Monday, April 26, 2010


When and where did the greatest sea disaster take place? It was with the sinking of the German ocean liner Wilhelm Gustlof in the Gulf of Danzig at the end of World War II. Over 9,000 people perished when the ship was hit with a torpedo by a Russian submarine in the terrible cold winter of January 1945.

   Because there was so many other issues in the news at that time the sinking was hardly reported in the papers. Few heard about the tragedy. The ship was filled with women and children, wounded German soldiers, and German submarine cadets on their way home to Germany. From Denmark, they were all attempting to escape the Russians who were closing in on both the German army and on civilians who were faced with the coming wrath of the Russian military for their destruction of Russia and the killing of some twenty million Russians during the war.

   As the ship was sinking thousands were trapped below deck and died (as the Germans said—like rates) as the vessel went down in the frigid waters of the North Sea. Many thousands of wounded soldiers were helplessly trapped in their hospital beds as the ship rolled over. Only a handful of people survived the sinking. The sailors of the Russian sub did not know the Gustlof was filled with so many civilians, though that probably would not have stopped the attack on the ship anyway. As the Russians were driving the Germans back home, they simply killed almost every German they came in contact with on their march westward. And earlier, as the Germans invaded Russia, they by their cruel hateful policy against God's people, automatically killed every Jew they came in contact with. On both sides, human sin was at fault throughout the conflict, and yet the bottom line was the judgment of God on both nations for their rejection of the Lord and His revelation in His Word.

   Germany was rampant with racial superiority and evolution, and Russia was living out social evolution with its own brand of atheism and the denial of the Lord. As far as was recorded, no one cried out for God as the ship sank into the deep. The number who died was almost four times more than in any other sinking in maritime history. God keeps good records and no nation will escape its rejection of the Lord in our world—even America! –Dr. Mal Couch (Apr., 10)