Bonhoeffer's Religionless Christianity

Toward the end of his life, while in a Nazi prison, Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote some tantalizing letters to his friend Eberhad Bethage. In some of these letters Bonhoeffer wrestles with a notion he labels "religionless Christianity."

The letters in question were written in 1944. Bonhoeffer was executed by the Nazi's in 1945, just before the Allied Forces were to take control of Germany. Since the writing of those letters, theologians have hotly debated exactly what Bonhoeffer meant by "religionless Christianity." I, personally, have wrestled with the same question. Thus, I'd like to devote a post or two to the question: What is "religionless Christianity"?

I've looked online for copies of the letters but cannot find them. Thus, I've pulled some of the relevant sections from three of Bonhoeffer's letters from prison.




What do you think "religionless Christianity" is?

To Eberhard Bethage, April, 1944:

What is bothering me incessantly is the question what Christianity really is, or indeed who Christ really is, for us today. The time when people could be told everything by means of words, whether theological or pious, is over, and so is the time of inwardness and conscience--and that means the time of religion in general. We are moving toward a completely religionless time; people as they are now simply cannot be religious anymore. Even those who honestly describe themselves as "religious" do not in the least act up to it, and so they presumably mean something quite different by "religious."

Our whole nineteen-hundred-year-old Christian preaching and theology rest on the "religious a priori" of mankind. "Christianity" has always been a form--perhaps the true form--of "religion." But if one day it becomes clear that this a priori does not exist at all, but was a historically conditioned and transient form of human self-expression, and if therefore man becomes radically religionless--and I think that that is already more or less the case (else how is it, for example, that this war, in contrast to all previous ones, is not calling forth any "religious" reaction?)--what does that mean for "Christianity"? It means that the foundation is taken away from the whole of what has up to now been our "Christianity," and that there remain only a few "last survivors of the age of chivalry," or a few intellectually dishonest people that we are to pounce in fervor, pique, or indignation, in order to sell them goods? Are we to fall upon a few unfortunate people in their hour of need and exercise a sort of religious compulsion on them? If we don't want to do all that, if our final judgment must be that the Western form of Christianity, too, was only a preliminary stage to a complete absence of religion, what kind of situation emerges for us, for the church? How can Christ become the Lord of the religionless as well? Are there religionless Christians? If religion is only a garment of Christianity--and even this garment has looked very different at different times--then what is a religionless Christianity?

The questions to be answered would surely be: What do a church, a community, a sermon, a liturgy, a Christian life mean in a religionless world? How do we speak of God--without religion, i.e., without the temporally conditioned presuppositions of metaphysics, inwardness, and so on? How do we speak (or perhaps we cannot now even "speak" as we used to) in a "secular" way about God? In what way are we "religionless-secular" Christians, in what way are we those who are called forth, not regarding ourselves from a religious point of view as specially favored, but rather as belonging wholly to the world? In that case Christ is no longer an object of religion, but something quite different, really the Lord of the world. But what does that mean? What is the place of worship and prayer in a religionless situation?

The Pauline question of whether [circumcision] is a condition of justification seems to me in present-day terms to be whether religion is a condition of salvation. Freedom from [circumcision] is also freedom from religion. I often ask myself why a "Christian instinct" often draws me more to the religionless people than to the religious, but which I don't in the least mean with any evangelizing intention, but, I might almost say, "in brotherhood." While I'm often reluctant to mention God by name to religious people--because that name somehow seems to me here not to ring true, and I feel myself to be slightly dishonest (it's particularly bad when others start to talk in religious jargon; I then dry up almost completely and feel awkward and uncomfortable)--to people with no religion I can on occasion mention him by name quite calmly and as a matter of course.

The transcendence of epistemological theory has nothing to do with the transcendence of God. God is beyond in the midst of our life. The church stands, not at the boundaries where human powers give out, but in the middle of the village...How this religionless Christianity looks, what form it takes, is something that I'm thinking about a great deal, and I shall be writing to you again about it soon. It may be that on us in particular, midway between East and West, there will fall a heavy responsibility.

To Eberhard Bethage, July 18, 1944:

[Religious man] must therefore live in the godless world, without attempting to gloss over or explain its ungodliness in some religious way or other. He must live a "secular" life, and thereby share in God's sufferings. He may live a "secular" life (as one who has been freed from false religious obligations and inhibitions). To be a Christian does not mean to be religious in a particular way, to make something of oneself (a sinner, a penitent, or a saint) on the basis of some method or other, but to be a man--not a type of man, but the man that Christ creates in us. It is not the religious act that makes the Christian, but participation in the sufferings of God in the secular life.

