It has been twenty years since Alan Bloom claimed that his "nice" students lacked all ability to talk about evil. This was not a living category in the surrounding culture back then, and the students' connections with literature were too thin to supply them with a deeper view of things. The post-9/11 generation, however, has heard political rhetoric like the "Axis of Evil." However shallow the ability to speak of it, the word evil is at least part of the modern vocabulary. We can quickly name the evil: Osama bin Laden, Jeffrey Dahmer, Enron. Acts may have to be spectacular to earn such a label, but we understand it. Not so with sin.
Rick Ritchie resides in Southern California and is a long-time contributor to Modern Reformation. He is a graduate of Christ College Irvine and Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary.
Issue: "Using God" Nov./Dec. 2007 Vol. 16 No. 6 Page number(s): 41-42
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