Sometimes connections can be uncomfortable.  My family name on my mothers side was “Hahn”.  I am not sure where we came from in Germany but I know that Friedrich Nietzsche’s Grandmother was also a Hahn and that his relatives all came from Saxony, which is where the Lutherans that we claim our Missouri Synod heritage from came as well. Nietzsche came from Lutheran parents.  His Father was a Lutheran Pastor.   Most people I know are familiar with him only because of the music from “2001 a Space Odyssey”.  It is uncomfortable because Nietzsche is, I believe, the inventor of our modern malady of “postmodernism” at least as far as the idea that there is no “objective truth” is concerned.  He is violently anti – Christian and I would say anti – mercy.  Anyway you can read him for yourself.  I am interested in one pithy little phrase –

Friedrich Nietzsche once said in a mean and nasty way that Jesus, “stuffed so much into the heads of paltry people”.  It is quite true. Although we really don’t have a whole lot of Jesus preachings, not many of  his sermons, what we have is quite profound. Matthew Harrison wrote “for Christians, the bottom line is this: who God he is, is how we will be. Because we are God’s very own in Christ we reflect who is….The holy Trinity shows his mercy and gives it to his people; thereby he makes us merciful people. As merciful people, God calls us to “regard as human beings” the most unlikely, lonely, unknown, and – to the world – insignificant. To God the poor are rich, the sick or healthy, the suffering are Christlike, the unlovable are loved. This is the nature of Christ.  The apostle Paul writes that “God shows what is weak in the world to shame the strong”. The mercy of God as revealed in the death of God on cross. The cross reveals the glory of God.  Our calling to serve the lowly and poor is our calling to be merciful as God is merciful. To fail to do so is to deny the holy Trinity.”
Nietzsche saw that call of Jesus as a reason to forsake Christianity, and call it the most poisonous, decadent, weakening, and malignant form of all falsehood”.  In his essay called “Antichrist” he says that Christianity “converted every value into its opposite”.  That is precisely correct. Our Savior took the values of the fallen creation and showed that they were sin. He turned those values upside down.  He cleansed our will and gave us life.  It is wonderful to see how Christs turns the worlds values on their heads.  You can read how he does it very quickly by simply reading the sermon on the mount. Matt 5: 3-12