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The Basis of our Community
by Deitrich Bonhoeffer

The fact that we are brethren only through Jesus Christ is of immeasurable significance. Not only the other person who is earnest and devout, who comes to me seeking brotherhood, must I deal with in fellowship. My brother is rather that other person who has been redeemed by Christ, delivered from sin and called to faith and eternal life.

Our community with one another consists solely of what Christ has done to both of us. I have community with others and I shall continue to have community only through Jesus Christ. The more genuine and the deeper our community becomes, the more will everything else between us recede, the more clearly and purely will Jesus Christ and His work become the one and only thing that is vital between us.

Christian community is not an ideal which we must realize; it is rather a reality created by God in Christ in which we may participate.

Excerpts from 'Devotional Classics' edited by Richard Foster and James Bryan Smith
Deitrich Bonhoeffer (1906-1945)