Next, Mr. Camdey (by now my beloved mentor) discussed sin and the consequences of its existence in humanity. I had many questions for him, and he answered them all with a twinkle in his eyes. Upon the close of our discussion, he informed me, “You begin to question your own beliefs, as many do when faced with truth.”
“In every man and woman, child or otherwise, there exists a seed of sin. It is implanted so deep into the heart of humanity that it will never come out, at least not while we are upon this earth.” Pacing the length of the sitting room, Mr. Camdey began. “Now sin was not always a part of us. Once, at the dawn of the Creation, we were free from sin, and we did not know sin. Adam and Eve, the only two humans who tasted paradise on earth, were created without sin— holy and pure. They walked with God, communing with Him in perfect union.”
“How can man walk with God?” I asked skeptically. “Do you mean to say that he literally trod the ground beside them?”
Mr. Camdey cast me a patronizing yet compassionate glance. “I do not know, Mr. Tamwit. Certainly, the first man and woman came into contact with Him, but it could be allegorical in the sense that He communed with them or literal in which He did indeed walk beside them.”
“Humph.” I groused, but I bent to the parchment nonetheless.
Mr. Camdey grinned boyishly and continued, eyes alight with the flame of passion. “Well of course, after Adam and Eve ate the fruit, committing the First Sin, they were banished from the Garden of Eden. But even worse, God withdrew from them. Before, there was perfect communion; now, there was only a vast void between the Creator and the created. You can imagine the anguish the two experienced. Or then again, perhaps you cannot.” He waved a bony finger in the air, and I speculated on my strange mentor’s frail appearance. I knew now he was anything but.
“Now, make no mistake, God wants to be with us. We are His children, and any decent Father would want to be with His children. But it is completely against his nature to be with sin, and sin is in us. Therefore, God cannot be with us.”
I looked up. “You sounded quite logical there. Was that perhaps a syllogism?”
Mr. Camdey grinned. “Indeed, good sir. I am pleased you saw that. Are you a logician, by any chance?”
“No, but any man with common sense has some small measure of logic. Even though I did take a class on logic once. I loathed it from the depths of my soul, but it has proved quite useful.” I replied. I wrote on the parchment:
No sinful things can be with God.
Men are sinful things.
Therefore, no man can be with God.
Mr. Camdey peered over my shoulder. “Aha!” he cried loudly, causing me to jump. I had not seen him come up behind me, and he moved so silently I sometimes mistook him for a cat. An old, bald, and white-haired cat with half-moon glasses. It created an odd picture in my mind. Mr. Camdey examined my work. “Excellent, my boy.” Continuing, he spoke with fiery authority once more. “Sin, you understand, is not from God. Therefore anything in sin is not in God. As we have spoken of previously, the only way to erase the power of sin over us is to accept Jesus. To prove my statement” —here he glanced at me pointedly, for I always insisted that he back everything he said with Scripture— “we look at Romans 8.
‘There is therefore, now, no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the Law of the Spirit of Life has set you free, in Christ Jesus, from the Law of Sin and Death. For God has done what the Law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.’
So now, you know why God cannot be with mankind. He wants to, He loves to, but He is holy and pure, and anything that soils that holiness cannot be in His presence. But of course we know that God has made a way…and that Way is Jesus, Son of God. So now, Mr. Tamwit, you see the wondrous works of God.”