No priest, no theologian stood at the manger of Bethlehem. And yet all Christian theology has its origin in the wonder of all wonders: that God became human. Holy theology arises from knees bent before the mystery of the divine child in the stable. Without the holy night, there is no theology. "God is revealed in flesh," the . . .
Who among us will celebrate Christmas correctly? Whoever finally lays down all power, all honor, all reputation, all vanity, all arrogance, all individualism beside the manger; whoever remains lowly and lets God alone be high; whoever looks at the child in the manger and sees the glory of God precisely in his lowliness.
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If [Jesus] had given signs, as was demanded of him, they would have believed him. But at the the point where it really mattered, he held back. And that created the scandal. Yet everything depends on this fact...If Christ had documented himself with miracles, we would naturally believe, but then Christ would not be our salvation, for then . . .
God travels wonderful ways with human beings, but he does not comply with the views and opinions of people. God does not go the way that people want to prescribe for him; rather, his way is beyond all comprehension, free and self-determined beyond all proof...And that is the wonder of all wonders, that God loves the lowly...God is not . . .
The greatest mystery is not the most distant star; on the contrary, the closer something comes to us and the better we know it, then the more mysterious it becomes for us. The greatest mystery to us is not the most distant person, but the one next to us. The mystery of other people is not reduced by getting to know more and more about . . .
The lack of mystery in our modern life is our downfall and our poverty...Living without mystery means knowing nothing of the mystery of our own life, nothing of the mystery of another person, nothing of the mystery of the world; it means passing over our own hidden qualities and those of others and the world. It means remaning on the . . .
Life in a prison cell may well be compared to Advent: one waits, hopes, and does this, that, or the other--things that are really of no consequence--the door is shut, and can only be opened from the outside.
-- Dietrich Bonhoeffer, God Is In The Manger