Christian Nationalism is at America’s Doorstep and It’s Terrifying
In 1932, the German Christians were established shortly before Hitler took power in Germany. Once the Führer succeeded in taking over the German Government, The German Christians strongly supported the new Nazi government, embracing nationalism, racism, and anti-Semitism.
In response, The Confessing Church was founded to oppose The German Christians. They believed that the Church’s commitment was to God, not a wannabe emperor with a lame mustache and an anger problem.
Both churches were German evangelical churches. They fought bitterly over the role of German Evangelism in people’s lives and politics. It was either neutrality, they stood by and watched the terror unfold across Europe, or they joined in the terror, enlisting in the Wehrmacht.
Should the church remain neutral or support the Nazi beliefs that many constituent members held?
Sixty percent of the Nazi Party was German Protestants.
Hang on to that number. It’ll come in handy.
Even though The Confessing Church was technically neutral, they published a slew of anti-Semitic propaganda. They reproduced the writings of Martin Luther, founder of Protestantism, printing tens of thousands of copies of Martin Luther über die Juden: Weg mit ihnen!
Translation: Martin Luther on the Jews: Away with Them!
Hardly what I’d call “neutral” but okay.
Either way, they didn’t put up much of a fight against Nazism, and both groups aided the Nazis in their takeover of Europe.
Then came a strange twist…
Later in Hitler’s reign, the Nazis used The German Christian church to take control of German Evangelicals completely. The attempt failed. After the horrific nature of the Nazis came to light, Evangelicals decided to remain neutral and quit pushing propaganda.
Some objected to enlistment in the Wehrmacht. Others were angry over children forced into Hitler Youth. Some protested and were sent to the gas chambers over it.