Bonhoeffer's Theology of Church Discipline
Samuel CHIOW

For Bonhoeffer church discipline is the "dynamics of transformation" at work in the church-community. Church discipline is a collective responsibility of the church-community. Church-community is where sanctification is done. Sanctification is proven in the living out of the gospel. The Church-community must subject herself to the discipline of the Word. Church discipline, as part and parcel of the sanctification of the church-community, is Christological and eschatological in that it is forward moving toward the day of the coming of Christ. The practice of church discipline is necessary for the church-community to live "a life worthy of the gospel." The aim of this paper is to distil from Bonhoeffer's ecclesiology his understanding of the dynamic of transformation in the communal act of church discipline. Church discipline for Bonhoeffer "is necessary, visible consequence of the proper exercise of the office of the keys within the church-community."