Proverbs 8:13 “The fear of the Lord is the hatred of evil.”
“No matter what happens in life, be good to people. Being good to people is a wonderful legacy to leave behind.” These words came from Time Magazine’s 1938 Man of the Year, and Germany’s Chancellor from 1933-1945, Adolf Hitler. Leading the “National Socialist” (Nazi) Party, he was personally responsible for the murders of at least 11 million people, including 6 million Jews, nearly 2 of every 3 Jews in Europe.
On January 27, 1945, 75 years ago, the Soviet military entered the Auschwitz concentration camp after the SS, Adolf Hitler’s paramilitary organization, fled with 60,000 prisoners forced on a “death march.” What the Soviets discovered was one of the most horrifying scenes of anything encountered during World War II.
Thousands of prisoners were so malnourished they were described as beyond hope of recovery, and thousands of dead bodies were in piles throughout the camp. Nazi mass murder and other atrocities resulted in the deaths of 1.1 million out of 1.3 million prisoners. The ability to murder so many non-combatant, innocent people in so short a time came with the Nazi implementation of the “Final Solution”.
Auschwitz, located in southern Poland, opened in 1940 and was the largest of the death camps. But it wasn’t fitted with gas chambers until the “Final Solution” was implemented in 1942. This is when the genocide of the Jewish nation went into full swing. Hitler’s goal was to kill large numbers of Jews quickly.
What is the reason behind Hitler’s murder of so many? Dr. Richard Weikart, Professor of history at Cal State University, explains in ‘The Role of Darwinism in Nazi Racial Thought’: “I will highlight how Nazi racial thought was shaped by Darwinism (defined as biological evolution through natural selection). First, almost all Nazi racial theorists believed humans evolved from primates. Second, they provided evolutionary explanations for the development of different human races, including the Aryan race. Third, they believed that differential evolutionary development of the races provided scientific evidence for racial inequality. Fourth, they held that the unequal human races were locked in an ineluctable struggle for existence. Fifth, they thought that the way for their own race to triumph in the struggle for existence was to procreate more prolifically than competing races and to gain more ‘living space’ to expand. These points formed the Nazi backdrop for eugenics, killing the disabled, the quest for living space, and racial extermination.”
So, if Darwinian evolution is the foundation of the Nazi worldview, why is this never taught in our schools, and why do we so often hear that the evils and cruelty of Nazism demonstrates there is no God since He never intervened to stop them? The wickedness of the Nazis, under discussion this week in the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Jewish survivors at Auschwitz, is actually a strong evidence for God.
Dr. Alvin Plantinga, one of the most important analytic philosophers and winner of the 2017 Templeton Prize for how, as the President of the Templeton Foundation announced, “his scholarship has made theism (the belief in God) a serious option within academic philosophy”, explains why the horrors of Auschwitz are a powerful argument against Darwinian evolution and for the existence of a theistic God:
“Could there really be such a thing as horrifying wickedness if there were no God and we just evolved? I don’t see how. There can be such a thing only if there is a way that rational creatures are supposed to live. A secular way of looking at the world has no place for genuine moral obligation of any sort, and thus no way to say there is such a thing as genuine and appalling wickedness. Accordingly, if you think there really is such a thing as horrifying wickedness, then you have a powerful argument for the reality of God.”
C. S. Lewis (1898 – 1963), a giant in Christian apologists who is best known for books like Mere Christianity and movies like The Chronicles of Narnia, explains why the existence of evil pointed him to Jesus Christ:
“My argument against God was the universe seemed cruel and unjust. But how had I got this idea of ‘just’ and ‘unjust’? What was I comparing this universe with when I called it unjust? I could have given up my idea of justice by saying it was nothing but a private idea of my own. But if I did that, my argument against God collapsed – for it depended on saying that the world was really unjust, not simply that it did not happen to please my private fancies. Thus atheism turns out to be too simple.”
As the world remembered the elimination of one of the greatest symbols of evil the world had ever seen, we must also take notice of why we know, through the existence of evil, that the God of the Bible exists.
The Evidence of Faith’s Substance – Article #384