The Faithful Church Resisted Nazism



Nazi Church Altar

The Lie:

Christians supported Nazism and even Hitler was a Christian.

The Truth:

Hitler did not serve the Christian God and the Bible-believing Christians of the “Confessing Church” formed the only internally organized opposition to Hitler and Nazism.

“Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. – Colossians 2:8, KJV


Unfortunately, at the same time evangelicals were going out into the world to serve as missionaries, bringing the Good News to people of all tribes and nations, at Tubingen University in Germany, one of the most destructive developments to ever come against the Bible would be birthed.

Proponents of the historical-critical movement would declare that wherever advances in science, history, and archaeology seemed to conflict with the biblical record, Christians should concede to the “facts” and toss aside the Bible. This was the beginning of modern liberal theology.

Historical Criticism

     Before the historical-critical movement, Francis Bacon’s scientific method was only applied to the study of the physical world. The empirical pursuit of truth in areas such as biology, chemistry, and geology had long been an established practice, but the German intelligentsia thought they could apply the same standards and methods of research to the more subjective fields of study such as psychology, history, anthropology, or sociology. This was how the term “social sciences” came into being.

     If scientific methods could be applied to the study of history, for example, the truth of the past would be more likely to be found. Thus, historian Leopold von Ranke claimed, they were more likely to uncover “how things actually were,” in a scientific sense.[1]  Archaeology grew in importance, records were combed, artifacts were gathered, and museums were created to house their discoveries.

This method of discovering historical truth would even be applied to theology. Scholars would now begin to employ “scientific” methods to try to determine the truthfulness of the Bible. F. C. Bauer (who was influenced by the philosopher Hegel), and Julius Wellhausen (creator of the “documentary hypothesis”[2]), would have an expanding influence throughout Germany. (In England and America, initially, there was opposition to its spread.) Instead of believing and trusting in the content of the Bible, the historical-critical movement would expose the Scriptures to the scrutiny of the new scientific methods.

The historicist concept of discovering history “as it really was” would now be applied to the biblical text, each verse being tested in a way that only that which could be proven would be accepted as the truth. No longer was the Bible to be trusted simply because of its sacred nature, instead, empirical evidence was the plumb line that the Bible was to be measured against, so if portions of the biblical text couldn’t be proven through archaeology, or confirmed by other ancient texts, for example, then the authenticity of that portion of the Bible would come into question.

Alister McGrath, the Professor of Historical Theology at Oxford University, explained how this led to the historical critics’ abandonment of the Word as a source of authority:

Liberalism’s program required a significant degree of flexibility in relation to traditional Christian theology. Its leading writers argued that reconstruction of belief was essential if Christianity were to remain a serious intellectual option in the modern world. For this reason, they demanded a degree of freedom in relation to the doctrinal inheritance of Christianity on one hand, and traditional methods of biblical interpretation on the other. Where traditional ways of interpreting Scripture, or traditional beliefs, seemed to be compromised by developments in human knowledge, it was imperative that they should be discarded or reinterpreted to bring them into line with what was known in the world [emphasis added].[3]

     Because of the influence of Darwinian evolution, in particular, many Christians felt they had to synthesize their faith with modern knowledge. Since traditional biblical doctrines (such as the belief in six days of creation) were supposedly outmoded, Christianity could no longer be looked at as a religion of truth; it had to be reinterpreted to become a religion of human experience whose ethical teachings would be used to propel humanity forward towards progress and prosperity. McGrath explained the change:

Liberalism was inspired by the vision of a humanity which was ascending upward into new realms of progress and prosperity. The doctrine of evolution gave new vitality to this belief . . . [4]

(Incidentally, later in this chapter we’ll see how this progressive view of history would dovetail with Hegel’s destructive philosophy of history.)

Two other German thinkers who had significant influence during this new era of biblical criticism were Ludwig Feuerbach and David F. Strauss. Strauss argued in his Life of Jesus Critically Examined that the supernatural elements of the gospel were myths and that Jesus was just a good teacher. Feuerbach taught in The Essence of Christianity that God is merely an expression of the mind of man. In other words, we created God out of our own desires, wants, dreams, and wishes of what we wanted him to be.