To Eberhard Bethage, July 21, 1944:

During the last year or so I've come to know and understand more and more the profound this-worldliness of Christianity. The Christian is not a homo religiosus, but simply a man, as Jesus was a man...

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30 thoughts on “Bonhoeffer's Religionless Christianity”

  1. To me, it means life. There is so much I want to say about this topic, but I feel limited in my vocabulary and in my resources to adequately explain in my heart what this really means,but I'll try. The only word I can think of is life. It is about all the things you have been talking about, having good habits and possesing empathy and living a life that represents the true character of God. It is NOT about Sunday morning services and how well they are structered. I believe that many people, or maybe not, believe that religion is something that is tangible rather than something that is hidden. Many times we may associate religion with rituals and traditions rather than relationships.

    Over and over again I read in the OT how God despised the worship assembly and the sacrifices. I find it hard to believe that God is so vain that he sits on his throne expecting us to sing and praise him all day long in a manner he wants done. Instead, I read how God wants obedience more than sacrifice, that true fasting is giving to the poor and releasing the yokes of the oppressed. It seems to me, that Christiantiy is nothing less than that. It is not about who is right but who posses empathy for our fellow man and helps him. It is not about preaching in peoples faces but living a life of what has been preached.

    A religionless Christianity means living a life of faith. It is not a flaunting faith or a faith of "beliefs" but a quiet hidden life that shouts the love of God. It is a life where fear is driven away, sin is conquered, and the true self is revealed in which the crucified Christ is glorified!

  2. I think this part is particularly interesting:

    "It means that the foundation is taken away from the whole of what has up to now been our "Christianity," and that there remain only a few "last survivors of the age of chivalry," or a few intellectually dishonest people that we are to pounce in fervor, pique, or indignation, in order to sell them goods? Are we to fall upon a few unfortunate people in their hour of need and exercise a sort of religious compulsion on them? "

    Do you all think he means to say that people interested in "religion" are either intellectually dishonest or undergoing some sort of crisis?

  3. It seems to me that Bonhoeffer is trying to reconcile a shift in his perspective on the metaphysical reality of religion. It seems that Bonhoeffer still finds Christ and the life that he exemplified very (maybe even supremely) valuable to model (and therefore would always call himself a Christian), but that with modern and post-modern thought there is now an ever decreasing place for the belief in religion as a metaphysical reality.

    This is also John A.T. Robinson's famous take in his highly controversial work, Honest to God - possibly the most controversial Christian manuscript of the twentieth century.

    If what I wrote above was not very clear, it could be summarized as this:

    1. Bonhoeffer no longer believes in the metaphysical reality of a God that can be known.
    2. Bonhoeffer has found joy and truth in following Christ.
    3. How do you reconcile 1 and 2? Religionless Christianity - whatever that means!

  4. What do I think "religionless Christianity" is?

    Wow! First, let me say that there must be an element of the failure or impotence of the Church to confront the evil of Nazi Germany in Bonhoeffer's words. And on that I must punt, because I am unworthy to judge those who failed to confront the Nazis, when to do so would presume that I would have done as Bonhoeffer did. I blush.

    An abstract point will let me off the hook, and I'll borrow a couple of lines from Arthur Danto's Nietzsche as Philosopher to make it.

    "If we seek truth, we must then turn our back on this world (so called) in favor of another world more real... This other world may be the noumenal world, the kingdom of heaven, Nirvana, Brahama, the universe of pure Forms... Insofar as metaphysicians demand that, as the price for a difference world, we turn our back on this one, they are, Nietzsche insists, demanding that we turn our backs on life." (p. 75)

    To the extent that Christianity is a metaphysical system and church is a place where people go to do religious things--considered as seperate from the "world"--Nietzsche's critique seems correct.

    An educated Western adult will know this. I think that's part of what he meant--but the easy part, the part that doesn't take courage to advance.


  5. Richard,

    Having noted my comments above in a bit of a hurry, I didn't notice that in choosing "the easy part," that is, noting the loss of metaphysical faith in our Post-modern world as an inmportant element in Bonhoeffer's meaning, that I skipped the real intent of your question: What is religionless Christianity--vs. what it is not!

