God’s hatred of the slave trade that Israel’s enemies practiced is described in several ways. It’s like a devouring fire. It’s like an invading army that has no mercy on the populace or the ruling authorities. Even the few that try to escape will be caught and destroyed. This is pretty clear in Amos 1:7-8 where God foretells the fate of those that enslaved his people. Amos reads, “So I will send a fire upon the wall of Gaza, and it shall devour her strongholds. I will cut off the inhabitants from Ashdod, and him who holds the scepter from Ashkelon; I will turn my hand against Ekron, and the remnant of the Philistines shall perish, says the Lord God.”  Gaza, Ashdod, Ashkelon, and Ekron are four of the chief cities of the Philistines. The fifth city that isn’t mentioned in Gath.

Those who had set their hearts on the complete annihilation of the Jewish nation will face God’s wrath, and they themselves will be utterly destroyed. The holocaust in World War II, carried out by Germany, was one of the greatest expressions of hatred for God’s people. Hitler wasn’t the first world leader determined to eliminate the Jewish people from the earth. Pharaoh in Egypt during the days of Moses had the same desire. Haman, as we see in the Book of Esther, is another example of such genocide. But God will not allow that to happen. I watched the movie “Oppenheimer” several weeks ago and was struck powerfully by one quote. It was in answer to the question of how America was able to get the Atomic Bomb before the Germans. Germany had its own “Manhattan” project but couldn’t get the job done. Why? The answer was because of Germany’s antisemitism. If the Jewish scientists had been allowed to do their work in Germany, there is no telling how the war would have turned out. But they either drove out all the Jewish scientists or murdered them. Those that escaped came to America and ended up being at the forefront of America’s race to invent the Atomic Bomb.

Germany was defeated by the combined forces of the Allies: England, America, and Russia. I’ve always thought that the Atomic Bomb came too late. It should have come in time to drop on Berlin. Amos prophesied that God promised to “send fire” upon the enemies of God’s people. Japan did not participate in the holocaust as such, but they were allies with Germany. One website informs us, “Overall Japanese policy and actions towards Jews as a group were one that could be characterized as studied even-handedness. The Japanese did not single out the Jews for special attention or restrictions because of their ‘ethnic’ or religious uniqueness. On the other hand, the Jews shared equally in the suspicion that the Japanese held for all neutral and non-Japanese nationals living within the Greater East Asian Co-Prosperity Sphere.”[1] From God’s earliest promises to Abraham regarding his descendants, God made it clear that those who supported Israel would be blessed. Those that did not would face a curse. Just as God brought the destruction of Israel’s enemies, the Philistines, so too did he bring destruction to Israel’s enemies in World War II. He rained fire upon them in a very literal way with the Atomic Bomb.

[1] Japan & the Jews During the Holocaust (jewishvirtuallibrary.org)