“And the man said, “The woman whom Thou gavest to be with me, she gave me from the tree, and I ate.”
Then the LORD God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?” And the woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate,” Genesis 3:12-13.
The man said that it was the woman’s fault. The woman said that it was the serpent’s fault. Since God put the serpent in the Garden, she was in fact implying that the whole thing was God’s fault. Man has been trying to blame God for his problems ever since. This only leads to a deeper human depravity.
The three major perversions caused by the Fall were:
If man had stopped at any of these points and begun turning back to God, the Fall would not likely have led to the depth of corruption to the human race that it did. If we will stop before this progression has fully developed, and turn to God, it will prevent us from likewise falling into a deeper problem.
When anyone sins, they will usually follow these same steps. First, they become self-centered, which causes them to try to hide, and start blame-shifting. The deeper the corruption, the more difficult it is to be helped out of our problems. The usual procedure for dealing with sin was dramatically demonstrated by President Clinton’s response to the exposure of his affair. First he tried to hide it. Then, in a most interesting television address to the nation about the issue, he tried to actually pin some of the blame on the harassment of the special council. The whole nation seemed to recognize this fallacy with our President, but how often do we recognize it in ourselves?
The Lord does not forgive excuses; He forgives sin. He is always ready to forgive us – if we repent.
To repent is to acknowledge that it is our fault, and we made a mistake. Blame-shifting instead of repentance is to further build the barriers between ourselves and God, and ourselves and others. It takes humility to admit that we were wrong, but God gives His grace to the humble. Genuine humility is genuine repentance.
We can blame our mistakes on other people, or on our environment, but it will never deliver us from the consequences of those mistakes. There is no genuine repentance until we accept the responsibility for our actions. Only genuine repentance results in forgiveness and reconciliation, with God and men.
In recent history, fallen men have released a seemingly continuous stream of philosophies and psychologies that try to shift the blame for the depravities of man to things such as environment, how we were raised, etc. It is true that these things do have an influence on us, and can have a significant impact on the makeup of our character, but the way out of this maze is not to blame someone else, but to start taking personal responsibility for our problems and failures.
The environment is not the problem. The Lord put man in a perfect environment and he still sinned. If the environment was the problem, then the Lord would have needed to just redeem the environment and not man. The Lord gave authority over the environment to man. When man is redeemed, man will then be able to properly relate to, and change his environment. This is simply a matter of putting the proverbial horse in front of the cart where it belongs.
Practically speaking, we should always view problems with our situation, or environment, and highlight the things that are wrong with us that needs to be changed. Because God’s purpose is to fully redeem and restore us from the consequences of the Fall, we should always first look for the answer to our problems as a needed change in us.
In almost every case, the answer can be summed up in one word, “love.” As we are told in 1 Corinthians 13:8, “Love never fails.” Love will always be found at the root of every solution. If we would love more, it would change most of the situations that we view as our problems.
The Lord began changing the world by loving it enough to die for it. We can also begin changing our world when we begin loving those around us enough to lay down our lives and our self-interests for their sakes. Instead of blame-shifting, let us acknowledge our own sin, taking responsibility for it, and seek the grace of God to love those around us, instead of blaming them for our problems. When we begin to truly love in this way, paradise will begin to return.
~ Pastor Rick Joyner
|Pastor Rick Joyner is the founder and executive director of MorningStar Ministries and Heritage International Ministries and is the Senior Pastor of MorningStar Fellowship Church.|