The Third Reich Captures The Church—Can It Happen Again?Erwin W. Lutzer | October 23, 1994
Selected highlights from this sermon
Hitler’s initial overtures toward the church of Germany didn’t seem that threatening so the church obeyed him and ended up swallowing Hitler’s lies. Then the laws came, and pastors started going to prison. Those who spoke against the Reich were persecuted.
As a whole, the church capitulated, there were very few resisters. Even when all the powers of the state and laws were brought against the church, some trusted in the power of the Gospel.
With a forest of swastika flags around the altar in Magneburg, Germany in the cathedral, the dean of the cathedral declared in 1933, “Whoever reviles this symbol of ours is reviling our Germany. The swastika flags around the altar radiate hope, hope that the day is about to dawn.”
Another German pastor said, “In the pitch black night of church history Hitler became, as it were, the wonderful transparency for our times, the window of our age through which light fell on the history of Christianity. Through him we were able to see the Savior in the history of the Germans. Christ came to us through Adolf Hitler.”
As many of you know, this is the fourth in a series of messages that I am doing on the Third Reich, looking at the Third Reich through the lens of Scripture. And I need to tell you that I wrestled with the question as to whether or not I should preach this series of messages. And I am sure that when you looked at the bulletin you wrestled with it too. It’s been interesting to hear the comments. Some people said that they looked at it and wondered what in the world I was up to, and why it would be. They thought that I would leave preaching the Word to preach history.
Well, let me tell you finally why I decided to preach this series of messages and how it came about. This past summer I had the privilege of being in Berlin. Forgive me, but I love these German cities like Berlin and Munich because of their history, and when I was there, I was in a museum dedicated to the resistance of those who opposed Hitler. As I looked at the walls, I noticed pictures of Catholic and Protestant ministers, not only giving the Nazi salute, but I also saw swastikas adorning the altars and banners in churches, and right in the middle of every one of those swastikas was the cross of Jesus Christ.
And so it was that within Hitler’s broken cross there was the cross of our crucified Redeemer. And as I stood there looking at those pictures, I began to ask myself the question, “How could this happen? How could it happen that a church could so buy into a culture and a political philosophy that it no longer would be able to critique that philosophy, but would simply become a part of Hitler’s political agenda?” And I said to myself, “There are lessons here that should be taken as a warning to the Christian church.”
And so I don’t normally preach this kind of a series of messages, but if you’ve been here the last three times, you know that always we try to look at these events through the lens of Scripture, and even the lens of prophecy. And today’s message is on how Hitler captured the church, and what we can learn from that process.
How would I describe the Christian church in Germany when Hitler rose to power? Three vivid descriptions come immediately to mind. The first is the church was very nationalistic. Now it’s not possible for me to give you a history of Germany, though in a couple of weeks when Roy Schwartz and I are together, I’m going to give you a ten-minute lecture on the First Reich and the Second Reich because most people don’t know why Hitler’s Germany was the Third Reich.
Well, during those periods of time the church was tied in to politics in a very, very direct way. In fact, during the great Prussian kings, and Prussia became a part of Germany, during the day of the Prussian kings the Prussian king was basically the head of the church. I’ve been to the Kaiser Wilhelm Church in Berlin, the Memorial Church, and as you look at the various paintings and the frescos that are there, you’ll notice that there is the Kaiser, known as Caesar. That’s the German word for Caesar. There’s Kaiser Wilhelm, but there is Christ, too, and it looks like you’re not sure exactly to whom you should be loyal. “Should I be loyal to Caesar, or should I be loyal to Christ?” And the answer of Germany is to be loyal to Caesar is to be loyal to Christ.
Germany was so nationalistic that during the First World War, when troops would die on the battlefield, it was generally believed that they died as martyrs for Jesus Christ. The church was fully absorbed with the culture of Germany, and there were lectures and books written on how to synthesize, that is to say how to bring together, German culture and Christianity, and make them one to have a special Christianity just for Germany and for its Hitler.
