Personal piety has become widespread, but unfortunately it is confined to what could be called purely religious experience, which cannot stand before God. Many of these exclusively religious movements have arisen in recent years, confining themselves to preaching and personal confessions of faith, to a private experience of the Savior and a very limited personal sanctification. However much we rejoice that people are awakened to a love for Jesus, that they experience forgiveness of sin in His death on the Cross, we must state that Christ’s love and the meaning of His death on the Cross are not fully understood if they are restricted to the individual’s subjective experience of salvation. It was to be foreseen years ago that the influence of modern theology would be disastrous. True, it did show us something great: God is totally other than all our movements for personal salvation or social reform. Yet a one-sided emphasis on this otherness, which removes the living God to the distant Beyond, is bound to have the effect of minimizing or even suppressing social responsibility.
-Eberhard Arnold, 1934
In other news, Eberhard Arnold clearly did not cause ladies to swoon from his looks, but the intellect and the discipleship…maybe?