Original Sin

The Apple

Tim Mossholder

Producer(s): 
February 5, 2017

A garden, a tree, an apple and a serpent.  The story of Adam and Eve is as old as sin.  But it’s a lot more than a Bible story. The doctrine of original sin shaped Christianity but also left its mark on everything from gun control to how we vote. In this episode, we consider the impact of original sin on politics, capitalism, psychology and beyond.

  1. Original Sin at the Heart of All Political Divides

    Robert Leonard, a radio news director in Pella, Iowa, argues that behind all the issues we argue about today there's an even deeper, or more fundamental divide. One between people who believe in original sin and those who don't.

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  2. The Imprint of Original Sin on Western Culture

    When you start to pay attention, you can see messages about salvation, grace, good and evil in the most secular places. In a new book called "Born Bad," historian James Boyce argues that the concept of original sin is the foundation of Western thought.

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  3. A Blessing in the Garden

    Danielle Shroyer is a young Christian theologian and former pastor who offers a rebuke to the doctrine of original sin; to her, what happened in the Garden of Eden is a story of original blessing.

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  4. When Sin Bears Fruit

    Laird Hunt has written what is really three stories wrapped around each other. The first is something that really happened:  A famous lynching in Marion, Indiana in the summer of 1930. The second is the story of the song, “Strange Fruit,” which was inspired by that lynching. And the third is a new novel, which begins on that terrible day. It’s called “The Evening Road.” In this piece, Hunt tells us how he came to write it.

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