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 Dorothy L. Sayers Quotes
10 Famous Quotes by Dorothy L. Sayers
6/13/1893 - 12/17/1957
Also Known As:  
Dorothy Sayers     Dorothy Leigh Sayers
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About Dorothy L. Sayers

Continuing a short series on sin: Evil is the soul's choice of the not-God. The corollary is that damnation or hell, is the permanent choice of the not-God. God does not (in the monstrous old-fashioned phrase) "send" anybody to hell; hell is that state of the soul in which its choice becomes obdurate and fixed; the punishment (so to call it) of that soul is to remain eternally in that State which it has chosen.

Christianity Quotes, by Dorothy L. Sayers

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THE PRESENTATION OF CHRIST IN THE TEMPLE Setting aside the scandal caused by His Messianic claims and His reputation as a political firebrand, only two accusations of personal depravity seem to have been brought against Jesus of Nazareth. First, that He was a Sabbath-breaker. Secondly, that He was "a gluttonous man and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners" -- or (to draw aside the veil of Elizabethan English that makes it sound so much more respectable) that He ate too heartily, drank too freely, and kept very disreputable company, including grafters of the lowest type and ladies who were no better than they should be. For nineteen and a half centuries, the Christian Churches have laboured, not without success, to remove this unfortunate impression made by their Lord and Master. They have hustled the Magdalens from the Communion-table, founded Total Abstinence Societies in the name of Him who made the water wine, and added improvements of their own, such as various bans and anathemas upon dancing and theatre-going. They have transferred the Sabbath from Saturday to Sunday, and, feeling that the original commandment "Thou shalt not work" was rather half-hearted, have added to it the new commandment, "Thou shalt not play.".

Christianity Quotes, by Dorothy L. Sayers

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Feast of Thomas the Apostle Those who make it a reproach to Christianity that it taught no new morality and invented no new kind of Deity could not be more laughably wide of the mark. What it did was to guarantee that the old morality was actually valid, and the old beliefs literally true. "Ye worship ye know not what, but we know what we worship," "that which we have seen with our eyes and our hands have handled" -- "He suffered under Pontius Pilate." God died -- not in a legend, not in a symbol, not in a distant past nor in a realm unknown, but here, [in the crucifiction of Christ]; the whole great cloudy castle of natural religion and poetic prophecy is brought down to earth and firmly cemented upon that angular and solid cornerstone.

Christianity Quotes, by Dorothy L. Sayers

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Feast of Timothy and Titus, Companions of Paul Commemoration of Dorothy Kerin, Founder of the Burrswood Healing Community, 1963 That you cannot have Christian principles without Christ is becoming increasingly clear [in the world today], because their validity as principles depends on Christ's authority.

Christianity Quotes, by Dorothy L. Sayers

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Few things are more striking than the change which has taken place during my own lifetime in the attitude of the intelligentsia towards the spokesmen of Christian opinion. When I was a child, bishops expressed doubts about the Resurrection, and were called courageous. When I was a girl, G. K. Chesterton professed belief in the Resurrection, and was called whimsical. When I was at college, thoughtful people expressed belief in the Resurrection "in a spiritual sense", and were called advanced; (any other kind of belief was called obsolete, and its professors were held to be simpleminded). When I was middle-aged, a number of lay persons, including some poets and writers of popular fiction, put forward rational arguments for the Resurrection, and were called courageous. Today, any lay apologist for Christianity... whose works are sold and read, is liable to be abused in no uncertain terms as a mountebank, a reactionary, a tool of the Inquisition, a spiritual snob, an intellectual bully, an escapist, an obstructionist, a psychopathic introvert, an insensitive extrovert, and an enemy of society. The charges are not always mutually compatible, but the common animus behind them is unmistakable, and its name is fear. Writers who attack these domineering Christians are called courageous.