Would I say also that the churches, by and large, were also opposed to the Jews? That was last week’s message. Not only that, but you find that the churches were opposed to democracy. Germany began to flirt with democracy for the first time in 1918, after World War I. The Weimar Republic began, and I am told by someone that both Catholics and Protestants were strongly opposed to democracy, believing that only the monarchy could be strong. It’s like one woman who lived through that period told me, “Hitler was able to do what no democracy could do. Democracy is so slow. You’ve got this committee, and that committee, and the Weimar Republic was split with all these different political factions. What we needed was a strong leader to lead us out of the abyss.” In fact, a Catholic told me that some priests would not hear the confessions of people unless they were opposed to democracy and in favor of restoration of the German monarchy. Now, I might say that the Catholic church ultimately did better than the Protestants in resisting Hitler because they were more unified than the fragmented Protestants. But the churches were thoroughly politicized.
A second thing about the church was that by and large they were liberal in theology. This is heartbreaking, but you know that in American universities and seminaries, all the liberal theories that undercut the integrity of Scripture, almost all of them were hatched in Germany. It was the Germans who did it. Feuerbach, in the middle of the nineteenth century, wrote a book on the essence of Christianity in which he basically said that Christianity is really not the deity of Christ, but Christ came to Earth to show that all of us are really divine and all statements in the Bible that refer to God should actually be referred to man.
Nietzsche, who died in 1900, proclaimed the death of God. He said, regarding God, “We have killed Him.” But then he also asked the question, “Who will wipe the blood from our hands?” And Nietzsche predicted, actually, that in the twentieth century there would be a blood bath as the world had never seen. He didn’t live to see it but my, how right he was. He talked of superman, and Hitler was so impressed with Nietzsche’s books, that he actually gave them out to Mussolini and others personally because of all those teachings.
Here you have now a Christianity proclaimed, though largely there are exceptions, of course, but largely from the pulpits of Germany that did not have a Christ qualified to save anybody from their sins. I need to underline that because I want you to know that when the church loses the simplicity of the Gospel, when the church no longer invites sinners to trust Christ as the only Savior, the church has not only failed in its mission, but no longer really has a biblical right to exist.
So the kind of Christianity had now become a kind of political kind of Christianity. Christ was no longer exalted as King, as Lord and Savior. And I would say that it was in the universities and the seminaries in Germany, where ministers were being trained, that the seeds of the ovens of Auschwitz were being planted.
Thirdly, you have a kind of Christianity that had greatly separated its religious side from involvement. Now this gets a little tricky, so I’m going to give you an example. The people said, “As long as we sing our hymns, and even if we have our Bible studies, let’s not get involved in the political process, even if things are happening that we are against. That is not our responsibility. We are supposed to obey the State (and Germans were taught that, and the ministers pounded it into their heads from Romans 13). We are supposed to obey the state whether we agree with the state or not, and no matter what the state does.
There’s a story that comes to me about a church that had a railroad track right by it, and on the railroad track there were cars of people, victims, being taken to one of the concentration camps. And as the train would rumble through the town, they could hear the screams of the victims in these boxcars. And all that the church did in response was sing its hymns more loudly so that the screams of the people would be drowned out. Now that’s the kind of context in which the church found itself when Hitler came to power.
I want you to take your Bibles and turn to the third chapter of the book of Daniel (Daniel, chapter 3). To use this simply as an example of what three people did when they were confronted with a situation in which religion and state had become one, and they were given the option of whether they would bow down and worship their civil religion or whether they would not. The story is, of course, is about the three Hebrew children. I’m going to pick it up in chapter 3, verse 13. Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego do not bow down before this image, and so someone tells the king about it, and this is what he says in verse 13. “Then Nebuchadnezzar in a rage and anger gave orders to bring Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego; and these men were brought before the king.” And he responded and said to them, “Is it true, Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego, that you do not serve my gods or worship the golden image that I have set up? Now if you are ready, at the moment you hear the sound of the horn, the flute, the lyre, the trigon, psaltery and bagpipe and all kinds of music, to fall down and worship the image that I have made, very well. But if you will not worship (that image), you will [immediately] be cast into the midst of a furnace of blazing fire; and what god is there who can deliver you out of my hands?’ Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego answered and said to the king, ‘O, Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to give you an answer concerning this [matter].’”
By the way, I just love their response. They’re saying, “Hey, we wouldn’t even have to dialogue about this. “If it be so, our God who is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king, that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.” If God delivers us, fine! If He doesn’t, fine too. We will not bow!
