By Brannon S. Howse
In Hitler’s Cross, Erwin Lutzer explains how the false German church literally lowered the cross of Christ and raised the national flag over it:
[quote] Hitler, of course, did not think Germany had room for two gods. Initially content with two crosses hung in the churches; in the end he insisted there be only one. Neither the cross of Christ nor the swastika could tolerate dual allegiance. A choice would have to be made: Those who chose the Cross would have to walk a lonely road in one direction; those who chose the swastika would walk in step with the exuberant crowd. Those who chose the swastika participated in the fate of its leader; those who chose the cross of Christ discovered that “it is the power of God for salvation.” (Romans 1:16). [end quote]
Please note that it was not enough that the swastika be alongside the cross; it had to completely replace it. The Bible could not be laid alongside of Mein Kampf, but the Nazi bible had to be on the altar by itself. In short, the God of heaven had to be removed to make way for the god of national socialism.
Hitler chose his friend Alfred Rosenberg to help create the National Reich Church, and, as author Eric Metaxas documents, Rosenberg “was one of the Nazi leaders most active in creating this ‘new religion’…. Rosenberg was an ‘outspoken pagan’ who, during the war, developed a thirty-point program for the ‘National Reich Church’.” Some of the goals in Rosenberg’s thirty-point plan included:
13. The National Church demands immediate cessation of the publishing and dissemination of the Bible in Germany.
14. The National Church declares that to it, and therefore to the German nation, it has been decided that the Fuehrer’s Mein Kampf is the greatest of all documents. It…not only contains the greatest but it embodies the purest and truest ethics for the present and future life of our nation.
18. The National Church will clear away from its altars all crucifixes, Bibles and pictures of saints.
19. On the altars there must be nothing but Mein Kampf (to the German nation and therefore to God the most sacred book) and to the left of the altar a sword.
30. On the day of its foundation, the Christian Cross must be removed from all churches, cathedrals and chapels…and it must be superseded by the only unconquerable symbol, the swastika.
Hitler outlawed the cross and replaced it with the swastika. Today many churches, Christian colleges, and universities have likewise removed the cross from their buildings without so much as a government order, just so they can be more “seeker sensitive.” Yet, 1 Corinthians 1:18 tells us that “the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” My friend the late Dr. Ron Carlson told me of a church in the Twin Cities that invited a Muslim and a Hindu for an “interfaith” discussion. To keep from offending the Muslim and the Hindu, the hosts removed the cross from the front of the church.
Today, churches willingly lower the cross not only in and on their buildings, but most pastors no longer preach the cross and the crucified and risen Lord. Instead, they have developed ear-tickling to a fine art with messages on how to improve your finances, sex life, business, and relationships. The biblical message of dying to self and picking up the cross of Christ has been replaced with self-esteem, self-image, self-love, and self-help messages. Pastors become life coaches instead of proclaimers of the Gospel, which includes explaining man’s depravity and total worthlessness apart from Jesus Christ.
In a prescient observation, Erwin Lutzer expands on the significance of German churches’ replacing the cross with the swastika and the Bible with Mein Kampf:
[quote] The majority of the people, including the professing Christians, no longer believed that Christianity was worth suffering for, much less dying for. They were willing to substitute Mein Kampf for the Bible in exchange for jobs and the greater glory of Germany. Yet those who saved their lives lost them, and those who lost their lives saved them. [end quote]
I believe most “evangelical Christians” and certainly the New Religious Right have raised the flag above the cross and united with those who are hostile to the cross, the Word of God, and the Gospel in order to accomplish their political and economic goals. In fact, most of evangelicalism hide the true Gospel of the cross in embarrassment. Most dare not use the words “sin,” “repentance,” “depravity,” “hell,” “atonement,” or the words of Jesus in Luke 14 to “hate…his own life,” “bear his cross,” “forsake all that he has,” and thus, words describing the need to “die to self” and “hate your sin” are rarely if ever used or defined biblically.
Copyright 2015 ©Brannon Howse. This content is for Situation Room members and is not to be duplicated in any form or uploaded to other websites without the express written permission of Brannon Howse or his legally authorized representative.