    Maybe we tend to think of ouraselves as the Enlightened Ones when it comes to this kind of question, forgetting that Isaac, the child of promise in the Abrahamic Covenant, means "Laughter." Or that Paul called "the message about the cross" foolishness to Gentiles and a Stumbling block to Jews. In fact to at least one very notable Christian thinker, the gospel is the Paradox--the unthinkable event of God the infinite, eternal One who became one of us.

    So, perhaps, we have become too dulled to the gospel message to be surprised and astounded and confronted and perplexed, etc., by it. And having lost that sensibility, we now confront a misguided dilemma--how to integrate the gospel into our world views: perhaps the gospel is supposed to break up our world view by allowing us to believe that God has broken into our world and upset our ordinary ways of seeing and believing...

    I think this may be the extent of what we can understand: we are invited to live as if the Kingdom of Heaven is real and we are being prepared for entry into it, all the while understanding that we live under a veil of ignorance with regard to it. And it is faith's role to have the courage to accept that this is so.

    In this view revelation gives us no foothold in another world, just membership in it for now, making "religion" false if that means thinking religious thoughts as though they set up categorins seperate from this world. The role of true Christian faith, given this view, would be to drive us into the world to live as disciples of the Christ, the Son of God, who broke into the world to invite us to dare to be his subjects...

    There's my take.


  6. It is amazing how pertinent Bonhoeffer's struggle is to our Christianity today. I find myself resonating with his comments about becoming more drawn to the "religionless people" than the religious. It seems(in my humble opinion) that Christianity (religion), in our culture, has become more about protecting what Christianity is "supposed" to look like. We are circling the wagons and moving ourselves and our children away from anything that doesn't fit into a pre-conceived mold of "religious" programing and the narrow confines of what God is "supposed" to look like.

    It seems the "religionless" are more honest about the world and the ugly things that go on in it. I believe that God is right to be found in the midst of the ugliness, getting his hands and feet dirty, asking us to stretch beyond ourselves, our understanding, and our comfort ... I believe God is asking us to let go of protecting and defending "the church" and just live authentic, faithful lives in the midst of a world that brings both joy and suffering.

  7. You know, Richard, it's funny that we brought this up on the same day on both of our blogs unbeknownst to each other. Maybe it is both of us getting ready for our papers next year on constructing a Christian hermeneutic of culture that will probably only be worthwhile thinking beyond "Church-ianity." Thanks for bringing this up. I am personally pretty burned out on maintaining institutions that only serve us.

  8. At one time I considered Religionless Christianity to be a theological response by Bonhoeffer to the circumstances of his life. Having been forbidden to preach, teach or even speak in public, he needed to find another way to communicate his faith in a nonverbal way outside the boundaries of the traditional church.

    However, I now think that this experience was a revelation that thrust into sharp relief the inherent contradiction between the great commission and our practice of locking Christianity inside buildings, rituals, and bureaucratic structures.

    It goes back to the central theme of the Cost of Discipleship and the difference between cheap grace and costly grace. Cheap grace is shutting yourself away from the world to practice you faith only among those who believe as you do. Costly grace entails the risk of exposure, ridicule, and potential persecution or death (in some places). Bonhoeffer practiced his faith in public and became a martyr is an example of costly grace.

    Religionless Christianity is a call to stop being 'hobby Christians' (I love that term) and living a life where "every footstep is a prayer" (from Native American tradition).
    - Scavok

  9. Roxanne,
    I think "life" is a great response. I'm struck by DB's phrase that Jesus was "a man." Not a kind of man, but "a man." That is, Christianity/Life is simply being a man or a woman, and allowing Christ to define that.

    I think he means that. That people grab hold of religion for selfish reasons (e.g., comfort) and that "evangelism" is too often capitalizing on this weakness/delusion/need.

    The Nietzsche quote is powerful. I'm struck by the image of "religion" as trading in the world right in front of me for some other "world" far distant.

    I'm affected by the same thing: Being drawn to the religionless. I particularly identify with DB's hesitance to even name God in the presence of religious people for fear of misunderstanding!

    Yes, quite a coincidence! But maybe not. I think there are lots of us thinking about "authentic Christianity" and how we should relate to or feel about traditional Christian institutions. I feel this acutely given that I work at a Christian U. I'm sure you can identify.

