“Silence in the face of evil is evil itself.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Dietrich Bonhoeffer was a Lutheran theologian in Germany during the reign of Adolf Hitler. His book, “The Cost of Discipleship”, has become a classic. Focusing on the “Sermon on the Mount”, the book more or less spelled out what Bonhoeffer thought was the true way to follow Christ. In addition to his theological writings and teaching, Dietrich Bonhoeffer was a staunch, anti Nazi dissident. He spoke out vigorously against Hitler’s euthanasia and genocidal persecution of the Jews and, in so doing, became a hated enemy of the Third Reich. As such, he was arrested in April 1943 and on April 9, 1945 was hanged, accused of the ambiguous crime of “plotting against the Nazis”.
We move ahead 69 years to 2014. The following is a statement from His Grace, Bishop Suriel of the Coptic Orthodox Church, Diocese of Melbourne:
“The world watches in silence as the last Christians are expelled from Mosul, Iraq, in one of the most merciless and barbaric acts of genocide we have seen in the 21st Century.”
We are absolutely fascinating creatures, we humans are. Many of our species can be so kind and compassionate, loving and gentle, sweet and understanding. Many people will save a tiny bird with an injured wing or a cat stuck up in a tree. They will send money to perfect strangers to help them through a crisis. They will feed the hungry, clothe the naked, visit the sick and give drink to the thirsty.
Then you flip the coin over and you have many of the very same species who are filled with a self-gratification which culminates in a hate and disdain for others of their own kind. These include those who will torture and kill their fellow humans for the most obtuse reasons such as: religion, skin color, birthplace, political beliefs or whatever other self-serving reason a murderer may come up with. Many kill and torture saying they were “only following orders” and had no choice. Others kill because of pride fueled by envy and greed.
So I ask why? Why are we, all of the same species, so different in our hearts? How can some of us kill and others forgive them for doing so? Why do some of us willingly and joyfully give of ourselves for people we may not even know? Why do some of us hate others they may not even know? Why are there those that love their fellow human being unconditionally? The answer has to be because of the very existence of “good vs evil”. What is “Good vs Evil”? I can tell you what it is and I do not care if you disagree. It is the war waged by Satan and those that follow him against the God of Love that created him and all of his followers. If you take a breath and look at the world of today and then glance back at yesterday and the centuries before, what has changed in the hearts of man?
Mosul, the very cradle of Christianity, can trace the followers of Jesus back to the first century. As of today it seems that the entire Christian population of Mosul has been purged from this ancient and historic city. Murder, including beheading of civilians and the wanton murder of women and children has virtually eradicated the city’s Christians. And what do we see and hear from the print and broadcast media? We hear the sound of nothing. We hear the sound of a “Shameful Silence” that reverberates throughout the very souls of all the people vanquished because they were Christians.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer said it, “Silence in the face of evil is evil itself.” He was hanged by the Nazis for his “crimes” over 70 years ago. What has changed? The press was quiet then as the Nazis purged the world of the “hated Jew”. Most of the main stream media (print and broadcast) is quiet now as the Islamists purge the world of the “hated Christian”. The Shameful Silence is a disgrace. Nothing has changed, nothing at all.