At the Cross all narcissism ends; all attempts to impress God cease, and optimism about mankind’s ability to build a better world on its own vanishes.
The cross of Christ and the cross of Hitler are two opposing beliefs that lead to World War II and the destruction of a people. Lutzer has written several books on Hitler and I am glad he has. Can history repeat itself? A resounding yes and it is because we are looking for a Savior. Just not the right one. The account also includes God’s providence in what Hitler did. I believe that God foreshadows his plan of redemption for mankind. Was Hitler sent by God? No, however, it was the promise of salvation from Hitler that put him in that time of history. The fall of WWI, the economy, and the political rhetoric we even hear today. One of the things I found fascinating was the time Hitler was put into power or his rise he was 30 years of age. He also was very involved in the occult (Satanism and the like). He believed that to take away a man’s conscience, that man would do anything such as lead many to death camps. What we can learn from Hitler is the depravity of us all. Because of WWII and the destruction of the Jews, would we have had the birth of Israel as a nation?
The question arises “Where was the church”? Lutzer goes into deep account of how Hitler took over the church and how easy it is to do that in the age of cheap grace…. The church was weak because it misunderstood grace. Cheap grace is the deadly enemy of our church. We are fighting today for costly grace. Cheap grace means grace sold the market like cheapjack wares. The sacraments, the forgivness of sin, and the consolations of religion are thrown away at cut prices…In such a Chruch the world finds a cheap cover for its sins; no contrition is required, still less any real desire to be deliverd from sin… Cheap grace means the justification of sin without the justification of the sinner…It is the grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate…. It is Bonhoeffer’s testimony of standing up to Hitler and what he believed about the Gospel.
I was convicted with these quotes…
If you fall down in a land of peace, how will you do in the thicket of Jordan.
If we can’t be loyal to Christ in small decisions, how can we expect to be loyal when our faith might cost us something very precious?
Suffering purifies the church; it makes important distinctions among men. ..The church that preaches a Christ who is worth dying for has the best chance of experiencing persecution but also the best chance of survival.
History does repeat itself even at our best efforts. Because of that, this book becomes an important read to grasp what means to follow Christ.
A Special Thank You to Moody Publishing and Netgalley for the ARC and the opportunity to post an honest review