Basil Malof and Leo Tolstoy

     Basil Malof, an evangelist to Russia at the end of the 19th century, met Leo Tolstoy, the author of War and Peace and Anna Karenina, and explained the sad impact that the new German theology had on the great author, who spent his entire life struggling with his faith:

Under the influence of the writings of some German “New Theology” or modernistic writers of the Fifties and Sixties of the nineteenth century, Tolstoy had come to reject the doctrine of atonement by the sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ, inspiration of the Bible and other fundamental evangelical doctrines, and when Pastor Malof referred to the New Testament the novelist said, “My New Testament is much shorter than yours. I reject a great deal of that which you accept.” In fact, he had compiled a New Testament of his own, cutting out all the miracles and the resurrection of Christ. “By what authority?” demanded Pastor Malof. “Ah!” replied Tolstoy, “by the authority of my own reason.”[5]

     In the Gospel in Brief, Tolstoy explained that the only words in the Bible he could trust were the words of Jesus. All the other words in the Bible had a pall of doubt cast over their authenticity. This view could have come from the historical critic, David F. Strauss, and it haunted Tolstoy his entire life. He was tossed about by the influences of philosophy, experience, reason, historical criticism, and the religious ritualism found in the Russian Orthodox Church.

At times he wished he wasn’t educated and could have the simple faith of a peasant. He longed for God, and felt joy when he simply acknowledged that he was real, but then because of what he learned from liberal theologians he would go back into despair:

     Not twice or three times, but tens and hundreds of times, I reached those conditions, first of joy and animation, and then of despair and consciousness of the impossibility of living. I remember that it was in early spring: I was alone in the wood listening to its sounds. I listened and thought ever of the same thing, as I had constantly done during those last three years. I was again seeking God.

     “Very well, there is no God,” said I to myself; “there is no one who is not my imagination but a reality like my whole life. He does not exist, and no miracles can prove his existence, because the miracle would be my imagination, besides being irrational.”

     “But my perception of God, of him whom I seek,” I asked myself, “where has that perception come from?” And again, at this thought the glad waves of life rose within me. All that was around me came to life and received a meaning. But my joy did not last long. My mind continued its work.

     “The conception of God is not God,” said I to myself. “The conception is what takes place within me. The conception of God is something I can evoke or can refrain from evoking in myself. That is not what I seek. I seek that without which there can be no life.” And again, all around me and within me began to die, and again I wished to kill myself.[6]

     Karl Marx was also influenced by Strauss and Feuerbach. He rejected Christianity because of Feuerbach’s view that we created God out of our own minds. Future Marxists would use these beliefs to discredit and persecute believers in the communist world.

Richard Wurmbrand, founder of Voice of the Martyrs, says this was the precise argument used against him while he was in a communist prison. Describing attempts to brainwash him, he says that a communist official began to “attack religion. Christ, he said, was a fantasy invented by the apostles to delude slaves into hopes of freedom in paradise.”[7] This could have been Feuerbach speaking.

Pastor Malof foresaw the link between sound doctrine and a good society, and argued that spiritual rebellion ultimately led to political rebellion:

Here was noticeable the destructive results of the poison of the early German modernistic teachings upon the Russian mind which later with such terrible results spread in the theological schools and universities of Great Britain and America. The New Theology . . . like a terrible octopus of hell spread its poisonous tentacles over the thinking of . . . students and professors and preachers. Modernism in religion is the same revolutionary process as bolshevism and anarchy in politics. No more does the infallible and holy God decide, but the fallible human reason. Modernism, just as communism, is an uprising against authority.[8]

     The German church was compromised by the claims of the historical critics. The Word of God was no longer trustworthy as a source of truth. Now that the Scriptures seemed to have been discredited, there were few authoritative voices that could rise up against the false teachings of the philosophers, scientists, and politicians. The church would now succumb to Utopian optimism, arrogant philosophy, and/or any ideology that had the stamp of scientific approval.

