He had theologically redefined the Christian life as something active, not reactive. It had nothing to do with avoiding sin or with merely talking or teaching or believing theological notions or principles or tenets or rules. It had everything to do with living one’s life in obedience to God’s call through action. It did not merely require a mind, but a body too.” – Eric Metaxas

Or I’ll put forth the question: were those of Bonhoeffer’s era guilty of Biblical academia verses Biblical obedience. Did they know what the Bible said but were too immersed in their traditions and “church dogma” on Sunday and thus fail to manifest the truth through their lives the rest of the week?

So, here’s the question for us TODAY. Are we so immersed in knowing what the Bible says through devotions, meditations, study, sermons and seminars yet LACK obedience to the very Word of God we have studied? Can the world really tell the difference between our behavior and theirs?
For Germany it wrought the heinous evil monster named Hitler. What will such neglect of Biblical obedience reap for each of us? I fear we have been duped into believing that belief is enough and thus the end result is apathy to our living out our lifestyles and behaving as Jesus Christ to the world. For many studies have shown that Christians behave no differently than the secular world.  Even the devil believes.  The difference is in OBEDIENCE!

But prove yourselves doers of the word and not merely hearers who delude themselves.” James 1:22 “for faith without works is dead” James 2:17 I am praying for you and your families.

Leonard Navarre
Lubbock, Texas

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