Do you remember being at school, the teacher is out of the class with some of the naughty kids making a noise … then suddenly the classroom door starts to open and there is deathly silence! The teacher asks who made the noise. No one owns up. The teacher calls out three boys, accusing them of being the rowdy ones. Instead of the boys either accepting guilt or remaining silence, they each point to the others saying … “Miss, it’s him and him,” pointing to the other two. What they did not know was that the corridor windows were high and open for airflow. Being large, they acted as a mirror. The teacher stood under one window and saw exactly who the noise makers were and told them so. Is it not so amazing that even as we become adults, we have this tendency of putting the blame for things on others, even if we are unaware that we have been caught out?
Ge 3:8 Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden. 9 But the LORD God called to the man, “Where are you?” 10 He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.” 11 And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?” 12 The man said, “The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.” 13 Then the LORD God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?” The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”
God knows exactly where we are all the time. God knew what they did and God knew where they were, even though they hid. When God called out to man asking where he was, Adam needed to respond. He realized he was caught out.
(1) God’s call … “Where are you?” As we have said, God knew where Adam was. What God was doing, was letting Adam know He knew where he was.
(2) Adam’s response … “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.” He speaks a half-truth here. He admits he is naked and in hiding but he does not acknowledge his sin … breaking the Probationary Command. He heard God in the Garden and hid, why? No because of his sin. Rather because of his nakedness! Adam tried to cover up his sin with nakedness. This is sin’s response to being found out … half-truths and deceit. As soon as we try to cover up our sin with half-truths and deceit we act like Adam did. You have heard the saying … “Tell the truth and shame the devil.” We cannot cover up our sin, no matter how clever we are. There is no ingenious method to cover up sin. We are not cleverer than God.
(3) Equality promised, yet not received. The devil in the form of the serpent promised Eve she would be like God should she eat of the forbidden fruit. Adam followed her believing this lie. They thought they would be free of God and be His equals only to realize they would never be free of God. God visited them in the Garden. God was not done with them. He has a creation purpose for them and would accomplish His intention for man. My friend, whether a person is elect or not does not remove the fact that God intended that person to be alive in the flesh on this earth. He has a purpose for everyone, whether realized or not. Irrespective how far we move away from God’s will, He shall cause us to return to His intended purpose and will for our lives. Christians need to be very grateful and thankful for this. Although at thirteen years old I knew God’s will for my life, I ran from Him like a Jonah did, but in His time He came and rescued me from wickedness, restoring me to walk in His will. Whoever you are, God shall get you, yet the sooner you respond the better for yourself and everyone around you. Look at the damage Eve caused her husband and her husband the race. Running from God, we do the same.
(4) God’s response to Adam’s nakedness excuse.
Ge 3:11 “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”
Do you see God’s approach? It is to deal with Adam’s sin. Nakedness was only a symptom of his sin! Before God’s voice was the voice of love, friendship, companionship and fellowship. Now it had changed! Now it brought fear! Not that God was aggressive … He remained loving and kind … but His language changed. He pointed to the root of Adam’s nakedness. Try as we may, we can sugar coat our sin before God … but He knows! Look at God’s second question … it is, put another way … “Did you break the Probationary Command?” “I told you not to eat from that tree and warned you of the consequences.” It’s not that God did not know what Adam did. He wanted Adam to acknowledge his sin. It is the same with us. Just because in Christ we are pardoned of all sin does not mean we are not responsible and accountable for sins after conversion. He requires we confess and repent. In so doing we are telling God we are responsible for our sin and must be held accountable. How can a relationship continue unless we have cleared the relational barrier … sin?
(5) Blame shifting. Aren’t we experts at blaming others? We started as toddlers and this progresses to us being children, then teeny boppers and teenagers and sadly we even do it now that we are adults. Instead of accepting guilt … instead of being adult … we blame shift. Look at where we get it from:
Ge 3:12 The man said, “The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.” 13 Then the LORD God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?” The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”
In response to God …
(1) Adam blames God. “The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.” The complete sentence is true but he will not accept guilt. Did God issue the Probationary Command to Eve or to Adam? It was to Adam … yet his leadership skills fall apart. He being the head starts to crumble. He refuses to accept responsibility. He won’t acknowledge accountability. He blames God because God gave him the woman. It’s God’s fault. If God had not given him the woman he would not have broken the Command. Did Eve force Adam? Did she threaten him? Or did he willingly eat the fruit without any resistance? Did you see the two kids here? The one stealing the cookies and giving to the other. Both were warned against stealing … yet both ate. Who was to blame? Both!
(2) Eve blames the serpent. To God’s question … “What is this you have done?” … Eve responds … “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.” God is loving and kind … yet like Adam, Eve refuses to acknowledge guilt and blames the serpent. What she said was true but she refused to be responsible and accountable. The serpent so deceived her she was unable to uphold God’s good Command. These verses are staggeringly true of each one of us. We sin and try to blame others … or at least something else. It might be circumstances, peer pressure, pressure from the boss, marital conflict, sexual dysfunction in the marriage, the speeding ticket … it’s endless. Friend … God requires us to be adult believers and acknowledge our sin by being accountable and then taking responsibility. I cannot say things would have turn out differently for Adam and Eve if they took responsibility and acknowledged personal guilt … but I know that when we do, God is:
Ps 86:5 You are forgiving and good, O Lord, abounding in love to all who call to you.
We have an advocate, ready to plead our case before the Throne of Grace and Mercy.
1Jn 2:1 But if anybody does sin, we have one who speaks to the Father in our defense—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One.
Father, graciously help us to admit our sin immediately and seek pardon and cleansing to maintain a right relationship with Yourself. Amen.