German Evangelical Church Criticizes Government Tolerating or Engage in Anti-Christian Actions Hot

German Evangelical Church Criticizes Government Tolerating or Engage in Anti-Christian Actions

Ludwig Müller

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The German Evangelical Church has a manifesto addressed to "Evangelical Christianity and to the Authorities in Germany" read from all the pulpits of Protestant churches in Nazi Germany.

Signed by Superintendant Koch for the Brotherhood Council for the Confessional Synod and by the Rev. Ludwig Müller for the Provisional Government of the German Evangelical Church, it forcefully criticizes German government officials for tolerating or participating in anti-Christian activities.

Composed and held in secret until the last minute, it says in part:

"The German people is facing a decision of the greatest historical importance. The question is whether the Christian faith is to retain its right to exist in Germany or not. Today the gospel of Jesus Christ is being attacked here systematically with unequaled violence.

This is being done not only by those who reject any belief in God, but also by those who do not wish to deny God, but think they can reject the revelations of Jesus Christ. Powers of the State and of the party are being used against the gospel of Jesus Christ and against those who profess it. ...

The Evangelical Church knows that it is bound to our people and its authorities by the word of God and has its duties toward them. On every Sunday divine aid is asked for the Führer and the Fatherland in the Evangelical Church services.

Three years ago millions of Evangelical Germans welcomed the new beginning in the life of our people with warm hearts. They did so with all the more joy because the government of the nation had said in its first proclamation of Feb. 1, 1933, that it would "firmly protect Christianity as the basis of our whole moral system."

It is absolutely fantastic for Evangelical Christians to think that official organs in the German Fatherland turn against the gospel of Jesus Christ. But it is happening, nevertheless. ...

The truth of the gospel is being attacked most openly, even by leading men of the State. We draw attention to the speech of National Director Dr. Ley [Dr. Robert Ley, head of the German Labor Front] on May 1, 1936, which was broadcast over the air and published in the whole German press. ...

When the party program mentions "positive Christianity" it really does not mean Christianity, but just a positive religious feeling in general. It was not wished to say this openly right at once, because the doctor cannot tell the whole truth to a sick man. ...

We are ready to sacrifice our property and our lifeblood in the interest of the State and of our German people, but we do not want to be told before the throne of God's judgment: "When the gospel of Jesus was being attacked in the German lands, you re-mained silent and turned your children over to a strange spirit without resistance." ...

Protection for Christianity cannot mean that the gospel must be protected by human power. The gospel enjoys a higher protection! But it must mean that disparagements of the gospel be kept aloof from the public life of the German people and that the faith to which the church bears witness be not systematically destroyed In our young folk. This we demand, in the name of the Living God, from all those holding office in Germany."

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