The offensiveness of the Gospel

And now Christianity! Christianity teaches that this single human being, and so every single human being, whether husband, wife, servant girl, cabinet minister, merchant, barber, student, etc., this single human being is before God — this single human being, who might be proud to have spoken once in his life with the king, this human being who hasn’t the least illusion of being on an intimate footing with this or that person, this human being is before God, can talk with God any time he wants, certain of being heard; in short this human being has an invitation to live on the most intimate footing with God! Furthermore, for this person’s sake, for the sake of this very person too, God comes into the world, lets himself be born, suffers, dies; and this suffering God, he well-night begs and implores this human being to accept the help offered to him! Truly, if there is anything one should lose one’s mind over, this is it! Every person who does not have the humble courage to dare to believe it is offended. But why is he offended? Because it is too exalted for him, because he cannot make sense of it, because he cannot be open and frank in the face of it, and therefore must have it removed, made into nothing, into madness and nonsense, for it is as if it were about to choke him.

Søren Kierkegaard, The Sickness unto Death, Part 2, Chapter 1, Addendum

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