A review of: The Swastika against the Cross: The Nazi War on Christianity by Bruce Walker
Outskirts Press, Parker, CO, 2009
Many anti-Christians turn to the Nazis for an example of the sort of evil that can be committed in the name of Christ. The myth that the Nazis were Christian is so common that many Christians cannot adequately answer it. If the Nazis had been Christian in name, all this would have proved is that not all who claim to act in Christ’s name are consistent with His teachings. But far from being Christians, the Nazis were opposed to Christianity and sought to stamp it out. In less than 100 pages, Bruce Walker, in The Swastika Against the Cross, sets out to document the Nazi’s opposition to Christianity using sources that were mainly written before and during the Second World War. As Walker points out, “The authors of these books had no idea how history would unfold; they did not know that the world would be plunged into a global war or that six million Jews would be exterminated in horrific fashion” (Introduction).
Was pre-Nazi Germany Christian?
In the era leading up to Nazi Germany, Germany and the rest of Europe were characterized by growing hostility to Christianity. Instead, Europe was enamored with Darwinism and Communism: “Karl Marx and Charles Darwin captured the hearts and minds of men. … God was unnecessary; man was self-made, the survival of the fittest was the preferred method of improving the human race provided by the only god that still existed—nature” (p. 2).
Germany, more than any other country, embraced both naturalism, fueled by Marxism and Darwinism, and the hatred of Christianity and Judaism that the new philosophies inspired. In fact, the same people wrote anti-Semitic propaganda were generally very anti-Christian as well. Over 100,000 Germans formally abandoned their professed faith between 1908 and 1914. More than that many left Christianity every year after World War I, and many who remained Christian did so only in name (pp. 4–6). By the time Hitler came to power, Christianity was barely present in Germany as a cultural force, much less a dominant or influential power….
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