So today I got a question (like 10 mins ago actually from writing this one – it just caught my eye in time!). So the question is as follow.
I really hope that this does not come across as offensive, however as a part of my study of religion essay I need to get an ethnographic survey, and it would be fantastic to get your views on, “How could an all-loving, all-powerful and all-knowing God allow the Holocaust?” Truly it would be a great help. Thanks 🙂
First of all no worries about it being offensive, I have no issues answering actual legit questions. In two words – free will.
There is a couple of things you have to remember. The first is we can not simply understand what G’d is, how such a being came into existance or any grand plans but what we do know is G’d loves us and only asks that we love G’d back. The problem with this however is you can not be forced to do so – it isn’t really love at that point. Imagine you wanting for someone to love you and then holding a gun to their head so they have no choice – that isn’t really love is it?
Thus we was gifted with being able to think for ourselves and with this it means we are able to do what we please – the Holocaust is a very good example with this (but sadly it isn’t the first time something like that has happened within Jewish history). As we have been given free will to do as we wish it would also only be logical to assume G’d will not get involved as simply if he did then we don’t exactly have free will – simply applied will to what he wants.
The point I am making is simply G’d allows us to make our own choices and that we must live with it until the very end, then we are dealt with accordingly. If we agree that humans should have free will, we must also accept that we must live with what other humans do.
Just as an old saying says from a man called Elie Wiesel:
“After the Holocaust I did not loose faith in God. I lost faith in mankind”
Kyle ben Avraham Avinu (קייל בן אברהם אבינו) (2013) How could G’d allow such a thing. [online] Ask a Jew. Available at: https://askajew.co.uk/question/how-could-gd-allow-such-a-thing/ [Accessed 06 Dec 2023]