Much of the church had fallen away—and all of this happened in the same place that Luther started the Protestant Reformation! Since there was no plumb line for truth in many of the German churches, a monstrous blob of ideology began to take shape which would find a resting place in the mind of a self-righteous young man with great skills as an orator—Adolf Hitler.


     Have you ever tried to figure out what Hitler believed? Most people know that he was an anti-Semite, but how did this view develop? Why was a whole nation willing to go along with Hitler’s madness? I don’t think Nazism can be understood without understanding the impact that the German philosophers, such as Schleiermacher, Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, and Hegel, had on the mindset of the people. One of the most influential philosophers, leading to much of the carnage of the 20th century, was Hegel.

Georg W. F. Hegel (whose philosophy had a great impact on the historical critics F. C. Bauer and Ludwig Feuerbach) would also influence both Nazi and communist ideology. Neither of these political views adopted Hegel’s philosophy in whole, but each of them was influenced by a portion of his thought. Karl Marx incorporated the views of the “Left (or Young) Hegelians,” while Adolph Hitler incorporated the “Right Hegelian” views.

Hegel’s philosophy developed at a time when there was a backlash against deism and Enlightenment philosophy. After the French Revolution (which was supported by the Enlightenment philosophers) ended in mob rule and the guillotine, people were looking for an alternative answer to the question of how to design a happy society.[9]

Many young intellects thought they might be able to come up with the answer. For example, Friedrich Schlegel thought that some sort of synthesis of thought was the answer, so he united Goethe and Fichte. Another person tried to unite Kant and Spinoza. Another idea was to unite the best of ancient (classical Greek) and modern life.

Hegel decided that he would try to unite the philosophy of Immanuel Kant with the philosophy of Johann Gottfried Herder. He chose Kant because his categorical imperative, as described in Critique of Practical Reason, argued that morality had to be separated from pleasure. It must be motivated purely by duty, and any action taken must be based on reason alone.

He also chose Herder, who developed the view that cultures were an expression of God, and that God was only able to express himself through communities, rather than through individuals. Each nation had a Volksgeist (or national spirit) that inspired its people. For example, the Athenians of Greece produced the Parthenon, democracy, and great philosophers, while the Egyptian community produced the pyramids, hieroglyphics, and mummification. Each society had a different way of expressing themselves, which Herder would claim was that community’s “expression” of God in the physical realm, and no other community could replace the other’s contribution.[10]

Therefore, Hegel’s Utopia (his ideal state) was a community made up of individuals whose moral decisions were determined through the use of reason and whose existence was merely part of an organic whole through which God was expressing himself.

Marx adopted the concept of Hegel’s ideal state, although because he rejected God, he didn’t believe in Herder’s Volksgeist. Hitler also adopted the view that an ideal state could be designed and achieved, but he accepted Herder’s idea of Volksgeist.

Hitler didn’t reject God, but his idea of God would be foreign to most of us. Perhaps it’s easier to understand this paragraph from Mein Kampf in light of an understanding of Herder’s philosophy:

Everybody who has the right kind of feeling for his country is solemnly bound, each within his own denomination to see to it that he is not constantly talking about the will of God, merely from the lips, but that in fact he fulfills the will of God and does not allow God’s handiwork to be debased. For it was by the will of God that men were made of a certain bodily shape, were given their natures and their faculties. Whoever destroys His work wages war against God’s creation and God’s will [emphasis added].[11]

     Hitler believed in Herder’s view that each culture was the expression of God on earth; therefore, if any culture was corrupted by outside influences, God’s “handiwork” was being “debased,” and the perpetrators were actually waging war against God. This, Hitler believed, was what the Jews were doing. Because they held on to their own traditions and were interjected into other nations at the Diaspora (the fall of Jerusalem in AD 70 when the Jews lost their homeland and were spread out among all the nations), they were hindering God’s ability to fully express himself through the culture of any nation where they settled. This made them destroyers of cultures—and in Hitler’s mind—destroyers of God’s will.

