Hitler a Christian?

(Isaiah J. Armstrong) #1

I found this article after i tried to do my own research afterI realized many atheists claimed that Hitler was a devoted Christian:

Obviously Hitler did not live the life as one whose life is in submission to Christ, but can it be proven historically that Hitler was not a christian?

(SeanO) #2

@O_wretched_man Richard Weikart has a book that attempts to answer this question. Below are a few article excerpts and link to the book. Weikart’s basic premise is that while Hitler used Christianity for political purposes, he despised both Paul’s teaching and the religion of the ordinary man. He worshiped nature and believed the law’s of nature, the strong conquering the weak, were fundamental.

The book delves into Hitler’s dependence on a certain subset of Nietzsche’s teachings and clarifies that it would not be entirely accurate to call him atheist either. It also gives anecdotal evidence of his hatred for true Christianity.

Even though he tried to palm himself off as a Christian when it served his political purposes, none of his friends and comrades considered him one. Even though he never officially left the Catholic Church, Schroeder claimed he promised to withdraw from the church immediately after the war to symbolize the dawn of a new historical era.125 All of Hitler’s close associates agreed with Schroeder, testifying that he was antagonistic toward Christianity. He admired the whip-wielding Jesus, whom he considered a fellow Aryan warrior fighting against the allegedly infernal Jews, but he had utter contempt for the Jesus who told His followers to love their enemies and turn the other cheek.

He also did not believe that Jesus’s death had any significance other than showing the perfidy of the Jews, nor did he believe in Jesus’s resurrection. In private conversations and monologues he railed at Christianity because it had followed the lead of that insidious Jewish rabbi Paul. Despite Hitler’s disingenuous public statements, and despite his esteem for (his anti-Semitic version of) Jesus, it is abundantly clear that Hitler did not consider himself a Christian.

(Isaiah J. Armstrong) #3

If all of this proof is out there suggesting that Hitler was not a Christian, than why does the article I gave try to twist the Gospel of John into some kind of anti-semitic work that influenced the concentration camps? If that was the only article I read on the subject, I must say I’d have been convinced, too. Why twist the truth? The author quotes John 8:44 to support his thesis while ignoring John 13:34-35:

34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

Thanks for the articles and the book suggestion @SeanO

(SeanO) #4

@O_wretched_man Indeed. It’s very difficult to say what is motivating any given individual to malign the Bible. I think each person has different motivations. Some people may be angry at God, others at Christians, others may just enjoy provoking people or causing arguments - and still others may genuinely believe that because the Bible has been misused / misinterpreted in the past it is dangerous.

Clearly you are correct that the Gospels are not anti-semitic, but people who are anti-semitic have misused the Bible. This misuse, unfortunately, can serve as an excuse for those opposed to Christ to malign the Bible or for well intentioned, though uninformed, people to make false accusations.

(Isaiah J. Armstrong) #5

@SeanO But you can confidently (and quite unfortunately) say that Hitler did not misuse or misinterpret Nietzsche’s writings when he presented them to Stalin and Mussolini about the "superman’ race.

I guess that the article I shared proves that you need to be sure that your sources are correct and trustworthy before you start searching Google for any kind of article to support your own thesis.

(SeanO) #6

@O_wretched_man Indeed, finding good sources is very important. In a way, you have to check the sources for your sources :slight_smile: That’s why once you find a reliable resource it’s great to make a note of it. And even, then for each article you need to do a common sense check / sources check. No one is perfect.

(Patrick Prabhakar) #7

@O_wretched_man Like you’ve rightly pointed out, the words of Christ (John 13:34-35) does flaunt the truth about who a genuine CHRISTian is. Jesus emphasized on loving our neighbor and when asked as to who are we to consider our neighbors, Jesus shared a parable (Luke 10:25-37) in a way reiterating that we ought to even bear love in our hearts for our enemies (Luke 6:27-36) while exercising wisdom and caution (Matthew 10:16).

There are people who try to twist scriptures and take bible verses out of context and manipulate it to serve their own understanding.

Psalm 56:5 NIV [boldface mine]
All day long they twist my words; all their schemes are for my ruin.

2 Peter 3:16 NIV [boldface mine]
He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.

As for us we need to study to rightly understand the bible, knowing ‘God is love’ (1 John 4:8).

2 Timothy 2:15 KJV
Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

The below resources could further your study: