By: To: Fredric Rice Re: Re: Devils and Hell etc. From nches

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By: To: Fredric Rice Re: Re: Devils and Hell etc. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ From ncheshire!UBVM.CC.BUFFALO.EDU:owner-sechum-l@UBVM.CC.BUFFALO.EDU! From: To: Multiple recipients of list SECHUM-L Date: Wed, 26 Oct 1994 10:05:12 -0400 From: IN%"" 25-OCT-1994 19:16:41.24 To: IN%"" CC: Subj: RE: Devils and Hell etc. "" on 24-OCT-1994 wrote: > > Hitler's family was nominally Roman Catholic, and Stalin was at one time >an Orthodox Church seminarian...and so what? These guys were devout >atheists, of that I can assure you. Their ideologies found moral absolutes Hitler a devout atheist? It's generous of you to offer your assurance, but please also include evidence. Meanwhile, consider just a sampling of the abundant evidence mitigating against your claim: Hitler hardly seemed atheistic when he said: "Today, I believe that I am acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator: by defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting for the work of the Lord" (speech, Reichstag, 1936). Or: "Secular schools can never be tolerated because such a school has no religious instruction and a general moral instruction without a religious foundation is built on air; consequently, all character training and religion must be derived from faith. . . . We need a believing people." (To Bishop Berning, cited in Free Inquiry, Summer 1985, p. 7a.) If Hitler was a devout atheist, why did Nazis spurn atheism? "They [Nazis] fiercely rejected accusations that they were atheists. Himmler declared that atheism would not be tolerated in the ranks of the SS" (Paul Johnson's "A History of Christianity," p. 486). If Hitler was a devout atheist, why did Christian leaders court him? In 1933 two bishops met for over an hour with Hitler. In his notes of that meeting, Bishop Berning happily remarked, "because of [Nazism] Christianity was being promoted, the level of morality raised, and the struggle against bolshevism and atheism carried on with energy and success." (Catholic theologian Uta Ranke-Heinemann, "Eunuchs for the Kingdom of Heaven," p. 330.) "In January 1934 Hitler saw twelve Evangelical leaders, and after this meeting . . . they pledged 'the leaders of the German Evangelical Church unanimously affirm their unconditional loyalty to the Third Reich and its leader.'" (Johnson, p. 488). "In April 1939, Protestants and Catholics rang their bells for Hitler's birthday, and Cardinal Bertram, the Catholic primate, sent him a greetings-telegram" (ibid., p. 489). Martin Luther was revered by Nazis, who often cited his anti- Jewish venom. You may recall that Luther called for strong civil measures against Jews. He called for destroying their homes and synagogues, and forcing them to live under one roof or in a stable. Their prayer books should be taken away, rabbis forbidden to teach, and killed if they violate that prohibition. No travel. They should be deprived of their money; forced to do hard labor. If Christians should still feel threatened after all that, Jews should be expelled from the land. He even said, "We are at fault in not slaying them." Luther's ideas are echoed in Hitler's "Mein Kampf," wherein he is named one of the great heroes of the German people. The editor of the American translation of Luther's works, a Lutheran, comments: "It is impossible to publish Luther's treatise today . . . without noting how similar to his proposals were the actions of the National Socialist regime in Germany in the 1930's and 1940's." The original edition of Luther's "On the Jews and Their Lies" was exhibited in a special glass case at party rallies in Nuremberg. The Nazis planned various events, including their first large- scale pogrom against the Jews, in honor of the anniversary of Luther's birthdays. BTW, in the 1939 German census, only 1.5% of the population identified themselves as "unbelievers." Also, Hitler's Germany required a lengthy prayer in all secondary schools to "Almighty God, dear heavenly Father." Rick Shumaker -- The destroyer of weeds, thistles and thorns, is a benefactor whether he soweth grain or not--R.G. Ingersoll.


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