Thursday, September 29, 2011

Eric Mataxas Lecture on Bonhoeffer

This past summer, Eric Mataxas came to Ocean Grove for the new Elwood Stokes Lecture Series. He talked about his biography on Deitrich Bonhoeffer.

Here are my short notes taken on my mobile device.

2011-07-12 Eric Mataxas - OG Tabernacle
First in Elwood Stokes Lecture series

About Eric
Eric wrote part of Lyle Viking for the Vegie Tales videos and also was the narrator for the Esther Vegie Tales video. He attended Yale. His website is There are video interviews there.

Eric read the book "The Cost of Discipleship" by Dietrich Bonhoeffer.
He wrote a book "Everything you Wanted to Know about God, But Were Afraid to Ask" He talked about it on CNN. He also wrote a book on Wilberforce. Someone convinced him to write about Bonhoeffer.

About Bonhoeffer
Bonhoeffer, after obtaining a doctorate in theology from Berlin@ age of 21, then came to USA and attended Union theological seminary. A friend invited him to Harlem Abyssinian Baptist Church and that moved him.

2 days after Hitler made was made chancellor, B. gave famous speech on radio:
Legit leadership is submitted to God and is a servant.

The Nazis didn't advertise neo-paganism, they just said it was the German church.
B. Felt it doesn't pay to run down corridor of train in opposite direction, need to get off the train, so he separated from the German state church.

in 1933: he preached about death, the final station on the way to freedom. If we've glimpsed the kingdom, our lives are forever and totally changed, we are homesick and live to walk in God's way.

Two central beliefs he had:
1. Church is a church for others: we are blessed to be a blessing to others. Who can't stand up for themselves? Those are the ones who we need to stand up for.
2. Religion-less Christianity: Religion to B. was pejorative: not just being moral, but to bless, serve, and help others.
We are to live our whole lives and give them to God. But, he would say we were just religion-less Christians, so the Nazis prevailed. This parallels our church today.

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