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4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (12,305 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Eric Metaxas Narrator: Malcolm Hillgartne Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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In April 1933 Hitler's "Aryan Paragraph," a law banning Jews from working within the German government, went into effect. Since German churches relied on support from the state, most complied by dismissing their pastors and any employees of Jewish decent. Deitrich Bonhoeffer's faith, however, compelled him to defy Hitler and speak out against him. Within days of the implementation of the new law, Bonhoeffer published an essay titled "The Church and the Jewish Question" that asserted Christians have an obligation to help victims of the state, even if they were not of the Christian faith. His convictions drove him to stand up to a regime that few dared.

Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy: A Righteous Gentile vs. the Third Reich is a detailed account of this complex person. In addition to being an outspoken Lutheran theologian, Bonhoeffer became a double-agent, spying on the enemy and pretending to be in subjection to the regime, all the while gathering information that would be used in an assassination attempt on Hitler.

Bonhoeffer's understanding of his faith required more of him than adhering to a personal moral code and a life of non-violence. His rejection of Hitler's philosophy was unique for a loyal German, especially a religious man. This audiobook contains never-before-revealed facts about his intriguing saga.

Eric Metaxas is a well-known American biographer. In addition to Bonhoeffer, he wrote Amazing Grace: William Wilberforce and the Heroic Campaign to End Slavery. His other works include children's books and television scripts, including Veggie Tales and Strawberry Shortcake. Bonhoeffer's works have won awards and attracted accolades, including the 2010 Evangelical Christian Publishers Association's "Christian Book of the Year" Award.

Metaxas is also known as an effective commentator, narrator and debater. He's commentated for CNN, MSNBC and Fox News. Additionally, he's been featured on NPR and The History Channel, and has debated at the Oxford Union, the nation's oldest debating society.

Mataxas resides in Manhattan with his wife and daughter.

This New York Times bestseller is the groundbreaking biography of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, one of the greatest heroes of the twentieth century, the man who stood up to Hitler. A definitive, deeply moving narrative, Bonhoeffer is a story of moral courage in the face of the monstrous evil that was Nazism.

As Adolf Hitler and the Nazis seduced a nation, bullied a continent, and attempted to exterminate the Jews of Europe, a small number of dissidents and saboteurs worked to dismantle the Third Reich from the inside. One of these was Dietrich Bonhoeffer—a pastor and author. Eric Metaxas takes both strands of Bonhoeffer’s life—the theologian and the spy—and draws them together, presenting the fullest account of Bonhoeffer’s life written to date. He tells of Bonhoeffer’s heart-wrenching decision to leave the safe haven of America to return to Hitler’s Germany and sheds new light on Bonhoeffer’s involvement in the famous Valkyrie plot, as well as “Operation 7,” the effort to smuggle Jews into neutral Switzerland. Since his death in Flossenbürg concentration camp at age thirty-nine, Bonhoeffer has grown to be one of the most fascinating, complex figures of the twentieth century. This fascinating account uncovers never-before-revealed facts about the profoundly orthodox Christian theologian, including the story of his passionate romance.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “In Hitler’s Germany, a Lutheran pastor chooses resistance and pays with his life…Eric Metaxas tells Bonhoeffer’s story with passion and theological sophistication, often challenging revisionist accounts that make Bonhoeffer out to be a ‘humanist’ or ethicist for whom religious doctrine was easily disposable…Metaxas reminds us that there are forms of religion—respectable, domesticated, timid—that may end up doing the devil’s work for him.”

    Wall Street Journal

  • “Massive and masterful.”

    Christianity Today

  • “In this weighty, riveting analysis of the life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Metaxas offers a comprehensive review of one of history’s darkest eras, along with a fascinating exploration of the familial, cultural, and religious influences that formed one of the world’s greatest contemporary theologians. A passionate narrative voice combines with meticulous research…Abundant source documentation brings to life the personalities and experiences that shaped Bonhoeffer…Insightful and illuminating, this tome makes a powerful contribution to biography, history, and theology.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Raised in a strict German family, Dietrich Bonhoeffer studied at prestigious schools and later became a Lutheran pastor, theologian, and, finally, a martyr. The National Socialist policy of hatred against Jews led him to join the Nazi resistance and then to a plot to murder the Fürher. The biography contains large doses of religious doctrine and history necessary to understand how Bonhoeffer came to the beliefs that put his life in peril. In English, narrator Malcolm Hillgartner speaks forcefully and slowly. He avoids any characterizations in the quotations, instead reading them straight from the page. While neither perfectly pronounced nor perfectly consistent, weaknesses in his delivery of German should not distract most listeners from this important life story.”


  • “Moving, comprehensive, and engaging…Metaxas tells a compelling story…Recommended.”

    Library Journal

  •  “A welcome new biography of one of the twentieth century’s leading lights. Metaxas magnificently captures the life of theologian and anti-Nazi activist Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1906–1945), who ‘thought it the plain duty of the Christian-and the privilege and honor-to suffer with those who suffered.’ In the finest treatment of the man since Eberhard Bethge’s Dietrich Bonhoeffer: Man of Vision, Man of Courage (1970), Metaxas presents a complete, accessible picture of this important figure, whose story is inspiring, instructive, and international in scope…Metaxas rightly focuses on his subject’s life, not his theology, though readers will learn plenty about his theology as well. The author makes liberal use of primary sources, which bring Bonhoeffer and other characters to vivid life. For the most part, Metaxas allows this epic story to play itself out, unhindered by commentary; where he does add his own voice, the conclusions are sage. A definitive Bonhoeffer biography for the twenty-first century.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • A USA Today Bestseller
  • One of Barnes & Noble Top 10 Books for 2010
  • One of Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books of Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books
  • Winner of the Christian Book of the Year Award in 2011
  • Winner of the 2011 Christian Book Award
  • One of Relevant Magazine’s Top 10 Books
  • Winner of the 2011 John C. Pollock Award for Best Christian Biography of the Year

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Renah | 2/13/2014

    " Wow. I was really impressed by this book. Both an engrossing story about a fascinating and complex man, and a clear and convicting challenge to live in faith-- not just "for something that matters" but wholly committed to God and in obedience to whatever his call might be. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Lisa Hayes | 2/11/2014

    " My current audio--should be required reading for ALL Christians today. Scary parallels to today's world in this book......... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Dustin | 2/10/2014

    " Great book. Pacing was a bit slow at times, but that's expected with a biography. There's something in this book for everyone. If anything, Bonhoeffer shows that Christians need to have a healthy, Biblical interest and understanding of politics. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by B Jeanne | 2/1/2014

    " The Lutheran Shindler, some called him. Inspiring true story from NAZI Germany and the sacrifice one man made because of his deep faith and beliefs. "

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