My father used to wonder how the German people could be swayed by the speeches of Hitler. He thought if he understood German, he could better understand the man's ability to garner such support and admiration. What would be missing, even if my father could understand German, are the conditions in Germany post World War I. Those terrible economic conditions contributed greatly to the willingness of people to find hope in any clear voice. Their defenses would be down.
We can almost understand how a desperate people, suffering under the terms of an oppressive postwar treaty that emasculated a proud people with a proud history, could be disheartened enough in their daily lives to be easily moved a positive, promising, affirming message. We do not relieve them of the responsibility of turning a blind eye to the fate of their Jewish (etc.) friends and neighbors that came with that message, but we must be careful not to assume we would act differently under the same conditions. Most of us have never lived in such desperate conditions. We are careful to not speak in absolutes. And, remember, they were lied to.
We cannot deny that in some ways life did improve in Germany under Hitler's policies. Again, that is no excuse for the acceptance of or cooperation with evil, but we can see, at least to some degree, how a desperate people, often concerned about the bleak future their children were facing, could refuse to acknowledge other things going on in their communities. This same reasoning (personal economic inconvenience) is still used as an excuse to accept evil even in our day.
Surely, some in Germany were predisposed to approving wickedness. There is no excuse or any degree of understanding for this group. There is no "trying to understand" the source of their selfishness and hate. The answer is found in the flesh (as it usually is). These walked according to the lusts of their flesh and the longer they walked in the flesh the deeper their wickedness grew and the greater their sense of self-righteousness. Evil often calls it self good as it calls good evil.
Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!
My father wondered how so many could accept the wicked policies of Herr Hitler. As conditions improved (he had delivered on many of his promises) we can start to see their blindness even as we still question how it happened.
We may still wonder at the average German citizen's decisions. What we do not spend time trying to understand is the open hatred a section of that population had for what they deemed "inferior" people who were deemed a "hindrance" to their success or the cause of their failures. There is a legitimate reason to separate the Germans who were trying to balance many different emotions in a difficult time from those who gleefully embraced evil for their selfish desires.
Some of the NAZI policies were so wicked that even a megalomaniac like Mussolini showed apprehension. Some of the Fascists in Italy could not go as far as the National Socialists in Germany. It was when Hitler invited Mussolini to review the German military that Mussolini knew Italy was in no position to question its northern neighbor. But even in alliance with Germany, many Italians did what they could to protect at least some of their Jewish neighbors.
As horrible as it is to think of innocent men and women being put into labor camps, the more terrible it is to think of children facing that fate. I could only watch the film "The Boy in the Striped Pajamas" (2008) once. This brings me to my sense of wonder at how some could, often militantly, promote, encourage, and even celebrate the torture and slaughter of the unborn in abortion.
Europe has historically had some of the most liberal abortion policies in the world (in terms of choice, outside of communist countries with forced abortions). Yet even European abortion policies acknowledge that there is a point at which slaughtering a baby is unfathomable and simply wrong.
The vast majority of European nations do not allow abortion after 12 weeks (30% into a pregnancy). The most liberal policy is in the UK which allows abortion up to 24 weeks (60% into a pregnancy). I am openly pro-Life and cannot imagine actively taking the life of my own child in the womb at any point (and we still mourn my wife's two early miscarriages), but I can almost
understand how a single mother or young girl, scared of facing the future alone with a child to look after contemplating the act. I can almost
understand how some could accept the ending of a life in the early stages in a culture that tells them these children are "not yet human." That sounds familiar. As with the German people just trying to survive, we are careful not to assume how we might act or what bad decisions our circumstances might engender if we found ourselves in the same straits. We can remember this level of empathy while simultaneously decrying the act as inherently wrong.
The loudest voices for abortion in our day, in our nation, have moved on from the "rare and safe" mantra and have moved on to "do it for your wallet and career." There is a celebration of abortion. Some women proudly brag of their many abortions. I cannot have any sympathy for these women or for their enablers. There is no room to understand a difficult decision they may have faced that led them to make a difficult decision if they are proud of that decision. Their consciences are seared and they glory in their deed.
We witnessed the abomination of Planned Parenthood selling the body parts of murdered babies. We watched them laugh with glee at the idea. When confronted with the evidence, they first denied it. They tried to blame "deceptive editing." But when the facts were clear, their true hearts were also made clear. They went from denial to the celebration of the "good" they were doing by selling baby body parts. As the German government sold the bones of murdered Jews, so too does Planned Parenthood sells the flesh and bones of the most defenseless among us.
And as we look back at the chart on European law, some American politicians are pushing for abortion up to the killing of babies in the birth canal! Horrible wickedness. Have these ever watched an abortion? The burning and dismembering of babies in earlier weeks is horrible enough to witness, but a fully developed child in the birth canal? Abominable wickedness.
And if you can believe it, there are some who are pushing for post-birth murder. Some have suggested up to one month old! Starving a baby for convenience sake! Even more horrible when there are so many waiting to adopt. This is where compromise with evil leads.
How have we come to this point, then?
As my father wondered how the German people could hand over their neighbors to the state police, I used to wonder how those people in scripture could sacrifice their children to the fires of Moloch. But we're seeing what false gods can do to the unenlightened and/or unredeemed mind. God gives the the stubborn over to a depraved hearts.
We might try to understand how a desperate people could accept certain laws, whether in Germany or in regard to abortion law, it would be impossible to understand those who gleefully embrace wicked laws. How could some "celebrate" the mass murder of "undesirables?" How could parents sacrifice their children to Moloch?
