God on Trial

God on Trial June 29, 2013

Some think it could be urban legend, but we do think that this actually happened in Auschwitz concentration camp during the Second World War. The Jews, holding a covenant, a legally binding agreement if you will, with God, decide that God has broken the covenant. After all, how can bad things happen to good people; but not any old good people – God’s chosen people? Surely such preference entitles the Jews to a little safer passage along Earth’s historical timeline, though persecution after persecution? The only logical thing to do, it appeared, was to put God on trial for breaking such an agreement.

The problem of evil is no better investigated in dramatic narrative than in the excellent 2008 BBC drama of this remarkable event in all its terrible context. I urge any and all who have not watched this to do so. It’s thoughtful, philosophical, critical and very moving. And it’s written by a Catholic, though feels overtly secular.

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  • Peter

    In your previous post I mentioned the urban legend idea and it got me thinking. If it did happen in Auschwitz who survived to tell the story? Doesn’t matter, whether true or not it does illustrate the whole problem of a caring, loving god allowing evil to happen. He’s not caring. He’s not loving, he’s a psychopath which is fully revealed in the OT starting with Adam and Eve myth. He did, after all, have a tree of the knowledge of good and evil . So he/she created evil from day one. He’s the original mid-east terrorist and a prototype for today’s religious fanatics.

    • David Marshall

      If God is a psychopath, why did he let you think those thoughts? Why did he let this film be made? Why did he allow strawberries? Why do naturalists like EO Wilson break into spontaneous praise while studying the natural world? Why do I feel refreshed and delighted every time I take a hike through the mountains? Why do so many good people who have changed the world seem to be in communion with Him? (Including people like Corrie Ten Boom, who also went through the camps, or Richard Wurmbrand?) Why is His Son so obviously good?

      I’m sympathetic to the film, and to the sentiments. As a cry, as a complaint, put into the mouth of a Job, absolutely. As a challenge to God, sure, He can handle it. But as an explanation of life, very incomplete.

      • Andy_Schueler

        Why is His Son so obviously good?

        John 8.

        I’m sympathetic to the film, and to the sentiments. As a cry, as a complaint, put into the mouth of a Job, absolutely. As a challenge to God, sure, He can handle it.

        http://youtu.be/QVgZqnsytJI?t=11m46s

      • Peter

        What does being a psychopath have to do with strawberries or nature? Try reading the OT and see how your god killed or had killed. Read you NT to see how good the mentally ill JC was. For instance, the way he treated his mother and family. Even they thought he was mad. (Mark 3:20-21). First, though, prove there is a god?

        • Daydreamer1

          Just as a side note look up the history of the strawberry…. It is an example of artificial selection. It tastes that nice because we chose it’s evolution.

          Peter:
          Very true. It almost begs a book ‘Psychopaths still like Strawberries’. Psychopaths still feel pleasure, it is just selfish. If God gets pleasure from the worship of billions then that by definition puts ticks in some of the boxes on the Psychopath Test. There is no direct connection between creating something and requiring it to worship you. I am capable of giving my children freedom and do not require their worship – I do not even expect their respect unless I earn it. If I can do it then it should be within the power of a God, which means it is Gods choice – another tick in the psychopath test box.
          Perhaps the fault lies at the stereotype of psychopaths as serial killers. 99.9% are not. 99.9% are simply selfish people concerned only or almost only with their own gain. To that end you can expect to tell a psychopath by the difference between what they tell you and how they act. Promising you that you’ll get everything that you want while punishing you and creating or not stopping harm to people is exactly what we expect from psychopaths.

    • As far as I can remember, they know they did it, but they are not sure of exactly what happened or what the outcome was. I will look into it…

    • Apparently a teenager witnessed it:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Trial_of_God

      • Peter

        Elie Wiesel, so that is where it came from. A survivor, one of a few. Where were we before Wiki? Thanks Jonathon.