We want things to “make sense.” We attempt to force people, decisions, and incidents into simplistic categories of “black” and “white”; “appropriate” and “inappropriate”; “abuse” and “care.”

But then we read the most authoritative and active account of history and we find that people, decisions, and incidents are complicated, messy, and mysterious.

For instance, once upon a time there was a slave named Joe. Joe was appointed as the manager of a wealthy man’s household (e.g. think Charles Carson or Elsie Hughes from Downton Abbey). Joe was BOTH a manager and a slave; and as such he was a sitting duck for being accused of abuse. Which happened. Subsequently, Joe was thrown into prison. While in prison, Joe had the opportunity to practice dream interpretation. Have you ever attempted dream interpretation? Certainly you’ve had dreams, and undoubtedly you’ve been bewildered by your dreams. Whatever your experience with dreams happens to be, the point is …they are complicated, messy, and perplexing. So Joe’s performing dream interpretations, and he’s so proficient at it that he gets promoted to the second highest political position in the country wherein he’s been enslaved and imprisoned. This means Joe manages the sorcerers, enchanters, and magicians of the country. Joe sincerely believes that many of the sorcerers, enchanters, and magicians have been ensnared by the forces of evil; but he nevertheless manages them and patiently endures their evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness, believing that God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will (e.g. think of how Dumbledore interacts with Draco Malfoy and even Tom Riddle).


Once upon a time there was a baby “thrown” into the Nile. A princess, who’s father had legislated the abortion of the baby, adopted the child. The child grew up amongst the aforementioned sorcerers and magicians. The child played with the children of these enchanters; and the child was educated alongside the future generation of magicians. The child was raised as a prince in this confusing climate. The child grew into a man who fought for the freedom of slaves, but the slaves held him in contempt. He was a reject. He was a failure. He ran away and married the daughter of a Midianite priest. Many years later, this man reluctantly returned to the land of his rejection and failure, and he did battle with the aforementioned sorcerers and magicians.


Once upon a time there as a lad named Dan. Dan and his friends were exiles in an oppressive and tyrannical country. They were indoctrinated in the ways of magic, sorcery, and enchantments (e.g. think Hogwarts). Dan and his buddies explicitly rebelled against certain portions of the curriculum, but by the time convocation rolled around they graduated magna cum laute! And subsequently, Dan was promoted to the position of headmaster of Hogwarts. Dan believed that many of the sorcerers, enchanters, and magicians under his authority were ensnared by the forces of evil; but he nevertheless managed them and patiently endured their evil.