    I've also wondered about your earlier contextual critique: Were these ideas just DB reacting to his situation? But I agree with your current assessment: There is some kind of violation when we make Christianity a "religion." It seems the whole thrust of Jesus's life was the dismantling of religious structures to allow for people to encounter each other in more authentic ways.

  10. Richard,

    There are elements of religion that can be termed mystical and they are usually more common at the onset of a religion. Christianity and Islam come to mind. However, this experiential life becomes codified into doctrine and experience morfs into belief and dogma and all the machinery of an organization. Zen talks about the finger pointing at the moon. It's the difference between experiencing the moon and focusing on your pointing technique.

    Maybe DB was thinking about living a life in a Christ like manner without getting caught up in the mental grasping for a mastery of theology and all its symbols.

    Others here have said the same thing more eloquently but I couldn't help pointing out the mystic tradition in various religious faiths that seems to me to be similar to what DB was suggesting.

    Rick T.

  11. Without reading the other comments, I think religionless Christianity is Christ pure, without taint of institutionalised thinking. It's a simple relationship between him and me without the system of religious obligation that has grown up and tried to choke the life out of that simplicity (because we do keep trying to de-tooth the lion)

  12. Sue, well phrased.

    Perhaps to oversimplify, relgionless Christianity is a de-institutionalised, living, vibrant communion with the Living God.
    To know God and not simply to know "about" Him. It is a life where Christ forms Himself in the very essence of who we are rather than an institution telling us who we should be. It's having an intimate, organic, fellowship with God, without the instituition telling me how to love, or the form
    and creed I should mentally ascent to in order to "be right".
    Jesus said " This is eternal life, That they may know You,the only true God, and Jesus Christ who You have sent". That's it. Knowing Him,
    finding what you're looking for in Him. But I see religion as the very thing Jesus opposed when He walked the earth, and I believe He still does.
    Can humanity institutionalise Love, and Grace, and Mercy...God Himself. I'm passionate about divorcing God from institutions and just living Love in Him, and sharing life with others,"in Him" and those who are outside our man made religious walls.

  13. I believe that "Religionless Christianity" can possibly be understood with analogy. One analogous phrase would be "a colorless window" or more simply put " a transparent window". Religion relies on symbols and rituals to point us to a spiritual truth. Bonhoeffer is asserting that there is another path to Christianity. He is stating that religion is an obsolete methodology to find (and even continue) "the Way." He ponders then about an oxymoron (i.e. secular Christianity). Is there a method to communicate Christianity that does not rely on any mythology? Recall Bonhoeffer believes that Barth did not go far enough in de-mythologizing Christianity. I think we find it in the Bible independent of religion. Jesus is "the Way, the Truth and the Life" and "No one has ever seen God, but he who abides in Love abides in God and God in him." This is religionless Christianity if we take these phrases literally. So rather than argue religion against science, we argue that God is truth. We are now all speaking about the same thing in the same language - which is now outside of religion and secular. For it is clearer today than ever, that truth itself is something that we need to believe in. For example, even Ayn Rand writes: "Reason is not automatic". This is in contrast to Newton's time when people thought that "truth" was a priori.

  14. If anyone is interested I did a dissertation on Bonhoeffer's 'Religionless Christianity', which I would be happy to send you, tracing its formation from the ideologies of his 'teachers' and the influence of his historical circumstances through His writings and ideologies towards and exegetical exposition of the term. This is significantly different than what has been done before and therefore brings to light many things which have previously gone unseen in the development of Bonhoeffer's thought and the extreme importance of this term to all of Bonhoeffers Christo-ethical Theo-philosophy.

    An edited form of this will soon be published on a new theological journal entitled 'Fedelity'

    It was life transforming for me; drastically informing my theology, philosophy and ethics, bringing about a cohesive view of 'reality' and thus 'world-view' which had hitherto eluded me.

    If you would like a copy please email me at

  15. Coincidentally,

    Some who wish to act on their interpretation of a "religionless Christianity" may end up devising a new religion with the same institutional implications. Replace church building with the local pub, the homily with a group discussion... cap it off with a celebration of Communion on the beach and you soon have religion and institution (albeit revamped) all over again. The only significant change is that the church has lost its locus in the center of the village. Is our attempt to strip Christ of religious significance merely a theologically swank way of avoiding "being persecuted for the cross of Christ" (Gal.6:12)?