Hegel also promoted the idea of ubermensch—the concept that some people were types of supermen who could come on the world scene and make a heroic impact. Marx thought this man was an engineer who could look at society in the same way that a master builder looked at a blueprint. Hitler adopted this Nietzschean/Hegelian view of the superman also. He believed God was working through the “hero” to bring about progress, and that only the superman could do what was best for the German people. Although Hitler claimed to believe in democracy, dictatorship, he reasoned, was necessary for a time, because if there was a democracy, and Jews were given the right to vote, they would be a destructive and undermining force, like a parasite or a leach in the political process. Therefore, his first priority was to get rid of the Jews.

The Blend of Science, Philosophy, and Utopian Ideology in Hitler’s Worldview

     Social Darwinism (as discussed in the last chapter) would provide one scientific basis for Hitler’s racism, but it would be combined with another theory of race proposed by the French social theorist Joseph-Arthur Gobineau. His Essay on the Inequality of the Human Races claimed that there was a hierarchy of the races, each with very different qualities and characteristics, with the most highly-developed and creative races being the white races, and the most highly-developed of the white races being the Aryan race, which he called the master race.

Wagner, the German composer of the dramatic classic “Ride of the Valkyries,” and his English son-in-law H.S. Chamberlain, whose Foundations of the Nineteenth Century would build on the work of Gobineau, argued that all the great achievements of the 19th century were the work of the Aryan (now German) race.

Like Gobineau and Chamberlain, Hitler also believed that the Aryans were the source of the advanced German culture, and that the Aryan Volksgeist contributed to the great creativity of German art, music, literature, philosophy, and even religious thought.

The Hindu scriptures (theVedas) also taught that their highest castes were the descendants of the Aryans—who refused to mix their blood with racial inferiors. This would explain why Hitler adopted the Hindu swastika as his political symbol.

Because of the desire to preserve human progress, Hitler was very concerned that the German culture be kept pure. To him, the worst sin against God was that of racial interbreeding (since it destroys the Volksgeist [national spirit]). This was why his eugenics program was used to “scientifically” maintain racial purity and superiority. If the German race, whose expression of God produced the most advanced culture in the world, was corrupted by the lower races, then all the advances achieved by the Aryan race might disappear. Perhaps this paragraph in Mein Kampf (My Battle) is easier to understand now:

In this part of the world, human culture and civilization are inextricably bound up with the presence of the Aryan element. If it died out or went under, the black veil of a cultureless period would once again descend upon this globe. To anyone who views the world through nationalist [Volkisch] eyes, any breach in the existence of human civilization effected by the race which maintains it, [emphasis added] would appear in the light of the most accursed of crimes. Whoever dares lay his hand on the most noble image of God is sinning against the kindly Creator of that marvel and lending a hand in his own expulsion from paradise.[12]

Can you see the blend of social Darwinism, Herder’s expressivism, and Aryanism in the above excerpt?

In contrast to the Aryans, Hitler believed, as a result of the anti-Semitic influence of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, that the Jews were involved in an anti-Godly conspiracy to take over the world through both the press and the world’s economies. He believed the Jews were part of a diabolical plot which was responsible not only for the German loss of World War I, but also for the humiliation at Versailles (where the Germans were blamed for starting the war and were forced to make burdensome reparations to other nations). According to Hitler, both Jewish capitalists and Jewish communists were in a conspiracy to destroy the advanced German nation. As a result, Hitler was convinced that he was on a righteous mission to preserve human progress.

I think I need to mention again, that Martin Luther’s anti-Semitic polemic, On the Jews and Their Lies, although written centuries before, contributed to the hatred of the Jews. Because of the authority and honor given to Luther for his founding role in the Protestant Reformation (which started in Germany), the German people trusted his opinions, but Luther didn’t rightly divide the Word of truth, never mentioning that in Romans 11 Paul taught that God had not rejected the Jews.