We have the answer in scripture. We are all born with an old nature that seeks its own, but to reach the depths of wickedness and callous attitude towards the torture and murder of children, one has to feed the flesh and have such a high opinion of oneself that he sears any conscience God may have given him.
For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, 21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things. 24 Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, 25 who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen (Romans 1)
The followers of Moloch were "religious." In fact, they were fervently religious. The children of Israel who worshipped in the high places against God's will were devoutly religious. Those who built the golden calf did it to honor the God who brought them out of Egyptian slavery. They danced and sang with all their might. The prophets of Baal cried out all night. Religious fervor is not what he Lord desires, he desires faithfulness, selflessness, and righteousness according to our calling
. All of these lead to a worship of that which is seen.
Whether atheists or occultists or scripture-denying professed Christians, we see this worship of the Creation laid out in Romans 1. We see the worship of the temporal. We see the exaltation of financial gain and security over the life of a child. Again, we have some sympathy for the young girl, scared, confused, impressionable, who may make a tragic decision to end a pregnancy for those reasons. We can never, however, have sympathy (apart from a general sympathy for the state of their minds and their eternal fates) for those who celebrate and glorify the torture and death of babies (especially the unfathomable celebration of the killing of babies in the birth canal or even after).
Some of these death worshipers eventually infiltrate the true faith. This was true from Cain through Israel through Judas through the abandonment of Paul through our day. All were counted among the faithful, yet they abandoned the true for a lie. They abandoned the spiritual for the carnal. They appeal to personal greed and the promise of someone else's wealth without the effort. Those in power play on their jealousies and hatreds, teaching them that such jealousies and hatreds are actually signs of personal virtue.
The principle is seen in Jude.
But I want to remind you, though you once knew this, that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe. 6 And the angels who did not keep their proper domain, but left their own abode, He has reserved in everlasting chains under darkness for the judgment of the great day; 7 as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them in a similar manner to these, having given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.
8 Likewise also these dreamers defile the flesh, reject authority, and speak evil of dignitaries. 9 Yet Michael the archangel, in contending with the devil, when he disputed about the body of Moses, dared not bring against him a reviling accusation, but said, “The Lord rebuke you!” 10 But these speak evil of whatever they do not know; and whatever they know naturally, like brute beasts, in these things they corrupt themselves. 11 Woe to them! For they have gone in the way of Cain, have run greedily in the error of Balaam for profit, and perished in the rebellion of Korah.
12 These are spots in your love feasts, while they feast with you without fear, serving only themselves. They are clouds without water, carried about by the winds; late autumn trees without fruit, twice dead, pulled up by the roots; 13 raging waves of the sea, foaming up their own shame; wandering stars for whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever.
How can we understand how professed "devout" Catholics like Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi support abortion, suggesting even up to birth
? An abortion at any point in the pregnancy is considered a "grave sin" in Catholic theology. A grave sin, unconfessed and unforgiven, damns the Catholic soul to hell
, no matter anything else.
And professed Catholics are not alone in their compromise with wickedness. We have professed Christian "reverends" and active members who teach that abortion is actually a good thing.
Now, as readers of this blog know, I do not hold to the traditional doctrine of fiery torment nor to the idea of "sinning away" what Christ has put on our account by his perfect sacrifice
. So, my answer for how so many active Catholic politicians (and even priests and nuns) can support the murder of a child is partly explained by the weakness of any "law-keeping." Even the holy and good Law of God given at Sinai is deficient. How much more deficient the laws of men?
What the Law can do is show us that what is we might acknowledge as wrong is exceedingly wicked. It is a mirror to show us our true selves. But one does not use the mirror to try and clean the dirt from his face.
If one has deluded himself into thinking he can fully keep all (or even any) of the Law, he has deceived himself and finds a righteousness in himself and a virtue in his flesh that is not there. He has exchanged the truth for a lie. He has refused to see the function of the Law. And these are those deluded into thinking they are "good" in themsleves, how much more deceived are those who discard all knowledge of God?
We could do a whole study on examining how the Law becomes "the power of sin," but the simple answer is that while the Law of God is spiritual, it applies to the flesh. And men in the flesh will fail it. We must walk in the new nature
That being said, we come back to the main idea: how could some men and women celebrate the ending of the life of a child in her mother's womb? How did we possibly get to this point? Dismembering a baby in the birth canal? Unimaginable just a few years ago.
The woman who celebrates her 8 abortions almost certainly did not celebrate the first one. Her conscience has become seared over time with each new act of selfish murder, aided and abetted by politicians and preachers who saw power and money (and self virtue) in her acts of selfishness.
We are reminded that the scripture teaches us to put no faith in the flesh. No Law can tame the flesh. The flesh is prone to evil while at the same time it sees itself as virtuous. Combine this exaltation of the carnal in this age with the spiritual war against all of us from principalities and power in heavenly places (Ephesians) and we start to understand levels of wickedness some of us thought we'd never see. And as the end times approach, even the little restraint some men have will be lifted to reveal the true depravity of the person outside of truth.
I leave with two thoughts:
- Believers need to walk in the new nature from above, recommit to the finished work of the Savior alone, abandoning all hope in the flesh.
- Recommit to speaking for the most vulnerable among us.
Many Germans would not speak up for their Jewish and Gypsy and other "undesirable" (deplorable) neighbors as they were carted off to the death camps, let us not take the same silence as our government glorifies women as they cart their babies off to their horrible deaths.
Even if we cannot win the legal battle, we must still speak up for those who have no voice.
For those interested in walking according to the new nature, I have a 6-part series on the topic starting here: