AL QAEDA’S RED WAGON Gary D. Erickson A number of photos have been released of bin Laden’s compound after the raid that took his life. The world is mystified, not only by the logistics of this death raid, but what we are learning about this man and his family. ABC News said, “Outside of the house, there was more evidence that a family had been living at the home comfortably. Toys are scattered in the backyard—even a discarded red wagon” (May 3, 2011; http://abclocal.go.com/kabc/story?section=news/world_news&id=8109052). It is ironic that a mass murderer, a man who was responsible for killing thousands of innocent people, had time and the heart for a child. It is hard to imagine this despicable man pulling a child in a red wagon around his home. We view him as being the epitome of evil and having no conscience. This is the mystery of humankind’s falleness, and at the same time, our divinity. We are fallen people, yet created in God’s image. There is an evil in humanity, and at the same time, there is a vestige of goodness that comes from God. Osama bin Laden provides an extreme example of this paradox. According to the Washington Post (5/3/11, and quoting from the Kuwaiti paper that published the will, Al-Anbaa), “Bin Laden instructs his children, of which he is believed to have fathered between 12 and 24, not to continue to wage the holy war.” Osama bin Laden wanted a better life for his children. What is most heinous sin in the world? Some may debate with me on this point, but I believe it is the sin of not loving our children. I think Jesus may agree. The disciple asked Jesus who was the greatest in the kingdom: “And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them, And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me. But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea” (Matthew 18:2-6).