Holocaust Remembered

Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons      Acts 10:34

I have just finished watching another epic Ken Burns documentary on PBS. This one was about the Holocaust and America’s response to it. It is a sobering look at the great genocide perpetrated by Adolf Hitler and the Nazi regime. He explores it from its early roots in the 19th century when eugenics theory began to take hold in many Western countries, including the United States.

Eugenics was an evil presented as scientific truth. It manifested itself in fears about “inferior races” taking over countries by replacing their population with high levels of immigration and high birth rates. It was just a short step for Hitler to demonize Jews with all sorts of maniacal charges, and blaming Jews for the German loss in World War I, high inflation, etc. Hitler had found scapegoats. He killed millions of them.

When I was a kid growing up on Mayfair Ave. in a suburb of Cincinnati, one of our gang of friends was a girl named Betty. I met her parents, and her mother showed me something on her inner left forearm. It was a tattooed number. She was a concentration camp survivor whose national origin was of the Roma people.

That was my first glimpse of institutional evil. I didn’t understand it at the time since I was about 9 years old. But I still remember that tattoo and what it attested to.

Jesus was born with a lineage of various ethnic backgrounds, some of which were detested- marginal people who were not considered civilized or worthy of consideration by other races and cultures.  I think God’s plan was deliberate in having Jesus come from multi-ethnic and multi racial origins.

People who discriminate today against other races and people groups are literally rebelling against God.

Prayer: Lord, give us better understanding of your love for ALL people, Amen.

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