While Christianity wasn’t the sole catalyst for the Holocaust, there is no doubt in my mind that Christianity set the stage for the Holocaust to happen to the extent that the Holocaust couldn’t have happened without Christianity.
Christianity financially and emotionally oppressed Germans leading up to WWII.
Churches exploited German Christians financially by requiring tithes, encouraging donations, selling indulgences and charging fees for breaking moral laws. This siphoned off much needed income from the poor and gave it to the aristocracy of the Christian Theocracy. Not only did this hurt the poor’s chances of living well in the present, but that lost income couldn’t be saved, invested or passed on to future generations. So over the course of several generations, the consequences of lost income compounded.
The church mentally abused the German populace by forbidding behavior that deviated from Church doctrine. People were put in the stocks for gossiping. People were ostracized for adultery. People were killed for witchcraft. If you go to any medieval torture museum in Germany today, most of the instruments of misery there were used by the state to enforce (their interpretation) of Biblical morality. Medieval Germany under Christian rule was like Saudi Arabia is today under Islamic rule. Everyone was forced to walk the line, and punishment for deviation was harsh.
Christianity was culturally oppressive to the German Jews, but Christian financial laws were favorable to the Jews.
In the eyes of the Christian church, Jews were heretics and Jesus-killers. Since they rejected the teachings of salvation they were destined for Hell fire, and they deserved it. As a result, the good Christians ostracized them and forced them to form tight-nit, insular communities with other Jews.
Over time the Jewish community established strong familial and ethnic bonds. This meant well-established connections between businesses. This meant businesses could grow easily and have a safety net of support if the business fell on hard times. But that was unlikely to happen anyway because the Jews had spent generations being pushed around by Christians. They knew there were hard times in the past and there’d be hard times in the future. This taught the Jews to save their money for the hard times to come.
Christianity practically handed the banking industry to the Jewish community in Medieval Europe. The Bible clearly forbid usury (aka charging interest on a loan). Since Christians couldn’t charge interest they had no incentive to open banks. People still need loans though. So the Jews stepped in and filled the need (even though, technically, they weren’t supposed to charge interest either). Once the Jews had their hand in the financial sector, then money beget money, and the income gap between Jews and Christians widened (with the Jews on top).
Hitler hijacked German Christians’ existing prejudice towards Jews.
Your average Christians living in Germany saw that they were the “have-nots” and the Jews were the “haves,” but they didn’t understand why. They just thought Jews were Jesus-killing, heretic, big-nose, stingy thieves… because that’s how the church had always taught Christians to see the Jews. Anti-Jew riots occurred in Germany well before World War II because Christianity had already established a well defined environment for distrust, resentment and hate.
After World War I, life in Germany was even more destitute for poor Christians than ever. Of course, the church didn’t open it coffers and give back all the money it had been taking from the poor for generations. So the masses stayed poor and disgruntled.
That’s when Hitler stepped in and said, “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.”
Hitler merely played on the prejudices created by Christianity to blame the problems (that were largely created by Christianity) on the Jews, who were living comfortable lives (which happened out of response to Christian oppression).Thus, Christianity played a central and vital role in setting the stage for the Holocaust.
However you felt about this post, you’ll probably feel the same way about these:
The Bible is mythology
- A short summary of the Bible
- 10 scriptures that reveal Christianity is mythology
- 3 signs Christianity is mythology
- Disproving the Bible with sex
- A more realistic take on the 10 commandments
- Prophets and cognitive dissonance
- What is sin?
- Is God a lover or a fighter?
- 15 mind control techniques both churches and cults use
- Religion 101 final exam
- Questions Christians have to struggle with that non-believers can answer in three words
Christianity is bad for you and society
- How Christianity was largely responsible for The Holocaust
- 11 ways Christianity ruins society
- Why you should not respect religious beliefs
- 10 reasons the Bible will drive you insane
- 7 ways the Bible will make you an immoral person
- You can achieve the benefits of Christianity without believing in mythology
- Things Christians have to worry about the nonbelievers don’t
- The power of prayer
Churches and Christian Culture
- Christian billboards I wish Atheists would make
- 20 reasons I’m extremely hesitant to debate Christians
- 10 signs you should stop pretending to be a Christian
- Christians, you believe in science.
- It’s time to stop mutilating baby boys’ genitals
- 10 ways to be a better Christian witness on the internet
- Traditional Christian values are neither Christian or traditional
- It’s time to stop celebrating Easter
- It’s time to stop celebrating Christmas
- Ode to Chic-Fil-A’s Inequality Appreciation Day