By Soren Trs. Lowrie Kierkegaard
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Additional info for Attack Upon ''Christendom'' 1854-1855
Hence it is that people do not understand, and therefore censor it, when a protest is raised against a witness to the truth who from a Christian point of view is just as ridiculous as that maiden. " One can be both this and that, and at the same time a dilettante violinist, member of a lodge, Schutzen\dnig, etc. The significant thing has precisely this characteristic, that just in proportion as it is significant it is less possible for a man to be that and at the same time something else. And the definition "witness to the truth" is a very domineering definition; strictly speaking, it can be combined only with being, apart from that, nothing at all.
The rude, actual question is: what are you to become? Perhaps it was providential that he died when he did. By prodigious industry he had said at the age of forty-two all that he had to say. He said it powerfully. He challenged the whole lot of us with a stringency that none but the obtuse can evade. The proud S0ren Kierkegaard was capable of humility. Refusing the titles of prophet, apostle, or reformer, he claimed nothing more for himself than that he was a "corrective"—and he repeated a thousand times that the corrective, no matter how needed, must never become the normative.
And as the "way" has become a different one, indeed the very opposite, so too has the interpretation of Biblical passages become different. When we read in the New Testament the passage which Bishop Martensen used in the memorial address, Hebrews 13:7, "Remember those who had the rule over you . . e. see that their life was sheer renunciation and sheer suffering for the doctrine; remain true to yourselves until the last, do not regret having sacrificed everything, but also in death, perhaps a martyr's death, preserve the boldness of faith—in this way it is now no longer to be understood; no, you shall now understand it thus, as Bishop Martensen teaches: Consider Bishop Mynster, see the issue of his life, consider that he attained the rank of Excellency; consider the issue of his life, you yourselves know what preparations were made for the most pompous funeral: consider this, and follow him, he is the way, not Christ, who says warningly, "What is exalted among men is an abomination in the sight of God" (Luke 16:15).
Attack Upon ''Christendom'' 1854-1855 by Soren Trs. Lowrie Kierkegaard