- Moshe Ben-Chaim
What do you answer a person who asks where G-d was during the
holocaust and how He could have let such a thing happen to His
We do not have all the answers as to how G-d works.
G-d said that if He didn't reveal to Abraham what He was about to do
to Sodom and Gemorrah, it would be hidden from Abraham. This means
that there are areas of G-d's justice which one cannot penetrate
without G-d's intervention.
We do know however that there was much assimilation going on in Europe
at that time.
- The talmud states that a righteous person who has evil befalling him
is a righteous person - but he is not 100% righteous. A
righteous person who has good, is a righteous person who is
100% righteous. This gemara teaches that there is no punishment
without some sin. This makes sense, as punishment is the act of G-d
correcting some flaw. If there is no flaw, no punishment is needed.
Additionally, King David said that many evils happen to a righteous
person, but he is saved from all of them.
- We are not in a position to determine every aspect of a person's
life, so we do not know how righteous a person actually was. We might
see someone who we believe to be 100% righteous, but evil happens to
him. Only G-d knows if he is truly 100% righteous. I would also remind
this person about G-d's destruction of the Egyptians, the delivering
of Manna in the desert for 40 years, and mostly, G-d's creation of man
to bestow good upon him. Yes, we should try to understand the
tragedies, but not at the cost of forgetting all of the good. Keep the
- Additionally, G-d may operate to execute a plan which the good is
not seen for many years, or decades, or centuries. He also works with
the method of trials, that being a painful endurance placed on man,
not due to any sin, but to actualize a higher state in the person
tried. I do not suggest this is the case with the Holocaust, but I
state this so as to show how there are many methods of how G-d
administers His justice. Many of which we are ignorant.
- What we can do is learn about how G-d related to the forefathers, to
Moses and to all the righteous, and learn from there to the best of
our abilities what G-d's justice is.
See also Tehillim (Psalms) 91, and 34.
- One who sincerely desires to understand G-d's justice will
investigate and exhaust all areas.
- This area requires much further elucidation.