James Carroll, in “Constantine’s Sword, The Church and the Jews,” implicitly invoked the law of unintended consequences when he described the Church’s dilemma regarding the Holocaust. Carroll contends, for example, that the Church did not fail to rise to the challenge posed by Hitler out of cowardice, anxiety over Bolshevism, or preoccupation with its own power and prerogatives. He cites…..
As Abraham Joshua Heschel once said, “the Holocaust did not begin with Auschwitz. The Holocaust began with words.” And too many of those impactful words were written or spoken by Christians — church leaders, theologians, preachers, teachers, and ordinary Christians — for close two thousand years. Words, obviously, have consequences, intended and unintended, especially when they lead to action, which can be for good or evil.