Destroying the Evidence - The Warrior's Journey®

Destroying the Evidence

Author: Chaplain, COL Scott McChrystal, USA (Ret.)

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“Therefore, the great multitude of the Jews learned that Jesus was at Bethany and came to Him. But they came not only for Jesus’ sake, but also to see Lazarus, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. So the chief priests also planned to put Lazarus to death. For, because of Lazarus, many of the Jews were going after Jesus and believing in Him.” (John 12:9-11) 

Is it possible that educated men, like these priests, could be so self-deceived that they would actually try to destroy evidence of Jesus’ Messiahship? Yes. No matter how educated a person may be, he or she is just as susceptible to prejudice and foolishness as the most ignorant man.  Education will never erase the sinful nature that blinds us. 

Consider the tragic example of Dr. Ignaz Semmelweis. In the 1840s Vienna, Austria boasted of one of the world’s greatest hospitals, the Allegemeine Krankenhaus. Yet for all its state-of-the-art facilities and the skill of its physicians, childbirth fever still claimed the lives of one in six mothers who gave birth there. The obstetricians blamed the deaths on everything but the real culprit – the bacteria they carried on their own hands. That’s right, these doctors would conduct pelvic exams of live mothers immediately after performing autopsies on dead ones – without washing their hands.   

One of the young physicians on the maternity ward, Ignaz Semmelweis, suspected that something was being transferred from the dead mothers to the live ones. So, when he took charge of the ward, he instituted strict guidelines for all doctors to wash their hands before and after all exams. The results were phenomenal. The mortality rate among mothers dropped from one out of six to one out of ninety-two! 

Was Dr. Semmelweis honored as a hero? No. The fact that he even suggested that the doctors were to blame for the high mortality rate brought severe criticism against him. The senior physicians discharged him from his position and suppressed the evidence he had compiled.  Tragically, the old horrific death rates returned. But the senior staff at the hospital, despite their education, remained unrepentant. 


  • Does education always make a person open-minded and honest? 
  • Can’t critics of Christianity be as dishonest with the facts as anyone else? 
  • Shouldn’t we give greater credence to the Bible? It has stood for millennia. 

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