Christianity Quotes, by Dorothy L. Sayers

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"The Kingdom of Heaven", said the Lord Christ, "is among you." But what, precisely, is the Kingdom of Heaven? You cannot point to existing specimens, saying, "Lo, here!" or "Lo, there!" You can only experience it. But what is it like, so that when we experience it we may recognize it? Well, it is a change, like being born again and relearning everything from the start. It is secret, living power -- like yeast. It is something that grows, like seed. It is precious like buried treasure, like a rich pearl, and you have to pay for it. It is a sharp cleavage through the rich jumble of things which life presents: like fish and rubbish in a draw-net, like wheat and tares; like wisdom and folly; and it carries with it a kind of menacing finality; it is new, yet in a sense it was always there -- like turning out a cupboard and finding there your own childhood as well as your present self; it makes demands, it is like an invitation to a royal banquet -- gratifying, but not to be disregarded, and you have to live up to it; where it is equal, it seems unjust; where it is just it is clearly not equal -- as with the single pound, the diverse talents, the labourers in the vineyard, you have what you bargained for; it knows no compromise between an uncalculating mercy and a terrible justice -- like the unmerciful servant, you get what you give; it is helpless in your hands like the King's Son, but if you slay it, it will judge you; it was from the foundations of the world; it is to come; it is here and now; it is within you. It is recorded that the multitudes sometimes failed to understand.

Christianity Quotes, by Dorothy L. Sayers

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Setting aside the scandal caused by His Messianic claims and His reputation as a political firebrand, only two accusations of personal depravity seem to have been brought against Jesus of Nazareth. First, that He was a Sabbath-breaker. Secondly, that He was "a gluttonous man and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners" -- or (to draw aside the veil of Elizabethan English that makes it sound so much more respectable) that He ate too heartily, drank too freely, and kept very disreputable company, including grafters of the lowest type and ladies who were no better than they should be. For nineteen and a half centuries, the Christian Churches have laboured, not without success, to remove this unfortunate impression made by their Lord and Master. They have hustled the Magdalens from the Communion-table, founded Total Abstinence Societies in the name of Him who made the water wine, and added improvements of their own, such as various bans and anathemas upon dancing and theatre-going. They have transferred the Sabbath from Saturday to Sunday, and, feeling that the original commandment "Thou shalt not work" was rather half-hearted, have added to it the new commandment, "Thou shalt not play.".

Christianity Quotes, by Dorothy L. Sayers

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Commemoration of Margery Kempe, Mystic, after 1433 Contempt of material things as such is, in fact, no more orthodox than pantheism -- it is the great dualist heresy which always lies in wait for an over-spiritualized Christianity.

Christianity Quotes, by Dorothy L. Sayers

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Feast of Aelred of Hexham, Abbot of Rievaulx, 1167 Commemoration of Benedict Biscop, Abbot of Wearmouth, Scholar, 689 I think I have never heard a sermon preached on the story of Mary and Martha that did not attempt, somehow, somewhere, to explain away its text. Mary's, of course, was the better part -- the Lord said so, and we must not precisely contradict Him. But we will be careful not to despise Martha. No doubt, He approved of her, too. We could not get on without her, and indeed, having paid lip-service to God's opinion, we must admit that we greatly prefer her, for Martha was doing a really feminine job, whereas Mary was just behaving like any other disciple; and that is a hard pill to swallow.

Christianity Quotes, by Dorothy L. Sayers

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Continuing a short series of verse on Christ: Hard it is, very hard, To travel up the slow and stony road To Calvary, to redeem mankind; far better To make but one resplendent miracle, Lean through the cloud, lift the right hand of power And with a sudden lightning smite the world perfect. Yet this was not God's way, Who had the power, But set it by, choosing the cross, the thorn, The sorrowful wounds. Something there is, perhaps, That power destroys in passing, something supreme, To whose great value in the eyes of God That cross, that thorn, and those five wounds bear witness.

Christianity Quotes, by Dorothy L. Sayers

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