In February 2008, aÂ Canadian, who wasÂ convicted of brutallyÂ torturing and killing nineÂ people at a Nazi prisonÂ camp more than 60 yearsÂ ago, was extradited to Italy.
Michael Seifert faces a life sentenceÂ in Italy where, seven years ago inÂ an Italian military court, he wasÂ convicted in absentia of war crimesÂ committed during his time as an SSÂ guard in the Second World War. SeifertÂ has acknowledged being a guardÂ at the camp in 1944 and 1945, butÂ denies being involved in the atrocities.
Because he lied about his birthplaceÂ and former occupation when he wasÂ applying for Canadian citizenship, itÂ was revoked.1
Since he arrived in Canada inÂ 1951, Mr. Seifert has lived in BritishÂ Columbia where he married andÂ raised a family. No doubt he thoughtÂ his guilty past was forgotten, but legalÂ justice finally caught up with him.
There is no thought that any goodÂ deeds that he has done since the darkÂ days before 1951 will compensateÂ for his crimes. He is now waiting forÂ Italian authorities to decide whatÂ they are going to do with him. We areÂ reminded of a verse from the Bible,Â â€œâ€¦ be sure your sin will find you outâ€Â (Numbers 32:23).
The Italian tribunal, however, is notÂ the final judgment that Mr. Seifert willÂ have to face. He, like everyone else,Â will have to face the judgment of GodÂ for his sin, for â€œIt is appointed onto menÂ once to die, but after this the judgmentâ€Â (Hebrews 9:27), and â€œthe wages ofÂ sin is deathâ€¦â€ (Romans 6:23). HowÂ thankful we are that this verse doesnâ€™tÂ end there, but adds â€œâ€¦ but the gift ofÂ God is eternal life, through Jesus Christ our Lord.â€
The good news for Mr. Seifert andÂ for all of us is that God has providedÂ a way of escape so we do not haveÂ to suffer the eternal punishmentÂ for our sin. In His love and mercy,Â God sent His only Son to bear theÂ punishment for so us that â€œâ€¦ weÂ might be made the righteousness of GodÂ in Himâ€ (2 Corinthians 5:21). We canÂ do nothing to earn this salvation. â€œForÂ by grace are ye saved through faith; andÂ that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:Â not of works, lest any man should boastâ€Â (Ephesians 2:8, 9).
Share this Post