Confession or Blame
July 22, 2013
Confession or Blame
6 So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate.
7 Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.
8 And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden.
9 But the Lord God called to the man and said to him, “Where are you?"
10 And he said, “I heard the sound of you in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked, and I hid myself.”
11 He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?”
12 The man said, “The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate.”
13 Then the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this that you have done?” The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate."
Adam and Eve have done the one and only thing God told them not to do. The guilt of their disobedience is immediate. We know this by their response to the situation. They sew clothes for themselves out of fig leaves and hid out from God. Thus the fig leaf has come to be forever known as that which covers something shameful. (The picture in read is a casting of the fig leaf that Michelangelo used to cover the privates on his statue of David.)
The important thing to remember here is that Adam and Eve actually attempted to hid from God. They now know that they are naked in every way - not just physically. They know that they have made a poor choice and are most likely terrified and rightly so. When I was raising my two daughters, I had a living example of what happens when we know there has been a transgression. Bethany, my younger daughter's first sentence was, "Hannah did it." (Hannah was her older sister.) Even as toddlers we know that we don't want to be "in trouble." When God inquires of them about where they are, their first response is to lay blame on anyone but themselves. Adam is so bold as to blame Eve AND even God. "The woman YOU gave me . . ." When God turns to Eve, she blames the serpent. I have often wondered what would have happened if Adam had immediately confessed the sin and begged God's forgiveness. But neither of them do that. The finger pointing began and we still do it today.
Sin is so incredibly destructive that we usually involve ourselves in even more sin in an attempt to dig ourselves out. But that is simply not possible. We can never make up for our sin by ourselves. We are in constant need of a Savior. As we try to justify our wicked behaviors by ourselves we only make things worse. Tomorrow's reading will include God's gracious response to this disobedience. God's plan kicks in right when we needed it.