. . . By understanding Napoleon as the completion of history, Hegel understands man as such and therefore the man he himself is: the consciousness of the external (Bewusstsein ) thus coincides with self-consciousness (Selbstbewusstsein ). It is in Napoleon that Hegel finds "self-certainty." He is sure of being a Wise Man possessing absolute Knowledge because, thanks to Napoleon, the reality which he describes is definitively completed. And since Napoleon (being originally, before the "reconciliation," a Frenchman who is an enemy of the German) is really other than Hegel, Hegelian thought, which accounts for Napoleon, is more than a "subjective certainty" (Gewissheit ): it is the revelation of an "objective-reality" (Wirklichkeit ), that is to say, a truth (Wahrheit ). Now the (Napoleonic) reality which it reveals is completed in itself. It is therefore perfect or absolute and, at the same time (thanks to Hegel), perfectly conscious of itself. It therefore is the absolute Spirit, the Spirit which Christians call "God." And that is why one can say that Napoleon is the "appearing" or "revealed" "God" (der erscheinende Gott ), "revealing" himself to or through Hegel and his disciples, that is to say, to and through those who know that they are henceforth only "pure knowledge," that is to say, the "absolute Knowledge" which negates nothing, and therefore creates nothing, but reveals perfectly the real which is fully completed in and through its finished historical becoming.

André Kojève
"Hegel, Marx and Christianity"
translated by Hilail Gildin