    Recall that the Judaziers confronted in Paul's epistle enforced circumcision-and all that it entailed- for the very reason stated above! Are we "cutting" off the fleshly layer of the church in order to avoid persecution from todays culture? God forbid it that we do.

  16. It means that God doesn't have right in our life. It is kind of secularization of religion. It seems not work because God has a rule in our life. According to Atheism, it works! Actually, it refers to our understanding about what God means in our life.

  17. Ive always felt the Christian symbols have been sullied over time. A religionless Christianity in my view, would be a Christianity cleansed of many of the implications that have attached to the terms like God or faith, over the centuries.

  18. The more I consider this notion of a religionless christianity, the more it becomes apparent that Bonhoeffer had in his later days, actually gone beyond the liberal theology he once critiqued from the conesrvative side. In his last printed thoughts on the subject of religion and theology, he began to see that even liberal theology was more than the world could now bear. He also apparently realized that the method of correlation which Tillich adopted as his own, was in fact the way Jesus himself had reached out to the world

  19. This is a great blog and I am glad I just found it.

    There is a book entitled The Conquest of Society by Putney which is unfortunately out of print but you can get used copies at Amazon. The premise is that when organizations mature they become concerned with their own survival and people become a tool for that. The original purpose is lost. Humans are no longer in control but are controlled. We know from systems theory that as a system matures, any system, it also becomes more complex. Those two phenomenon seem to coincide to me. The "church" becomes institutionalized and over time the emphasis becomes the new sound system, a new addition, hiring a new pastor, and the original emphasis is lost.

    Remember that Bonhoeffer was very troubled by the fact that the institutional church had advised him not to preside over the funeral of his brother in law who was Jewish. He regretted that decision for the rest of his life. He also saw how the institutional church accommodated itself to the Nazi regime. Why?

    Institutions are no longer concerned with the primary purposes for which they are created. Big universities become more concerned with survival than educating. The University of Missouri just raised a billion dollars and built more buildings and increased tuition. If it was really interested in education those funds would have been used for other purposes. Same thing with churches.

    I see huge churches here in Columbia, Missouri, which are like theaters. Yet precious few of those institutions reach out to help the poor and the forgotten.

    By the way, I am Jewish but I think that the core message of Christianity is great and that the historical Jesus would be appalled at what we call the church now days. By the way, every single criticism I leveled at Christianity is also an issue with synagogues. Same dynamic.

  20. Great subject and nicely put invitation to reflect on the texts in question.  I personally think 'religionless Christianity' was Bonhoeffer's expression of his frustration at living in an age where the reality of it all is in question and hence his frequent annoyance at things like metaphysics, epistemology and philosophical ethics.  He yearns for conversation and company where there is no issue in talking straightforwardly about that which he cherishes, God.  His phenomenological description of his own awkwardness around religious people is something very personally familiar to me, insightful indeed. 

    Unfortunately I think this is an eschatological yearning and so the frustration is something all of us have to learn to live with until such fulsome resolution.  Metaphysics is also a misplaced attack I think, as most metaphysics ever since Plato is also mostly concerned with getting at the reality of it all without distortion or filtering.  Perhaps not possible of course, but 'temporally conditioned presuppositions of metaphysics' is technically an oxymoron, probably intentionally signalling its failure.  

    Most of the time I suspect an attack on 'religion' is slightly a gimmick trying to portray oneself as seeking something else more authentic.  This was reinforced for me when I heard someone from another religion (the irony of using this word now *sigh*) describing their faith as not a religion or religious, but a living relationship and a way of life.  I am not committed to a word like 'religion', but I honestly dont see the concept they war against.  Any attempt to give content often instantly upsets the point, example: religion as ritual? But I love ritual!  Rightly so, I think. The Bible often talks of bad religion, but it looks like its talking about people abusing religion for their own ends, setting up idols to control people etc, and not the meaning of religion itself.  Misplaced attacks can be made by important thinkers and theologians alike - dont get me wrong, I admire Bonhoeffer greatly, despite often disagreeing with him. 

  21. I don't think Bonhoeffer is being the least bit optimistic. He is deeply concerned that Christianity as he knew it was ending, just like so much ended with the Second World War.

