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October 17, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“And He said, ‘Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?’”—Genesis 3:11 (NKJV)
The aftermath of the fall is incredibly insightful! When we see the way Adam and his wife react after they’d first fallen, we see so many insidious patterns that tendril outward into the whole of humanity. There’s something painfully familiar about the unfolding tragedy recorded for us. We see a bit of ourselves, even hear a bit of ourselves, echoing out of this story.
This is never truer than when God pointblank asks the man and woman if they had eaten from the tree that He commanded them not to. Of course, God knew exactly what had happened, but He poses the question for their benefit, not His. Knowing the gnawing sense of guilt and shame that they were now wrestling with, God is giving them the opportunity to confess and repent of their sin to Him. Watch what happens instead: “Then the man said, ‘The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate.’ And the Lord God said to the woman, ‘What is this you have done?’ The woman said, ‘The serpent deceived me, and I ate’” (Genesis 3:12–13 NKJV).
Instead of admitting their guilt to God, Adam deflects responsibility by blaming his wife for giving him the fruit. Now, Adam knew full well what he should have done regardless of what his wife did. But rather than confess that, he blames her. And not just her! If you look closely you see that Adam is also blaming God, Himself. He says, “The woman whom You gave to be with me . . .” In other words, “God if you hadn’t have given her to me in the first place than none of this would have happened!” Wow!
Now look what the woman does when questioned. Instead of taking full responsibility, she blames the serpent! As a side note, husbands should give heed to the fact that Adam’s example of blaming others was followed by his wife. Husbands are to set the spiritual tone for their households because their example will be followed!
Sin’s nature is such that it will cause us to deflect and defer personal responsibility. It will lead us to blame others rather than ourselves. God stands ready to forgive and cleanse us the moment we confess that we have sinned (1 John 1:9). But our attitude needs to be that we, and we alone, have sinned rather than pinning the blame on someone or something else.
DIG: What pattern emerges in the wake of sin?
DISCOVER: How does this pattern play out in your own life? What’s the remedy?
DO: If you have any unconfessed sin or areas in your life where you’ve shifted the blame to someone else, ask the Lord and the person whom you’re blaming to forgive you.
Pastor Dan Hickling serves our online community, also known as the Calvary Chapel Online Campus. He and his wife Becky have been married for 22 years and have two children, Lauren and Danny. Both Dan and Becky have been part of the CCFL church family for 22 years and have served in full time ministry for 20 of those years.