Friday, October 12, 2012

Book Review: "Night" by Elie Wiesel

I recently listened to this audio book while on my regular commute to work.  You can buy it HERE.

I cannot put into words how angry I often was listening to this book.  I was thoroughly bummed out and feeling over-whelmed by rage against those committing the atrocities documented in this book.  It is accounts like this that persuade my support of Bonhoeffer's conclusion that Hitler must be stopped.

"If your opponent has a conscience,
then follow Ghandi and non-violence.
But if your enemy has no conscience,
like Hitler, then follow Bonhoeffer."
~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

Reading this book provoked in me a pride in being American I rarely experience.  Listening to the devastating degree to which depravity can be practiced stirred in me a desire to sign up for the WWII army and liberate the persecuted.  I am glad America stepped up to protect their neighbor. 

I hate that this happened.  I hate that power and politicking could produce the circumstances for this to occur.  It was not an isolated incidient of a groupthinktank gone wild flash mob.  This went on for years.  People doing this to other people.  Plenty of opportunity to repent.  Plenty of opportunity to consider.  My blood almost literally boils in desiring to make it stop and the frustration that I cannot.  I cannot make it go away.  This really happened.


I am glad Hitler is dead.  I'm not going to lie. Mostly because I am glad the ovens of Germany were shut down and destroyed.  Hitler was not going to do this voluntarily.  I am glad that young men signed up and spent their lives in war to put an end to the Nazi machine.  I am glad that some laid down their lives for the hope of saving the lives of others.  May God grant me the courage and strength to step up if ever my neighbor would need me to protect them from such atrocities. 

Psalms 10:17-18

O LORD, you hear the desire of the afflicted; you will strengthen their heart; you will incline your ear to do justice to the fatherless and the oppressed, so that man who is of the earth may strike terror no more.

God in His wisdom, mercy and justice has turned over some to their own hardened hearts.  His wrath is observed in His reluctance to show up and convict their hearts of their own sinfulness. His judgment is seen in men performing such brutalities on others without His Spirit to soften any of their sensitivities.  When God does not show up to rebuke, it is His wrath.  Oh His mercy to both those called and inspired to lay down their lives to defend their neighbor AND in rebuking the Nazi Germans for their tyrannies.  He is gracious to raise up men in number enough to confront those guilty of sin and insanity.  God's grace to Germany was allowing them to be destroyed.  In their Nazi state, they were hardened and darkened beyond their ability to repent.  Praise God for His might in both defending and liberating those abused by Germany and in revealing to Germany in power their need to confess and repent of their ways.

Proverbs 21:13

Whoever closes his ear to the cry of the poor will himself call out and not be answered.

I am glad I read this book even though it was hard to read.  It is good sometimes to be exposed to that which God never turns His eyes and ears.  I can turn off the news when it gets too bleak or refrain from turning my thoughts to such dark reports. God hears the cries of the perishing and does not close His ears and eyes to their cause.  He always hears them.  Imagine if every atrocity ever committed was revealed to you in exquisite detail.  God knows all of this and yet in His grace sends the rain on all of us.  May more ponder on this and turn to Him who provides them all things.

1 comment:

  1. i'm sure this was a difficult, devastating book to read. it's sometimes difficult to allow myself to face the reality that this ACTUALLY happened - it's almost unfathomable.

    i have always loved your sense of and desire for justice.