Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Christmas in a diseased Christianity

One best becomes a Christian -- without "Christianity."

When Christianity entered the world, people were not Christians, and the difficulty was to become a Christian. Nowadays the difficulty in becoming a Christian is that one must cease to become a "Christian."

Only a person of will can become a Christian; for only a person of will has a will that can be broken. But a person of will whose will is broken is a Christian. The stronger the natural will, the deeper the break can be and the better the Christian. This is what has been described by the expressive phrase: the new obedience. A Christian is a person of will who no longer wills her own will but with the passion of her crushed will -- radically changed -- wills another's will.

Relationship to Christ is the decisive thing. You may be thoroughly informed about Christianity as a whole, you may know how to explain it, present it and expound it -- but if with all this...your relationship with Christ is indifferent, you are a pagan.

In so called Christianity, we have made Christmas into a great festival. This is quiet false, and it was not at all so in the early Church. We mistake childishness for Christianity -- what with our sickly sentimentality, our candy canes, and our manger scenes. Instead of remaining conscious of being in conflict that marks a life of true faith, we Christians have made ourselves a home and settled down in a comfortable and cozy existence. No wonder Christmas has become little more than a beautiful holiday.

Christianity has been made so much into a consolation that people have completely forgotten it is first and foremost a demand.

Soren Kierkegaard

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