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The question of vice
Over the past weeks the press in the United States—and by extension the public—has been insatiable in its coverage of vice. Several notorious court cases have made vivid descriptions of violence and abuse virtually inescapable if one looks at television, listens to the radio, or reads a newspaper or newsmagazine. (It makes one ever more grateful that The Christian Science Monitor and Monitor Radio, the broadcast service of The Christian Science Monitor, are havens of sanity.)
One element of great concern that deserves everyone's considered thought is the argument that individuals cannot be held responsible for their actions. Psychiatric theories are being used in courts to claim that the perpetrators of heinous crimes are actually victims that deserve our sympathy. Most of the public is not taken in. Yet when these efforts are an attempt to excuse guilt and avoid the inevitable punishment sin brings upon itself, they are dangerous. They do not produce a more humane society, but tend to build a tolerance for crime, which would lead to a far worse state of affairs than now exists. Society is liable to conclude that it is not possible to discern between right and wrong. And the influence of all this on youth and on many others is serious.
The first violent crime recorded in the Bible is Cain's murder of his brother Abel. When Cain was confronted with his crime, his defense was "Am I my brother's keeper?" (Gen. 4:9). It is the nature of sin to deny its own guilt and responsibility for its actions. It is spiritual sense which reveals that progress requires that sin be exposed, guilt be admitted and expiated until it—and the thoughts that lead to sin—are fully destroyed.
Enjoy 1 free Sentinel article or audio program each month, including content from 1898 to today.
from the Editors
Sandra M. Justad
Frustration melted and life renewed
Hugh Pendexter III
The embrace of true fatherliness
Beulah M. Roegge with contributions from Robert L. T. Holcomb
Environmental tragedy is not inevitable
The question of vice
Richard C. Bergenheim
Class instruction in Christian Science: it's primary
Barbara M. Vining
Lora Taylor Gray
It happened during a short bus tour—one night I had nightmare...
Evelyn P. Jensen
One morning as I was getting ready to go to work, a friend...
Nellie Whiteside with contributions from Albert E. Whiteside
I often visit a friend who has two cats
Ruth P. Denison
"Are we really grateful for the good already received?...
Barbara A. Muench