Barth: “the world must become light”

It is not only ‘we’, that is to say, our souls, our inner and personal life which must become light. Rather, the world must become light; everything around us must become light. We must not separate the two from one another. Unbelief is hidden in this separation . . . You may not say and think: I do want the light to apply to me personally and will strive to be subject to the will of God even in the small things. But what does it matter to me whether self-interest and stupidity and animal instincts rule outside, in the world of commerce, in public morality, in politics great and small? Let it be so! so long as I save my soul in this evil world. To speak or think that way is to speak or think in large measure as one who does not know God.
—Karl Barth, Sermon of Feb. 23, 1913, qtd. in Bruce McCormack, Karl Barth’s Critically Realistic Dialectical Theology: Its Genesis and Development, 1909-1936 (New York: Oxford University Press, 1995), 96.