SEE NO EVIL: The Existence of Sin in an Age of Relativism

Harry Lee Poe, Author . Kregel $14.99 (201p) ISBN 978-0-8254-3371-9

Poe (Designer Universe ), the Charles Colson professor of faith and culture at Union University in Jackson, Tenn., starts with a worthy premise—that sin was a lost concept among non-Christians until 9/11; that modern philosophy cannot explain sin; and that Christians have misdefined it—but redundancy and a lack of focus keep the book from fulfilling its promise. In an engaging first chapter, Poe notes that everyone has values, suggesting "some external point of reference." God is the reference point; at the same time, people justify their behavior by deceiving themselves about God. Poe soon arrives at a crucial question: What is sin? It is not mere rule-breaking, since that standard passed away with the Old Testament law. Instead, "sin is ultimately a matter of one's relationship with God and the fact that we turn every one to our own way." Since this departs from historic doctrine, as Poe points out, it merits thorough explanation. But the book does not explicate the scriptures used to support the legal definition of sin, instead detouring into values and the root cause of sin. Furthermore, the excessive anecdotes obscure some points rather than illuminating them, such as an extended discussion of darkness and light. This is a timely book with interesting ideas, but they are not fleshed out. (Nov.)

Reviewed on: 09/27/2004
Release date: 11/01/2004
Genre: Nonfiction
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