Don Locke: Lookin Thru Bifocals
A plain-spoken young woman asked a college professor, “What the devil is sin?”
Mankind has a tendency to shy away from the word---it rankles and chafes us. We sometimes attach it only to the Evangelicals; the “Holy Rollers”. If this is true, they know things the rest of the world doesn’t. “Sin” is used at least 350 times in the Bible. As for the Holy Rollers, you think there wasn’t some rollin’ going on at Pentecost when Peter preached and 3000 were saved? I believe there must have been some dusty britches in the crowd. The first crack-out-of-the-box in Matthew 1:12 we read: “(Jesus) will save his people from their sins.”
We suffer from sin in many ways…ways we perhaps don’t think about. For instance, when we open a bottle as aspirin we first must get the tough plastic off from around the cap. Then we must deal with the aluminum shield on the top of the bottle itself---often needing to cut both obstructions. This is because of the sin of murder. People began slipping poison into medicine containers on store shelves. Many people have died from this evil.
I sinned recently. He reminded me that, “Grievous words stir up anger”…Also, “A soft answer turneth away wrath.” (Prov. 15:1,2).
The dictionary calls sin, “The breaking of a religious principle or a moral law, willingly.” I say that it’s anything not like God, both in omission and commission. We area promised in 1John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, He, God, is faithful to forgive our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Buddha can’t; Mohammad can’t; Moloch could not. Only Jesus Christ.
Back to giving folks a “piece of my mind”, a well-known philosopher said (sometimes they do say some good stuff), “In dealing with others I must be scrupulously decent, not in order to feel noble, but to feel well.” At times when I’ve been impolite or peevish to someone I’ve nearly always felt badly afterward. I credit this to my parents, especially my mother, Gladys. Gladys had zero tolerance to bad behavior…that means a big NONE. She used no diplomacy. She simply took the razor-strop (It is pronounced “strop”) down from the KITCHEN WALL then it was KATY-BAR-THE-DOOR. Nuf. Cd.
Not being able to call up a lot from the study of sociology, HOWEVER, I do remember a good rule to live by: “Kindness and courtesy oil the bearings of human relationships.” This works anywhere…even in families---especially families.
Ben Franklin was a master of philosophy. From his book essays called, POOR RIHARD’S ALMANAC, he notes: “When passion drives, let REASON hold the reins.”