    Roxanne, you write:

    Over and over again I read in the OT how God despised the worship assembly and the sacrifices. I find it hard to believe that God is so vain that he sits on his throne expecting us to sing and praise him all day long in a manner he wants done. Instead, I read how God wants obedience more than sacrifice, that true fasting is giving to the poor and releasing the yokes of the oppressed. It seems to me, that Christiantiy is nothing less than that. It is not about who is right but who posses empathy for our fellow man and helps him. It is not about preaching in peoples faces but living a life of what has been preached. 

    Where does God say he despises the worship assembly, if only that it is not genuine and hypocritical? I think that we can only do away with religion, as we know it, which seems to be synonymous with legalism these days, only if the commandments have been imprinted on our hearts.  If we really are co-creators and priests, Jesus being the high priest, then we damn well better start being genuine about that. I am not suggesting that it is by this or that standard, this or that theology.  I am merely saying that we need to be genuine. Being spiritual isn't enough. Is it? Can anyone seriously say that they are like priests to God? That their faith is more than just believing in what you can't see? That you are willing and able to put it all on the line for God and are willing to take what comes at you with true joy?

  22. Michael,
    I would love to get a copy of your dissertation on Bonhoeffer's "Religionless" Christianity.
    Thank you very much.

  23. This makes sense to me cause all I can say is the being religious in the negative sense isn't good but being filled with the Holy spirit and using the gifts of the holy spirit and having the fruits of the holy spirit are more important then being religious. 

  24. Richard, thank you for posting this. I stumbled across this post while searching for some religionless Christianity resources. I have linked to this post in an online Lenten study that I am leading for my church. So, if you end up getting a number of hits in the next few days, that might be why. Your work looks to be very interesting, and you seem to explore many topics that I am interested in.  I look forward to exploring more of your blog. 

  25. I think that Bonhoeffer was a great predicter of what Christianity would become in this time(21 centuary).

    Churches abandonded but JESUS is still present in europian life and culture I think. Christianity still remains fondamental in europian identity as certainely Islam remains in turkish or marocain etc identity.
    So deep is Christianity that when for example an italian decides to convert to islam he ceases to be italian too.

  26. Great post, Richard. Thank you! I have pondered this issue for many decades, beginning in the mid 1960's. Here's what has evolved in me so far. For me, religion is the cultural expression of a spiritual insight, an event, a spiritual reality. It is not the spiritual reality itself. It can only point to it and minister to it. In this regard it is a human endeavor and, therefore, subject to the human condition and is co-opted by the human condition. Religions require constant self-examination and renewal in order to authentically express the spiritual reality they represent. Unless renewal plays an essential, constant and ongoing role in a religion, the religion will, over time, drift away from its source - i.e. the history of Christianity. If Jesus came today would he even recognize Christianity? I doubt it. The monolithic Christian institutions would appear to him, I suspect, like the Jewish religious institution he encountered in the first century where the letter of the Law completely eclipsed the spirit of the Law - its source. In this context It appears to me that the life of Jesus was not essentially "religious" but rather spiritual. His teaching does not speak of religious practices of sacrifice to appease a vengeful god. It is rather a revelation of the true nature of humanity. It is humanity centered - with an understanding that divinity already abides in the heart of humanity and not in the temple. His was a consciousness raising ministry - beyond "religion". If Christianity were able to digest this it would then be at the service of the Jesus event - and not at the service to the religious tradition.

  27. Please send me a copy of your dissertation on Bonhoeffer's 'Religionless Christianity' in order to have an awareness about his concern and have a

    further study on the subject.


    Shibu Mathew (

  28. A great question. Bonhoeffer seems to repeat the intuitions of many of his day, inside and outside of the church. God was "dead" in the culture of Europe, Bonhoeffer recognized that the church in Germany had been powerless as a social force to stop the Nazi neo-paganism. People like Bonhoeffer had abandoned hope in the religious organizations that had supported the government that was clearly evil. I think Bonhoeffer was also greatly influenced by American ideas of the inviolability of the individual and recognized that having to participate in any religion might put a Christian in a position where they had to disobey the religion in order to stand with the Christian conscience.

    To me, religionless Christianity is the stated norm in the United States. People want to believe what they want, worship how they want, where they want with whatever music they want, and, in the end, they can have it any way they want. Religion is a herd technology and culture without it leads to a culture of cats rather than the culture of sheep. The question is, if non-worldly Christianity is possible, what could it do to change the world?

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