For the most part, the German church bowed before the image. A little bit of history as to how it happened: First of all, Hitler began with lies. He loved lies. In fact, he said that the bigger the lie, the better. In fact, he said it does not matter how big a lie is. As long as it is repeated people will eventually believe it. So he loved big lies. He stood up on the Reichstag after he was elected and said, “I want to work with the churches. In fact, Christianity is essential to safeguard the soul of the German people.” And he desired a peaceful accord, and he sent overtures of peace to the Vatican that he might be able to embrace the Catholic faith as well. He said that the churches can have freedom (quote) as long as they do not do anything subversive. Oh, the wealth of meaning in that statement! As long as they do not do anything subversive.
He lied about his intentions. He lied about the Jews. He knew the myths that were rampant in Germany, and he used them. The myth was that it was because of the Jews that Germany had lost the war. Everybody knew that that was a myth, but it was widely believed, and Hitler capitalized on it.
He would lie about his enemies. His men would make up charges against them so that they could be hauled into court. Pastors were accused of sexual impropriety. They were accused of treason, of theft, of misconduct of all kinds of deeds, just so they could be brought into court and then severely punished. Hitler loved to find a pretext for his actions. The Reichstag fire of 1933 was generally believed, in fact, almost certainly believed, to have been the work of his own men taking a man and at gunpoint forcing him to begin that fire, because it was after that, that Hitler killed a thousand of his enemies, and told the people in Germany, “I had to do this to save Germany.” He took full responsibility and said this needed to be done because the times were dreadful and they needed a strong solution.
Kristallnacht began as the result of a Jew killing a German. It was a wonderful pretext for all that devastation and destruction throughout Europe that many of you know so much about. So what he did is he used all kinds of manipulation and lies to make sure that he could get what he wanted, and the lies became headlines in the press.
By the way, he also gave people an alternative to church. You did not have to go to church to have your baby christened. The SS troops would do it for you. The fathers would bring their children on a shield, and that shield represented Germany. It represented the Third Reich, and the child was, in effect, given to the state, and then its name was put in the register. You could be married without going to the church. That also could be done by officials, and Mother Earth and Father Sky were often called upon to witness the great event of marriage. The children were not allowed to sing Christmas Carols in schools, and prayer in schools was, of course, forbidden. And Christmas turned into a pagan festival.
So you have several years of this mythology, several years of lies and manipulation, and it softened the people up and got them used to a bigger idea, and that was how the laws that would come along. First come the lies so that people might be able to understand a certain way to look at the world, and then you have laws that are built upon those lies. And the legal profession in Germany was rewritten overnight. Instead of believing that there were laws that were rooted in God and in the Word of God, or at least in natural law, Hitler did what every dictator, most dictators, have done, and that is he began to turn toward arbitrary law. And the people of Germany said, “The law and the will of Der Führer, that is to say “our leader” is one and the same. He becomes the law. I’m reminded of Louis XIV who said, “I am the state.”
First of all, you have the Nuremberg Laws that excluded Jews from citizenship, so they no longer were citizens. Then thirteen other decrees that soon made it impossible for them to live. They could not buy or sell. They could not be involved in any kind of work, and of course, eventually they were led to the concentration camps.
You have laws that came in for the pastors, and this is next week’s message when I talk about how the church was specifically crushed. The pastors were supposed to not only sign loyalty to Hitler, and most of them did, that they would be loyal to Hitler, but the Aryan clause, which said that no one of Jewish blood could serve in a pastorate in Germany. There were laws against treason, and treason meant being critical of the Reich. And then, of course, there were laws for schools. Every school teacher had to sign a personal oath of loyalty to Hitler. And Hitler said to the people of his day, “Your child,” he said to the parents, “belongs to us. What are you? You will pass away, but your descendants will be here.” And he said, “They will be a part of our new community, and we,” he said, “will be the ones to train your youth.”
Why do I mention this business of laws, because as you look at America today you can see that that’s exactly where the battle is taking place, is it not? And when Hitler’s henchmen were tried at Nuremberg, what they said was, “We did not break any laws.” You see, the reason they said that they should not be tried as criminals is because, to quote the words of Eichmann, “I obeyed the laws of my country and my flag.” The laws were rewritten so that Jews would be non-persons. Therefore, they never killed any human beings. They only killed animals, if you remember last week’s message.
