No One Came Out of the Gas Chambers Alive – Until These Men Did

by Leah Rosenberg

Everyone knew if he were to enter the gas chambers, he wouldn’t come out alive. But on Simchat Torah 1944, something incredible happened.

How These Survivors Came out of the Gas Chambers Alive

This story is one of the most inspiring, miraculous, and unbelievable stories of hope and faith. These men prepared themselves to die Al Kiddush Hashem – for the sanctification of G-d’s name. They said the prayer of Shema which is said before one dies. And yet, there was a glimmer of hope. Some of these men knew that G-d can save them in an instant – even during the horrors of the Holocaust; even when they were already locked inside the gas chambers.

There is an idea in Judaism “Yeshuat Hashem k’heref Ayin” – G-d’s salvation can come in the blink of an eye – in a moment (From a Midrash on the Book of Esther; Pesikta Zutreta, Esther 4:17). Living with the belief that G-d controls the world and therefore can change around a negative situation at any moment is comforting. He controls everything that happens – which leaves room in our lives for constant hope.

How these men had that feeling of hope during something as dark as the Holocaust is beyond comprehension. Even those who are G-d fearing struggle with having constant faith that G-d can save them. But for those who have as strong of a belief in G-d as these survivors did and do, then believing that G-d still could save them from the gas chambers was the only rational thought to have.

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