Tearing Down the Temple

Reactions to reading the book of Romans

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Monday, August 15, 2005

Romans 1:25—Exchanging the truth of God for a lie

The beloved pastor of our church is of German extraction, as are many Lutherans in the US. For the second time this year, he has felt it necessary to mention in passing, during his sermon, that he holds his head in shame for the Nazi Reich that ended sixty years ago. It has occurred to me, as an Irishman by extraction, to wonder what stuff I should be hanging my head in shame about. Plenty, no doubt.

There's no use asking ourselves what went wrong in Germany to bring about Nazism and the Holocaust. We won’t get the answer we are looking for. What we would like to hear is that there was some cultural or societal deficiency that enabled a nation of Christian extraction to be overcome by the paganism of Hitler and Nazism. We would like to know so that we can prevent its recurrence—to snuff it out before it can ignite.

But there’s no use asking what went wrong, because what went wrong is what always goes wrong when people “exchange the truth of God for a lie.” God abandons them to their vices. We would like to know that “it can’t happen here.” But it has happened here, many times. It is happening right now. It may not be Nazism. But a foul doctrine of anti-life and anti-Christ always emerges and takes hold of the people when they turn their backs on God’s truth.

It is damnation. Sometimes it is simply individual damnation, as with the condemned among the materialists and the existentialists. Sometimes it is wide-scale damnation, as with the great slaughter of souls taking place among our drug-cultured, tattooed youth today. Sometimes it is super, colossal damnation, as with the Nazi Reich. But in the end, it is damnation, just the same.

There’s no use crowing about the hell we’ve avoided if we are heading just as fast towards another one. There is only one cure—Christ. He is the way—the only way—we can know God. All the rest simply delays (or even speeds) the inevitable.

3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

interesting & thought provoking blog, no surprise since its associated to one of the best Christian email lists, hope you find time & material to keep it up - God bless your internet ministry

6:40 AM  
Blogger Robert McAnally Adams said...

Thank you. I hope that there will be some conversations about these matters I am trying to address.

7:41 PM  
Blogger Greg H said...

It's a good idea to keep in mind that the Nazi mindset was based on evolution, rather than creation. It had this in common with the USSR and virtually every other oppressive regime in history.

1:23 AM  

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