Remembering the Catastrophe
This morning at 10:00am, every ear in Israel heard rocket sirens wail for two minutes straight. Yet no rockets were intruding their borders. No families had to flee to their bomb shelters within their homes. No one was under attack. The nation was not under imminent threat. Instead, every Israeli stood at attention and observed two minutes of silence, save the sirens. When they wailed their last, Jacob’s children living in the Land of the covenant began to move again.
Today commemorates the six million Jewish lives lost during the years of Hitler’s demonic dream, defined by a word historically referring to a Jewish sacrifice burned up entirely on the altar. It is “Holocaust” Remembrance Day.
Seventy-three years after the end of the Second World War, we remember the catastrophe of genocide. We remember the catastrophe of delusion. We remember the catastrophe of international inaction. We knew about Auschwitz’s ovens long before we destroyed them. It was an unforgivable duration. It was a catastrophe. It was the “Shoah.”
We are a generation removed from this exposure of man’s darkest capacities, and we are reminded today we cannot forget. We cannot pretend nations are not capable of horrible ambitions and disgusting complicity. As we stood in Israel this morning and remembered the lives devoured more than seventy years ago, as the sirens intruded business as usual, we were reminded mankind did not abandon war after VE Day. We looked to Syria just over Israel’s northern border and mourned the Syrian lives taken by chemical gas even within the last week. We know we have not yet left our last catastrophe behind us.
More than ever, we need the Gospel of the Kingdom declared. We need the rule and reign of David’s trustworthy Son. We cling to Jesus and the hope of the Great King coming again to His holy city, teaching the nations to “learn war no more,” when the sting of death has been mocked by the resurrection of the saints.
Until then, we refuse to forget the Catastrophe.