Hitler was influenced by science and philosophy rather than by any biblical doctrines. His ideology was a cobbled-together hodge-podge of ideas, cut and pasted into a monstrous whole. He held certain cultural viewpoints about God, but Herder’s expressivism was a human construct, not a Christian one, and his beliefs on race had no foundation in Christian orthodoxy.[13]

Perhaps the political “genius” of Hitler was his attempt to bring about his Third Reich by appealing to the intellectual pride of the German people. His assertion that war was justified because the Germans deserved Lebensraum (living space) to further the Aryan race (since the German culture was the highest expression of God on earth) was easily blended with 19th century scientific views on racial superiority. His false beliefs would lead to World War II and, as a result, millions of people would suffer and die.

Hitler’s Utopian “ideal state” was welcomed by those who were immersed in the popular philosophical and scientific thoughts of the day. His words landed on ears that were accepting of his views because the German people had heard them in their universities, their churches, and their popular culture—and due to the historical-critical movement, there was no longer any foundation of biblical truth, so the German people were spiritually compromised and easily given over to strong delusion. Destruction and suffering followed quickly after that.

The Confessing Church opposed Nazism

     Members of the Confessing Church, led by Martin Niemoeller (founder of the Pastors’ Emergency League), Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and Karl Barth, were initially supportive of Nazism, but over time they could see the danger Hitler posed and joined together to write the Theological Declaration of Barmen: An Appeal to the Evangelical Congregations and Christians in Germany. Written in May of 1934, they began to see that Germany was heading towards disaster and tried to warn their fellow Christians to not be a part of it.

They encouraged Bible-believers and said that since the church was taking their “stand upon Scripture, then let no fear or temptation keep you from treading with us the path of faith and obedience to the Word of God.”[14]

The signers of the Barmen Declaration opposed the “German Christians of the present Reich government.” They declared that “Jesus was the way, the truth, and the life,” and they rejected “the false doctrine, as though the church could and would have to acknowledge as a source of its proclamation, apart from and besides this one Word of God, still other events and powers, figures and truths, as God’s revelation.”[15]

Theirs was a declaration of faithfulness to the Word of God rather than to the philosophies of men. They also argued that the church was not an organ of the state, that they weren’t willing to submit to anyone other than Jesus as their Lord, and that the church wasn’t subject to any prevailing ideologies, but instead had a timeless message of faith, hope, and love.

All three of the writers of the Barmen Declaration suffered as a result of their stand. Niemoeller was imprisoned in Nazi concentration camps for seven years and narrowly escaped execution. He was arrested for opposing the false church that had developed in Germany, and lamented that “forty-three out of the forty-six professors of theology on our university faculties are German Christians, teaching that Christ was an Aryan.”[16] He challenged the pastors of the Confessing Church with these words:

Either we are to have an evangelical church based on God’s Word and faith in Christ or we are to have a religious association (the new German national church) based on a new revelation which has confused the duties of church and state and which must entirely forfeit its claim to call itself the Protestant church . . . either we are followers of Christ, or we are to take the road which surrenders bit by bit the truth revealed in the Bible and ends in a substitute faith in Germany.[17]

     In one of Niemoeller’s last sermons entitled “The Salt of the Earth,” he prefaced his message by reading a long list of the names of pastors who had already been arrested. His final communion service, he said, was attended by three Hitler Youth “who came in their official capacity to spy . . . who were assuredly baptized once in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and vowed loyalty to their Savior at the confirmation altar.”[18] Niemoeller was grieved for the young men because he recognized that Nazism was a form of betrayal to Jesus.

Bonhoeffer was hanged in a concentration camp after being arrested on many allegations of Nazi resistance, the foremost of those being that he helped the Jews.

The stand against Hitler that was taken by the Confessing Church was confusing to the atheist Christopher Hitchens. It didn’t fit in with his worldview that “religion poisons everything,” so he attempted to argue that Niemoeller and Bonhoeffer were merely motivated by “conscience” to oppose the Nazis:

Many Christians gave their lives to protect their fellow creatures in this midnight of the century, but the chance that they did so on orders from any priesthood is statistically almost negligible. This is why we revere the memory of the very few believers, like Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Martin Niemoeller, who acted in accordance only with the dictates of conscience.[19]

But, in one of his last writings, Bonhoeffer reflected on what caused a person to be able to stand against evil.

