by Ronald H. Matthews

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about Sin, but Were Afraid to Ask
Ronald H. Matthews
Genesis 2:15-17; 3:1-7; Romans 5:12-19; Matthew 4:1-11

This first Sunday in Lent, we review the topic of sin. This is a subject we are presumably against, but one in which we are also heavily invested. It permeates our lives and our world. According to the Apostle Paul, there is one remedy for this otherwise incurable plague on humanity. Do you know the answer? You will be tested.

An Early Grief
In the process of going through my parents personal accumulations I have been amazed at some of the things they saved away in drawers and boxes. Old photos, cards and letters, most of which you examine just to be sure something of value doesn't get tossed out. Several items have reminded me of my past and others have provided new insight into my parents. In one worn envelope was a photo of a beautiful border collie whose name was Lady, my first dog. It was wrapped in a tattered and yellow clipping of unknown origin on which these words were written:

The one absolutely unselfish friend that you can have in this selfish world is your dog. A dog will stand by you in prosperity and in poverty, in health and sickness. A dog will sleep on the cold ground when the wintry winds blow and the snow drives fiercely if only he may be near his master's side. He will kiss the hand that has no food to offer, he will lick the wounds that come in encounters with the world. A dog will guard the sleep of his pauper master as if he were a prince. When all other friends desert, he remains. And when death takes the master in its embrace and his body is laid away in the cold ground, no matter if all other friends pursue their way, there by the grave side will the noble dog be found, his head between his paws, his eyes sad, but open in alert watchfulness, faithful and true even to death.

So true, I thought while remembering Lady, my first best friend and my first introduction to grief. We were in ...

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