So you're writing a book, or screen play and you need a compelling villain, but you don't want to offend anyone, what do you do? You use the Nazis. Yes the Nazis are a group that is still seen throughout our modern culture as still being in no uncertain terms evil. We even call people Nazis when we think they are being too strict or mean. If you were to ask people if they were for or against the Nazis most people would say they are against the Nazis, but do we even know why the Nazis were evil? Yes their name is associated with evil, but is that all we understand about them? I fear for many people that is the only reason they understand the Nazis to be evil. The more educated person might say that the reason the Nazis were evil is because of what they did to the Jews, which is that the murdered a lot of Jews in this thing called the Holocaust. This is of course what the Nazis are most known for, and for good reason because the Holocaust is the great tragedy of the 20th century. Even understanding this there are still questions that arise as to why the Nazis were evil. One question is, if that is the only reasons the Nazis were evil, and then the next question is why is it that killing the Jews was so evil in the first place? Why is it that the Nazis wanted to extinguish the Jews from the world? Why was this called "The Final Solution"? Why were the Jews such a problem for the Nazis? One might be tempted to claim racism as the reason why the Nazis wanted to commit genocide, however it is foolish to think that something as irrational as racism could have lead to such support for the The Final Solution alone. I do believe racism played an important part, but it was not the sole factor. It does not fit that the Nazis just woke up one day and decided they were going to get rid of anyone who was a Jew. There was a worldview behind this, and in fact getting rid of the Jews, was not an end, but rather a means toward an end. The Nazis believed they could create some kind of super race as they defined it, and believed the Jews stood in the way of this super race, and thus had to be eliminated. Even achieving this super race was not the end goal for the Nazis. They believed with a race of super humans, eventually all the weaker humans would be gotten rid of and then there would be a Utopia on Earth. So the Nazis were evil because they wanted to make a Utopia? In a sense yes. Is the concept of wanting the Earth the be a better place bad in and of itself? The answer is no. Is it wrong to strive to make the world a better place? The answer again is no. There is an old saying that goes, "The road to Hell is paved with good intentions" While the saying is not Biblical, I do believe it is in alignment with a Biblical worldview. It was not wanting to make a utopia that made the Nazis evil, it was what their utopia looked like, and the means by which they were willing to achieve it that truly revealed their wicked hearts. To understand this one must understand the fundamental philosophy and worldview that drove the Nazi movement. This also requires an understanding of why the Nazi worldview lead to such suffering, which is because it is fundamentally inconsistent with reality. The type of utopia that the Nazis wanted to created was so far removed from people's real experiences that they would have to get rid of every person on earth in order to achieve it. The Jews would have been the first to go, but had the Nazis not been stopped, the Jews would not have been the last. When one operates on a worldview that does not coincide with reality, suffering will be the result. For example, if I were to have the worldview that gravity does not exist and so acting on this worldview I jump out of a window three stories up, I will suffer. That is an easy example of how life really is. Not all of reality is that easy to observe. This is why it is necessary to compare worldviews, understanding that you have yours,and they have theirs, seeing what you disagree about and then making a determination on which worldview is most consistent with reality. I strive to have a biblical worldview, as I believe that scripture is most consistent with reality. This is one of the reasons I enjoy apologetics because it enables me to test my understanding of my worldview, but to also see how my worldview reflects reality. Of course the reason I have this worldview is because I have been given faith through the power of the Holy Spirit to believe that Jesus Christ has died on the cross for my sins, and rose on the third day. Since I believe that through Christ all things were made I believe He has the authority to define how reality is, which I believe He did through His apostles who were inspired by the Holy Spirit. It is through understanding my worldview, and then understanding the Nazi worldview that I can see how it is evil and will lead to suffering. The Christian terminology for this would be that the Nazis were sinful, and violated the laws of God and man. Worldviews are so important because how we view the world will affect how engage the world, and if we engage the world in way that is inconsistent with reality, then suffering will be the inevitable result. What do you think? Have I made any good points, any mistakes? Why do you think the Nazis are evil? Comment below, let me know!
6/12/2015 12:25:20 pm
Wow... this is probably the best article you have written so far. There is so much material in which to talk about. I would like to recommend a book by Ravi Zacharias called The Lamb and the Fuhrer: Jesus talks with Hitler. It is one of his Great conversations series. It is an imagine conversation between Hitler and Jesus about the nature of power, issues of life and death, evil of violence in light of the value of human life and the timeless search for unity in diversity. The two exact opposites of peace and evil, love and hate, humility and pride, and life and destruction. Also included in the conversation is Albert Speer who kept the death camps running with his control of the armaments and Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the famous pastor and theologian.
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