I admire Robyn Jacobs’ enthusiasm about her faith and that she gets up in front of her class to give a report about why she is a Christian. But when you present yourself as being knowledgeable about a particular topic, it comes with at least two responsibilities. The first is to actually be quite familiar with the topic, Christianity in Robyn’s case. The second is to be honest about the limitations in your knowledge. In short, don’t make stuff up. It’s understandable that Robyn finds it difficult to answer questions from Oscar. She’s only a kid after all. She knows certain Christian phrases, but can’t explain herself to an outsider. In her frustration she assumes Oscar’s persistent questioning should be ignored because he’s only trying to make fun of her. She misses that Oscar is being genuine and asking honest questions.
Oscar asks why Jesus had to die to take away people’s sins. I’m guessing at some point Robyn was probably told that the wages of sin is death, but because she doesn’t regularly read the Bible she can’t recall this verse off the top of her head to answer Oscar. She had two choices at this point. The first is to admit she doesn’t know, and either consult the Bible or a more mature Christian. The second is to cover up her lack of knowledge and make something up. Robyn claims the question doesn’t have an answer and must be taken by faith. But, thankfully, no one is fooled by Robyn’s false answer, not even herself. Deep down she knows she isn’t being honest, because she gets annoyed and a little afraid when she hears Oscar is going to ask Mr. Whittaker the same question. Robyn suspects Whit will contradict her answer.
Robyn shouldn’t feel too bad. She makes the same mistake a lot of Christians can make. When we encounter a difficult question they can’t immediately answer, we may jump directly to faith. Faith, the catch-all term which solves everything and paves over all uncertainties. There’s no sense in looking up answers in the Bible if nothing really deserves a proper well-thought-out explanation. There are of course plenty things that are unexplainable and that Christians should take by faith, but it’s disrespectful to people of faith to throw around the term so lightly.
When Connie appears, we find her reciting scriptures from memory. She became a Christian only seven episodes ago and it’s good to see her taking it seriously. This episode is all about the importance of Bible study, so it makes sense to get Connie’s perspective, since she just started to read the Bible recently and is benefiting a lot from it. I wish we could have heard more about Connie and skipped to the Bible study at the end right away instead of dwelling so long on Robyn’s failed attempts to read the Bible in the morning or before bed. That whole falling asleep sequence made me want to fall asleep. Her repeated failures to study the Bible felt predictable and uninteresting. Regardless, up until that point the episode was very good. Overall, I found this episode to be helpful and most of it to be engaging. It gets 4 out of 5 stars.