At the age of two, my daughter invented two imaginary friends. I think they existed solely for the purpose of having someone to blame for her misdeeds. If something was broken or missing, Golcy was responsible. If disobedience was involved, it was most likely Hoohoo’s fault. These two friends seemed to disappear when my daughter turned 3. When I asked where they were, I was informed they had moved to South Georgia. Thankfully those naughty friends never returned.
When Adam and Eve disobeyed, God confronted Adam with two questions, “Who told you that you were naked?” and “Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?” (Genesis 3:11-13).
Adam responded by blaming both Eve and God. “The woman you put here with me—she game me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.” The woman YOU put here. SHE gave me the fruit.” It’s Your fault and her fault.
God asked Eve the question, “What is this you have done?”
Eve resorted to using the same tactic Adam used. She blamed the serpent. “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.” He deceived me so it’s HIS fault.
Neither Adam or Eve admitted their responsibility for choosing to sin. Neither repented.
God always knew the truth yet He gave them the opportunity for honesty and confession. Things could have been entirely different had they chosen nakedness of spirit before God.
It is that moment of blame when not only the perfect connection between man and God became shattered, but also the beautiful oneness between man and his wife was broken.
And so it has continued…the universal tendency to blame someone or something else for our mistakes. “It’s not my fault. He made me do it.” We learn this behavior at a very early age.
The moment Adam and Eve chose Satan as their advisor is the moment they decided to live their lives in rebellion against God. C.S. Lewis put it this way, “Fallen man is not simply an imperfect creature who needs improvement; he is a rebel who must lay down his arms” (Mere Christianity). The “arms” we cling to not only include blaming others for our sin, they include rationalization, denial, and turning our backs on the truth. If we would be honest with ourselves, perhaps we would recognize how damaging and self destructive our flimsy weapons are.
For the one who decides to “lay down his arms,” it is most certainly not because he finally accumulated sufficient knowledge to make the decision. And he didn’t choose devotion to God based upon sight. No, just as we cannot see the wind but can see its powerful effects, we cannot see God. Yet for the discerning, seeking eye, His movement is all round us. We step into faith with an act of honesty about ourselves and a decision to surrender to our God. We surrender our need to understand everything first. We surrender our pride. And then we surrender our will. Absolute surrender. Irrevocable surrender. Blissful surrender. Rewarding surrender.
Our grace filled God makes an exchange. He accepts the surrendered, repentant heart and gives total forgiveness of sin. We calls us His beloved child. And we are welcomed home.
Question to ponder:
When have I blamed God for the sin that resulted when I accepted the world’s temptations?
Have I “laid down my arms?”