“Just because Christianity is the true ethic, it knows how to shorten deliberations and cut short prolix instructions, to remove all provisional waiting and preclude all waste of time. Christianity is involved in the task immediately, because it has brought the task along. There is, indeed, great debate going on in the world about what should be called the highest good. But whatever it is called at the moment, whatever variations there are, it is unbelievable how many prolexities are involved in grasping it.”
“Christianity, however, teaches a man immediately the shortest way to find the highest good: shut your door and pray to God – for God is still the highest. And when a man will go out into the world, he can go a long way – and go in vain – he can wander the world around – and in vain – all in order to find the beloved or the friend. But Christianity never suffers a man to go in vain, not even a single step, for when you open the door which you shut in order to pray to God, the first person you meet as you go out is your neighbor whom you shall love. Wonderful!” (Soren Kierkegaard, “Works of Love” p. 64.)
Kierkegaard has actually told us how to keep all the commandments of God.
34 But when the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. 35 And one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. 36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37 And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. 38 This is the great and first commandment. 39 And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. 40 On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” Matthew 22;34-39, English Standard Version
Here I will summarize Kierkegaard on how to keep the two commandments on which depend all the law and prophets:
- Shut your door and pray to God.
- Open your door and go out.
- The first person you see is your neighbor, whom you shall love.
Any comments, questions, or critiques are always welcome. Thank you!
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BMC @ Manifest Propensity, 2013