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“Jesus Wasn’t Killed for Being Nice”

April 13, 2019

Dietrich Bonhoeffer was one of my early heroes of our faith. Two days ago was the 74th anniversary of his hanging death in a Nazi prison. Tomorrow is Palm Sunday. So much to say about Bonhoeffer, but let me simply point you here as we move towards Palm Sunday and into Holy Week —

“When the crowds cheered for Jesus during his entry in Jerusalem the Pharisees begged him to quiet them down. To which Jesus memorably replied, ‘Even if they were silenced, the stones would shout out.'”

“At the heart of Christianity is a willingness to speak, and in particular to speak about Jesus.

“So too, in Bonhoeffer’s life he reminded those who follow Jesus again and again that the preaching of Christ and the celebration of his crucifixion and resurrection makes possible lives that can point out and identify the lies that threaten our lives.

One of the greatest temptations in Christianity today (particularly in America) is the desire to appear nice. We avoid saying anything of real consequence out of fear that too many feathers will be ruffled – such that we are stretching ourselves so thin that we’re no longer know what we stand for.

“So perhaps as we prepare to follow Jesus’ on his way into Jerusalem, it is good for us to be reminded that Jesus wasn’t killed for being nice, and neither was Bonhoeffer.”


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