The concept of sin is inextricably woven into the Christian tradition, and relatedly, into Judaism. But the word has fallen on hard times in recent years, perhaps due to its negative connotation. Usage of “sin” has declined precipitously in the English-speaking world since the mid-20th century.
What do Americans think the word “sin” means?
Why do people avoid speaking “sin?”
And how might we understand “sin” in a life-giving way?
I devoted an entire chapter of “Learning to Speak God from Scratch” to wrestling with these questions, but I wanted to go further. So I went down to Times Square to interview strangers about it, and their answers were revealing.