Back in the mid-1990s I wrote a book on sin. Each of us knows sin experientially, of course, but few of us know it comprehensively even in that way because we are parochial even in our sinning. So I had to study sin. For a couple of years I read about sin in the Bible. I read commentaries on the Bible, theological encyclopedia articles and books on virtue and vice.
The moving van arrived at the church manse on Saturday morning. (The storm that left us without power until today complicated this only slightly.) We are moving from a home with a garage, a basement, and a large shed into a church manse with a small shed, no basement, and no garage.
A father told about the tornado that hit his home in April. Racing to his son's room as it approached, he had just touched his son when suddenly the tornado ripped off the side of their house and pulled his eight-year-old son out into the night. The father and mother held on to their other children and cried out prayers to God.
Preachers have often imagined an anguished Abraham staggering toward
Moriah as he leads his son to his death. But the biblical account
contains no anguish, no heated arguments with Sarah (“Yahweh told you what?”),
no teetering on the edge of faith.