M. Night Shyamalan’s 2004 movie, The Village, described the struggle to create a “perfect” community in a fallen world (The Village, directed by M. Night Shyamalan [Burbank, CA: Touchstone Pictures, 2004], DVD). The movie described a puritanical-like village set during the eighteenth century. There are clear moral boundaries, respect, no crime, and an Amish-like innocence to life. However, we eventually learn that the village is not an eighteenth-century community, but an isolated social experiment set in contemporary society. The elders of this community each carry a story of how evil in the world has changed their life. They eventually created this community as a society better than the one that hurt them. For them sin/evil could be controlled and forgotten through constructing a community not corrupted by the modern world. The younger generation of the village did not know about the outside world, and that helped maintain their “innocence”—or so they thought. Even though the village grew and there was little doubt of its peaceful nature, one of their young men would try to kill another man. Because of this character’s jealousy, an assault is committed in what seems to be a “perfect” community. One can only imagine the shock for the village. They thought they had rid themselves of the evils of society and created a peaceful community, but in the end, the village never managed to escape evil and violence. Where is sin located? In the human heart. James says that evil and sin comes from our internal desires and thoughts (James 1:14). Sin is not something that is out there in the fallen world, but something that is in me.
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