Buried Sin

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#414: “Buried Sin”
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Matthew 18:21-35

21Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, "Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times?"

22Jesus answered, "I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times. 23"Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. 24As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand talents was brought to him. 25Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt. 26"The servant fell on his knees before him. 'Be patient with me,' he begged, 'and I will pay back everything.' 27The servant's master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go. 28"But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii. He grabbed him and began to choke him. 'Pay back what you owe me!' he demanded. 29"His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, 'Be patient with me, and I will pay you back.' 30"But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt. 31When the other servants saw what had happened, they were greatly distressed and went and told their master everything that had happened. 32"Then the master called the servant in. 'You wicked servant,' he said, 'I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. 33Shouldn't you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?' 34In anger his master turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed.

35"This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart."

1 Corinthians 13:7
7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

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Buried Sin

“Buried Sin” is episode #414 of the Adventures in Odyssey audio series. It was written by John Fornof, and originally aired on November 7, 1998.


Jared DeWhite, Dwayne Oswald, and Eugene dig up a mystery when they uncover a long-lost box, which contains the story of a forgotten crime.


Digging in the garden at Whit’s End one day, Dwayne Oswald, Jared DeWhite, and Eugene Meltsner find a buried box. The mysterious box contains a fedora (a hat), a newspaper article from 1921, a note, and something wrapped up. Eugene takes the artifacts to Jack Allen, and they read the note.

In nearly painful detail, the note describes a scene in which a boy accidentally shoots his father's gun and kills John P. Garrison, an innocent man who was walking across the street. When the townspeople start looking for the guilty party, instead of confessing, the boy keeps his secret. His father is sure it could not have been his gun, thinking he had unloaded it days before, so the boy is never suspected. The search for the killer eventually ends, and the mystery shooter grows up and falls in love with Rachel Oswald, the dead man's oldest daughter. Wracked with guilt, he breaks off his engagement, writes the note, and buries it in the box.

As Jack finishes reading, the boys find the gun in the box. They decide to tell the police about what they have discovered and Eugene and the boys make copies of the note. Jared and Dwayne take their copies to the library, where they find that Rachel Garrison, the dead man's daughter, was engaged to Dr. Thomas Newcastle a few years after the crime. They look him up in the phone book and also discover that Charles Oswald eventually married Rachel - Dwayne's great-grandmother. Thomas Newcastle murdered Dwayne’s great-great-grandfather!

The boys go to Dwayne's attic in search of more clues and find a letter from Rachel to Thomas, in which she speaks to him of her new-found faith in Christ, after years of anger over their broken engagement. She urges him to accept Christ and says that now, many years later, she forgives him for the pain he caused her. The boys go to see Thomas "Doc" Newcastle at the retirement home where he lives.

Just as they are telling him about the letter and the box they found, the police arrive. Doc Newcastle is arrested, but put on probation because of his young age at the time of the shooting and his current advanced age. Later, at Whit's End, Jack tells Eugene, Jared and Dwayne that he has been visiting Doc, and that because of his visits and the letter from Dwayne's great-grandmother, he has prayed to accept Christ. To symbolize that he is free, the boys are to bury the box where they found it, open and empty.

Discussion Questions

  1. Thomas Newcastle said that he had "buried his sin". Is our sin ever truly buried?
  2. In her letter, Rachel Oswald said she had spent many years feeling angry and bitter. How did she say that her pain was taken away?
  3. Have you ever done something that you found it hard to own up to?


Heard in episode

Role Voice Actor
Dr. Bowles Pete Reneday
Dwayne Oswald Kris Kachurak
Eugene Meltsner Will Ryan
Jack Allen Alan Young
Jared DeWhite Brandon Gilberstadt
Man in the crowd #1 Bill Myers
Man in the crowd #2 Matt Hurwitz
Man in the crowd #3 Matt Hurwitz
Officer Murphy Pete Reneday
Police Officer Matt Hurwitz
Rachel Oswald Flo Di Re
Dr. Thomas Newcastle (old) Jimmy Weldon
Dr. Thomas Newcastle (young) Matt Hurwitz
Mr. Newcastle Matt Hurwitz

Mentioned in episode

Character Mentioned By
Connie Kendall Jared DeWhite




Jared DeWhite: Wait a second. We're doing all this work for peas?
Eugene Meltsner: Precisely. You will soon enjoy the fruits of your labor.
Dwayne Oswald: Isn't that more like the vegetables of your labor?

Jack Allen: You don't think they'd try to solve this mystery on their own do you?
Eugene Meltsner: Hmmm. Two boys, one with hyper imagination.
Jack Allen: Eugene we have to find those boys. If the man they're looking for is still alive and they find him, who knows what he'll do to them?

Jared DeWhite: Why do I always get stuck doing the dirty work?
Eugene Meltsner: Uh, perhaps because you're so good at it?