You are certainly keeping us thinking! There is much food for thought in what you say. Believers in the soon coming of Christ must be prepared to mature in their thinking about apocalyptic. And you have provided significant pointers if we wish to do so. Yet this is not to say that I follow all of your logic in this present essay.
You delight to point out “the vulnerabilities of historicism as the key to Bible prophecy and the lens through which to determine what is important in history.” Adventists have certainly used historicism to do these things you suggest. We have often been immature in our presentation of these things. Correctives are needed and welcome. But please do not tell us that we must throw the baby out with the bathwater, ie. throw historicism out wholesale, just because our interpretation needs to be broader and more all encompassing.
Sigve, you are very content to tell us what we cannot believe in, ie historicism. But you have not told us what we will put in its place.
However grand the evil of humanity is and however well it is illustrated in the Holocaust, in the Rwandan genocide, and in the atrocities committed in the former Yugoslavia, these three events are only a small fraction of the evil atrocities hidden within the C20th. With the help of Mr Google I have put together a collage of all this.
The worldwide death toll of WWII is estimated at 55 million.
"World War One was one of the deadliest conflicts in the history of the human race, in which over 16 million people died. The total number of both civilian and military casualties is estimated at around 37 million people . The war killed almost 7 million civilians and 10 million military personnel.
Mao Zedong, founder of the People’s Republic of China, qualifies as the greatest mass murderer in world history, an expert who had unprecedented access to official Communist Party archives said yesterday. In 1957 he launched a campaign known as the Great Leap Forward that aimed to rapidly transform China’s economy from agrarian to industrial. This campaign led to the deadliest famine in history and the deaths of 20– 45 million people between 1958 and 1962.
Hitler was responsible for between 11 million and 12 million noncombatant deaths, while Stalin was responsible for at least 6 million, and as many as 9 million if “foreseeable” deaths caused by deportation, starvation, and incarceration in concentration camps are included.
Estimates of the total number of deaths resulting from Khmer Rouge policies, including disease and starvation, range from 1.7 to 2.5 million out of a 1975 population of roughly 8 million.
Surely, it is debatable that the Holocaust “towers above all other atrocities in the twentieth century”, as you have stated.