Now here’s the point. We think of our nation. We think of the Supreme Court. We think of the 1973 decision regarding Roe vs. Wade arbitrarily made, literally made up out of nothing. And I know that the excuse was privacy, but actually, when you stop to think of it, everybody I think acknowledges that this is not in the Constitution but we live in an era where laws can be rewritten. And when some pro-lifers called abortionists murderers, those abortionists wanted to accuse them of slander because they said, “How can you call us murderers when we are breaking no laws?”
You look at American history and you will find that the greatest battle we have right now going on in our hands... We have many battles but the most important is our laws, our Supreme Court, and what is happening in the courtrooms of America.
Well after the laws, of course, then come the lashes. I chose that word because you’ve already guessed it. I wanted to have three “L’s” in a row. So you have lies, you have laws, and then you have lashes. Or you can say propaganda, prosecution and persecution. That came next. Pastors who did not sign on board were removed from their pulpits. Many of them were thrown into prison and arrested, and many of them died. And there are some heroes to be heard about, as we shall see in some future messages. But do you know what the sad fact is? It’s that most submitted to the will of the Führer.
Do you know what Hitler thought of Protestants? Here’s a quote: “You can do anything you want with them. They will submit. They are insignificant little people, and they are as submissive as dogs, and they sweat with embarrassment when you talk with them.” Well, there were some people, not many, but there were some who were not as submissive as dogs, and I will tell you about those in a future message. But folks, I need to read you a paragraph from Shirer’s book, The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich. And I read this paragraph with a heavy heart, and I want you to listen to it, because his analysis is probably correct, and what an indictment to the church in Germany this is, and an indictment for us as well.
Shirer said, “It would be misleading to give the impression that the persecution of Protestants and Catholics by the Nazi state tore the German people asunder, or even greatly aroused the vast majority of them. It did not. A people who had so lightly given up their political and cultural and economic freedoms were not, except for a relatively few, going to die or even risk imprisonment to preserve freedom of worship. What really aroused the Germans in the thirties were the glittering successes of Hitler in providing jobs, creating prosperity, restoring Germany’s military might, and moving from one triumph to another in its foreign policy. Not many Germans lost much sleep over the arrest of a few thousand pastors and priests, or over the quarreling of the various Protestant sects. And even fewer paused to reflect that under the leadership of Rosenberg, Bormann and Himmler, who were backed by Hitler, the Nazi regime intended eventually to destroy Christianity in Germany if it could and substitute the old paganism of the early tribal Germanic gods, and the new paganism of the Nazi extremists. As Bormann, one of the men closest to Hitler, said publicly in 1941, ‘National socialism and Christianity are irreconcilable, but nevertheless, most of the church signed on.’”
It’s easy to be critical of them, but I wonder what we would do if it came to the point of saying that we would be thrown into jail, that we would lose our jobs. I’ve known people who have cheated just to keep a job. Would there be people who would be willing to actually die for the cause of the Gospel and to die for Christ?
Let me bring this to some kind of a resolution and application by noticing some of the lessons that are so important for us to learn. The first is the power of propaganda versus the power of truth. Jesus said, “You shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free.” The Scripture says that Satan is a liar and he is the father of lies, and he lied from the beginning.
Oh how desperately we need in our culture to separate between the lies and between the truth. And we think of cultural conditioning. We think of the barrage of things that come to us from the media and in the newspapers, and perspectives that are constantly shaping our thought that are coming from our culture. And sometimes we are unaware of them. And if I may say generally speaking, the church in Germany was paralyzed because it had become so part of the political structure that it could no longer sit in judgment of it. It could no longer critique it. It could no longer say to the nation, “Behold your God.” It could no longer exalt Jesus Christ as the one and only Savior because Jesus had been made into a mere man. And therefore it was drained of its spiritual impact, and it was drained of its power.
