I ended up watching this with my father last night out of the blue. We turned it on out of boredom and didn’t know what to expect:
The Nazi Gospels
Interesting that there’s more than one copy of the video on Youtube.
It’s certainly not a perfect documentary - my largest criticisms are with how they use the annoying ‘cliffhanger’ dramatic narration before commercials, and even moreso how they repeatedly emphasize the evilness and paganism of Nazi beliefs, presumably to appeal to a fairly conservative Christian audience.
But, there are some pretty good ideas nevertheless. The basic premise is that Nazism was not a political movement so much as it was a religious cult, and most of the program goes into more detail on the specific beliefs and rituals. I had heard of the Nazis as being a cult in passing maybe once or twice, but never have I seen it broken down in detail.
This also reminds me of a common internet refrain involving Hitler’s religious beliefs: that Christians often argue that Hitler was an atheist, and atheists argue tha Hitler was a Catholic. It looks to be likely that both are wrong: Hitler was a Nazi, and was basically the god-figure of the cult. The Nazi-Pope, in a sense. As I know that some people on here do get into religious arguments that can turn in this direction, this is probably something worth checking out, if for no other reason, to get Hitler’s religious affiliations correct, but also because there is some fairly interesting (if overly dramatized) history in the program.
Whatever he was or believed or thought all we have to go on is what he said, and time after time he said he was a believing Christian.
Here are a few quotes
- Adolf Hitler, quoted in: The Speeches of Adolf Hitler, 1922-1939, Vol. 1 (London, Oxford University Press, 1942), pg. 871-872
“The national government will maintain and defend the foundations on which the power of our nation rests. It will offer strong protection to Christianity as the very basis of our collective morality. Today Christians stand at the head of our country.We want to fill our culture again with the Christian spirit. We want to burn out all the
recent immoral developments in literature, in the theatre, and in the press—in short, we want to burn out the poison of immorality which has entered into our whole life and culture as a result of liberal excess during the past few years.”
“My feelings as a Christian points me to my Lord and Savior as a fighter. It points me to the man who once in loneliness, surrounded by a few followers, recognized these Jews for what they were and summoned men to fight against them and who, God’s truth! was greatest not as a sufferer but as a fighter. In boundless love as a Christian and as a man I read through the passage which tells us how the Lord at last rose in His might and seized the scourge to drive out of the Temple the brood of vipers and adders. How terrific was His fight for the world against the Jewish poison. To-day, after two thousand years, with deepest emotion I recognize more profoundly than ever before the fact that it was for this that He had to shed His blood upon the Cross. As a Christian I have no duty to allow myself to be cheated, but I have the duty to be a fighter for truth and justice… And if there is anything which could demonstrate that we are acting rightly it is the distress that daily grows. For as a Christian I have also a duty to my own people.
-Adolf Hitler, in a speech on 12 April 1922 (Norman H. Baynes, ed. The Speeches of Adolf Hitler, April 1922-August 1939, Vol. 1 of 2, pp. 19-20, Oxford University Press, 1942)
Even today I am not ashamed to say that, overpowered by stormy enthusiasm, I fell down on my knees and thanked Heaven from an overflowing heart for granting me the good fortune of being permitted to live at this time.
-Adolf Hitler (Mein
Hitler spoke against atheism:
Hitler often associated atheism with Bolshevism, Communism, and Jewish materialism. Hitler stated in a speech to the people of Stuttgart on February 15, 1933: “Today they say that Christianity is in danger, that the Catholic faith is threatened. My reply to them is: for the time being, Christians and not international atheists are now standing at Germany’s fore. I am not merely talking about Christianity; I confess that I will never ally myself with the parties which aim to destroy Christianity. Fourteen years they have gone arm in arm with atheism. At no time was greater damage ever done to Christianity than in those years when the Christian parties ruled side by side with those who denied the very existence of God. Germany’s entire cultural life was shattered and contaminated in this period. It shall be our task to burn out these manifestations of degeneracy in literature, theater, schools, and the press—that is, in our entire culture—and to eliminate the poison which has been permeating every facet of our lives for these past fourteen years.”[
In a radio address October 14, 1933 Hitler stated, “For eight months we have been waging a heroic battle against the Communist threat to our Volk, the decomposition of our culture, the subversion of our art, and the poisoning of our public morality. We have put an end to denial of God and abuse of religion. We owe Providence humble gratitude for not allowing us to lose our battle against the misery of unemployment and for the salvation of the German peasant.”
In a speech delivered in Berlin, October 24, 1933, Hitler stated: “We were convinced that the people needs and requires this faith. We have therefore undertaken the fight against the atheistic movement, and that not merely with a few theoretical declarations: we have stamped it out.”
Can you produce one quote from Hitler that shows he identified himself as an atheist? Can you produce one they shows he was not a believer in Christianity?