Who stands fast? Only the man whose final standard is not his reason, his principles, his conscience, his freedom, or his virtue, but who is ready to sacrifice all this when he is called to obedient and responsible action in faith and in exclusive allegiance to God [emphasis added]—the responsible man, who tries to make his whole life an answer to the question and call of God. Where are these responsible people?[20]

Contrary to what Hitchens claimed, it wasn’t Bonhoeffer’s conscience that gave him the ability to stand against evil, rather it was his desire to be a responsible man in an obedient and faithful relationship with God.

During his time in a concentration camp, Bonhoeffer wrote a poem that described the struggle he was having with his identity as a prisoner. Was he the confident man everyone saw on the outside, or was he the “contemptible woebegone weakling” he felt he was on the inside? He felt taunted by doubts, but the last lines of his poem are an encouragement for any person who is uncertain about their faith during a time of intense testing:

    Who am I? They mock me, these lonely questions of mine.

Whoever I am, Thou knowest, O God, I am thine![21]

     Karl Barth, who was largely responsible for writing the Barmen Declaration, and was a professor at the University of Bonn, was exiled for not taking an oath of loyalty to Hitler. He was arrested by the Nazis in front of his classroom and it was reported that he shouted back to his students: “Exegesis! Exegesis! Exegesis!” In other words: “Sound doctrine! Sound doctrine! Sound doctrine!”

In the Barmen Declaration, the authors reminded their flock that Jesus would never leave them, nor forsake them. Therefore, they encouraged their followers with the words of Jesus:

“Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” – Luke 12:32, KJV

     The Confessing Church was able to be heroic because they were committed to something higher than the Third Reich.  They had a hope for a future kingdom of love and justice.

There were many individual heroes who acted valiantly during the Nazi era. Bible-believing Christians, Corrie ten Boom and her family, hid Jews in their home (which also served as a clock shop) and, as a result, spent time at the Ravensbruck concentration camp, where her sister died, and Corrie was only released due to an administrative error. The family home is now a museum which commemorates the courage and faithfulness of the ten Boom family.

Pastor Von Bodelschwingh, who was active in the Confesssing Church, was head of the charitable community at Bethel-Bielefield and “barred with his body the efforts of the Nazis to remove deformed children from his institution in order to exterminate them.”[22] Von Bodelschwingh has had three German commemorative stamps issued in his name because he acted heroically during the Nazi era.

Hans and Sophie Scholl, calling themselves the “White Rose,” opposed the Third Reich in Munich. Brother and sister, both in college, they were inspired by their faith to oppose Hitler’s tyranny. They distributed leaflets which read:

Everywhere and at all times of greatest trial men have appeared, prophets and saints who cherished their freedom, who preached one true God and who with His help brought the people to a reversal of their downward course. Man is free, to be sure, but without the true God he is defenseless against the principle of evil . . . We must attack evil where it is strongest, and it is strongest in the power of Hitler . . . we will not be silent. We are your bad conscience. The White Rose will not leave you in peace.[23]

     Hans and Sophie were arrested, interrogated, and beheaded for opposing Hitler, but they, along with countless other believers, remained faithful to God and His Word.

Even people who had no outward expression of faith, such as Raoul Wallenberg and Oskar Schindler, were heroic in their kindness to the Jews, but most of the religious community compromised and went along with Nazi ideology.

Nazi Germany stands as a warning to any nation to “take heed, lest you fall” (1 Cor. 10:12, KJV). Putting philosophy, science, political ideology, or any other form of human knowledge over the revelation of God will open Pandora’s Box, and after that “everything would be permitted” (as Dostoyevsky claimed in The Brothers Karamazov).[24] Gas chambers, war, dictatorship, eugenics, concentration camps, and even genocide can be justified when there is no longer a biblical anchor for the soul of a nation. (As we’ve seen over and over in history, tyrants might still use the name of Jesus, but if they develop a new kind of Christianity, which isn’t centered on sound doctrine, just like Adolph Hitler, their self-righteousness while committing horrendous cruelty will know no bounds.)

Skeptics who insist that Hitler was a Christian because he mentions Herder’s conception of God, or because liberal churches were infused with Nazi symbolism, show that they have a shallow understanding of history. Nazism was brought about by leaving the fundamentals of the faith, and those members of the faithful church who believed that the Bible was the Word of God, even if it cost them their life, formed the only internally organized opposition to Adolph Hitler and his evil Nazi regime. So, when someone makes the  claim that fundamentalist Christians are “far-right” fascists or Nazis, remember—the greatest opposition to Hitler and his Nazi regime came from those who were committed to the truth of the Scriptures.



[1] John Tosh. The Pursuit of History: Aims, Methods, and New Directions in the Study of Modern History, rev. 3rd ed. (London: Pearson Education Limited, 2002), 7.

[2] The documentary hypothesis was a theory which claimed the Torah was written, not by Moses (as the Bible claims), but by several authors over a long period of time. Eventually, according to Wellhausen, a series of editors would compile the writings, forming the biblical record. Though the theory was accepted by many scholars of the 20th century, it has now been discredited.

[3] Alistair McGrath, Historical Theology: An Introduction to the History of Christian Thought (Malden, MA: Blackwell, 2003), 232.

[4] Ibid., 233.

[5] Oswald A. Blumit and Oswald J. Smith. Sentenced to Siberia: The Story of the Ministry, Persecution, Imprisonment and God’s Wonderful Deliverance of Pastor Basil A. Malof, Russian Missionary, 6th ed. (Wheaton, IL: Mayflower Publishers, 1943), 73-74.

[6] Ibid, 233.

[7] Richard Wurmbrand, In God’s Underground, ed. Charles Foley (Greenwich, CT: Fawcett Publications, 1968), 239.

[8] Oswald A. Blumit, Sentenced to Siberia, 75.

[9] Why were the Enlightenment philosophers successful in America? For a discussion on this subject see my article: Diana Lesperance, “The Founding of America: Secular or Christian?” Feb. 2, 2016. The Faithful Church. Accessed July 23, 2019.

[10] For a further understanding of Hegel’s philosophy of history, including a discussion on the “dialectic” or the “spiral view of history” see: Diana Lesperance, “Hegel’s Philosophy of History,” March 21, 2014, The Faithful Church. Accessed Sept. 26, 2019.

[11] Adolph Hitler, Mein Kampf , trans. James Murphy Project Gutenberg, Australia, Accessed July 25, 2019.

[12] Adolph Hitler, Mein Kampf, trans. James Murphy. Project Gutenberg, Australia. Accessed July 25, 2019.

[13] According to Peter Calvocoressi (a British intelligence officer during World War II who worked to decrypt German Enigma messages—a task  that was portrayed in the 2014 movie The Imitation Game) and Guy Wint, authors of Total War: Causes and Courses of the Second World War (New York: Penguin Books, 1972), p. 7, Hitler, who “was employed in the Press and News Section of the army headquarters in Munich, was appointed a Bildungsoffizier (a cultural instructor or education officer).”

[14] Arthur C. Cochrane, “The Theological Declaration of Barmen,” The Church’s Confession Under Hitler (Philadelphia: Westminster Press, 1962), 237-242.

[15] Ibid.

[16] Basil Miller, Martin Niemoeller: Hero of the Concentration Camp, 3rd ed. (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1943), 127.

[17] Ibid., 122.

[18] Ibid., p.132.

[19] Hitchens, God Is Not Great, 241.

[20] Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Letters and Papers from Prison (New York: Touchstone, 1977), 4-5.

[21] Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship, rev. ed. (New York: MacMillan, 1963), 20.

[22] Stewart Winfield Herman. Report from Christian Europe (New York: Friendship Press, 1953), 54.

[23] Robert Ellsberg, All Saints: Daily Reflections on Saints, Prophets, and Witnesses For Our Time (New York: Crossroad Publishing, 2005), 88.

[24] Fyodor Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov, trans. Constance Garnett (New York: Lowell Press, 2009), 665. Project Gutenberg. Accessed Oct. 7, 2019.



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