Jesus said on one occasion, “You are in the world but you are not of the world.” We are supposed to be in the world like a ship is in the ocean, but when the ocean gets into the ship we are in trouble. You know, the only thing that would have spared the German church, the only thing that would have given Hitler something to be concerned about is if the church had repented and sought God, they would not have been as submissive as dogs as Hitler said about them. They would not have been sweating with embarrassment when he spoke to them. And I say to you and to me today, that if we want to be able to sit in judgment of our culture, that is to say if we want to stand above it, if we want to say to our culture, “Behold your Savior and your God,” we cannot become such a part of it that we lose our credibility, and our ability to critique what is happening in our own world.
Well, we talked about the lies that are believed in our culture. What about the lies that you have personally believed about yourself? You know, the Bible indicates our great need of a Savior. We can rationalize our own selves. We can rationalize what we do. We can rationalize our sin so that we end up believing a lie, and forgetting that God is a God of truth, and that in His presence, we are in great trouble. And if you are a believer in Jesus Christ, you can believe lies as well quite easily; lies about your need to always be defeated. You know there are some Christians who say, “I’ve got to commit the same sin over and over and again because there is no deliverance.” That is a lie. It’s a lie but it’s a lie that holds people bound. We learn from this experience the need for truth, and also the power of lies.
Secondly, we learn the lesson about the power of laws, or the power of the state. I have always, in this series of messages, related what was happening to Antichrist, and I will do so very briefly today by pointing out that in the book of Daniel, chapter 7, verse 25... In fact, if you have your Bibles still open to the third chapter of Daniel we can look at chapter 7, and we can see in verse 25 this is a reference to Antichrist. Daniel 7, verse 25: “And he will speak out against the Most High, and wear down the saints of the Highest One, and he will intend to make alterations in times and in law (and in law), and they will be given into his hand for a time, times and a half a time (for that three and one half year period that we talked about).”
What is Antichrist going to do? He is going to, first of all, teach people a lie: “I am God,” and that won’t be hard for people to believe, because some people think already that they are God. And so what he will do is say, “I am God.” There’s the lie. Here’s the law: “You bow down and worship me. You take my mark on your forehead or on your hand or you are in deep trouble.” And if you don’t do that what comes next? You will be put to death. The power of laws! The power of laws1
And I would say that we have a responsibility as a church to do all that we possibly can to train attorneys, to train those who are in the legal profession, and to be able to support those organizations that are committed to maintaining our freedoms.
Do you realize how quickly it could all end for us? James Dobson said on a program recently that there was a law in Congress that almost passed, and would have passed were it not for a filibuster which, in effect, would have shut down his family radio ministry. It would have four attorneys who looked at the law told Mr. Dobson it would require him to give to the government (to an agency of the government) his entire mailing list because he would have had to be registered as a lobbyist. Now this was put under the banner of (quote) lobby reform. You’ll notice how things are always passed in Congress. Everybody’s for reform, and probably we need some lobby reform.
You see, what is happening in America is as we become more pagan, as we begin to leave God, you will see the encroaching power of the state continuing to gobble up our freedoms. And I don’t want to be melodramatic, but we do need to watch that because there are people who will not be happy until Christianity has been stamped out, unless, of course, all that we do is study our Bibles and listen to the trains rumble by and then just sing our hymns a little more loudly. That is not a threat to the state.
When we were in China ten years ago, I remember the tour guide as we began to question her about freedom of religion. I’ll never forget her famous quote. I mean, she doesn’t know it’s famous, but it was famous because it was very important to me. She said, “Oh yes, of course we have freedom of religion in this country.” She said, “People can be as religious as they want to be within their own minds.” In other words, the state has taken over everything. It has gobbled up what you can read, what you can see, what you can hear, who you can talk to. It has outlawed freedom of worship, etc. but the state has not yet been able to control the mind, so you can be worshipful and religious there.
And I want to say to you that there are some people in America whom, I believe, will not be happy until Christianity has been confined to the human mind. But I want to ask you today, as I ask myself, “What would we do, what will we do when those kinds of moves are being made?”
I think of a pastor in Sweden who was in jail for three weeks because he preached against homosexuality under the law that said he was committing verbal violence. Now, you know, this has to do with the politically correct idea, but actually you can say something and be committing a crime because it can be construed as violence. And therefore you cannot speak against certain pet liberal theories.
What do we do? A number of years ago when I studied this out, my heart was so heavy because I was told that in our universities today there are many Christian students who will not open their mouths for Christ, who will not take a stand against some of the things that are clearly unscriptural, and they have to be silent in order to get through and to graduate. Let us not be critical of Nazi Germany because it is the seeds of that kind of cowardice that eventually produces a commitment to a leader who says, “Obey me or die.”
