Sin can be illustrated by an equation, and that can help us understand it and reduce it.
Our Sunday School class is studying the New Testament book of James, written to the Jewish Christians of the diaspora by James the brother of Jesus in the late 40s AD. James was the pastor of the church in Jerusalem, and He provides powerful, practical advice for successfully living the Christian life. The first eight verses of chapter 1 discuss the Christian’s need for wisdom and God’s promise that He will provide it, so long as the believer asks in faith. Verses 9 to 11 mention the transitory nature of life, and the consequent even more transitory nature of riches.
James 1:12-18 takes a different track, discussing the nature of temptation and sin, and explaining that God cannot tempt or be tempted, but instead creates His people and provides every good thing for them. One could summarize these verses with the following equation:
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Usually, the question “where are you from?” is not a “microaggression” but an honest effort to meet a new person. For either party to interpret it otherwise is foolish, selfish, and reduces the possibility of a relationship that could bless them both.
A stocky, white, middle-aged man stood behind the counter at the fencing school as I approached. “I am looking to take lessons. Do I sign up here?”
“Yes,” he said in a thick Russian accent.
I love to get to know people, the studio wasn’t very busy, and I knew nothing about “microaggressions,” so I asked, “Where are you from?”
“Minnesota,” he replied.
“No, where are you from originally?”
“Baltimore,” he answered.
“OK, where is your accent from?” I persisted, eager to learn about his big life adventure.
“Russia,” he said.
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Research brought the world scientific and technological advances that have changed the lives of men and women forever. During the period characterized by the philosophy of modernism, from roughly 1750 to 1950, conventional wisdom expected that science would solve all the problems of mankind, both material and moral/ethical. Scientific and social research, which would lead to technological supremacy over the physical world and enlightened policies in every society, would usher in a utopia. World War II, the Holocaust, and the atomic bomb shattered these hopes, demonstrating that science and technology, and the research behind it, can destroy as easily as they can save. Though we prate about following “science,” in the past 70 years, research has lost respect.
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In the March 2021 issue of The American Journal of Medicine, seven physicians, whose first names suggest that they are all female, wrote “Investigating Gender Disparities in Internal Medicine Residency Awards.” The authors began by recounting gender disparities in salary, academic rank, grant funding, and awards. They performed a multi-institutional study based on survey data from academic internal medicine residency programs starting in 2009 and extending through 2019. These physicians’ initial findings are in Table 1:
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