Do you know what I think? I think that if every Christian in America just stood for Christ and said, “If I don’t graduate, if you fail me, I won’t get through grad school, I won’t get through medical school, but I need to do what is right,” I think that the Christian church in America would have such a great impact upon its culture that people would shudder. But we have too many people who are absolutely silent. They say, “If I open my mouth, I will not graduate,” or “If I open my mouth, I will be fired.” I know that’s the same kind of spirit that enabled one man to arise and say, “Unless you swear allegiance to me, you’re dead,” and most people said, “We swear allegiance.”
Finally, I think what we need to reiterate again is the awesome power of the Gospel. I want to contrast what happened in Germany with what happened in China. Here in Germany where the Gospel, for the most part, was lost... I keep saying for the most part because there were some wonderful exceptions that I’m going to tell you about at some other time. But, for the most part, the Gospel was lost, and do you know what they told us in China when we were there? Bishop Ting, with whom we met, said (quote), “Even though I don’t agree with you folks theologically, I know where you are coming from because (and here’s the quote now) Christianity, he said, wiped out theological liberalism in China, and what was left after all that persecution was a church that was basically evangelical in nature, believing in salvation by faith through Jesus Christ alone.”
And when I heard that I thought, “Well, you know, that only makes sense. Of course persecution would wipe out theological liberalism.” Can you imagine a liberal being willing to die for a Christ who was only a man? I doubt it. God used that process in China to sift and to work deep repentance in the lives of His people. And you know that there were a half million people when Communism took over in 1949, a half million Christians among the hundreds of millions. And what happens today, the estimate is fifty million believers in China. No Christian radio! No opportunity to witness! I know things have opened up a little bit more recently, but throughout all of those decades no opportunity to witness! No Christian literature could be distributed, or for that matter even read. And the church grew anyway. Why? Because there were believers who said that we cannot compromise with the state even if the state says, “Bow down and worship the image or you will die.” And hundreds of thousands died, but as Tertullian said so many years ago, “The blood of the martyrs became the seed of the church.”
Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego have a lesson for us. They said, “Look, king, we wouldn’t even have to talk about this. This is nothing to dialogue about, but since you’ve raised the issue, we will not bow before the image because our God can deliver us, and if He doesn’t deliver us, it doesn’t make any difference. We will not bow before the image.”
I believe that what God is calling all of us to say and to do is to say that in our sphere of influence, wherever He has planted us, where we are supposed to be salt and light, not that we will become unnecessarily obnoxious, though it may require that at times, but that we might say, “By God’s grace we will not submit to our culture. We will not become a part of that which dilutes the Gospel, and by His grace we will be the kind of people we should be rather than when the difficulties come simply bowing, submissive as dogs and sweating with embarrassment because we believe in Jesus Christ.
My message today is multifaceted, but it comes down to the bottom issue of a commitment to Christ, to love the Lord our God with all our hearts, with all our minds, and with all our souls, whatever it takes and whatever the cost.
And a footnote. If you are here today and you have never believed on Christ, I want you to know that that’s most important decision that you could make. Christ is the one and only Savior. You need a personal relationship with Him just as these people did because any other faith will evaporate when difficulty comes. Only those who know a triumphant Savior can endure. And even at this moment you can trust Him.
Join me as we pray together.
Our Father, we pray that You might prick our hearts and help us to learn from what happened in the past. And then help us to turn to Your Word and to see what others have been able to do. And we think of the Apostles who said, “We have to obey God rather than man.” Now Lord, we have in our congregation nurses and doctors and lawyers and factory workers and accountants and all kinds of vocations. Father, would you make us faithful wherever we are, knowing that even the small compromises are really the seeds of the larger compromises that are sure to come. And we pray that, as a church, we may never lose focus on the wonder and the opportunities that are still ours to share Christ with the freedoms that we have.
And now, Father, for those who have never believed on Christ, in this moment, though they perhaps they have come to church for a different reason, cause them in this moment to say, “Jesus, would you receive me? I trust You as my Savior.”
And we pray these words in His name, Amen.