Gen.3:9-12 - Then the LORD God called to the man, and said to him, "Where are you?" 10 He said, "I heard the sound of You in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid myself." 11 And He said, "Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from 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 from the tree, and I ate." NASU
You Have Been Caught Red Handed.
Adam was caught by God doing what he wasn't supposed to do "eating of the forbidden fruit". We have all been caught red handed by God doing what we weren't supposed to be doing in some way. For the scriptures say, "… for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." (Rom.3:23)
How would you respond if caught doing something you were not supposed to be doing?
The answer depends on the type of person you are. If you are a person of integrity you would be honest and admit that what was done was your fault. You would not follow in the footsteps of Adam and blame anyone else. You would take responsibility for you actions.
Adam The Originator of Blame Shifting
When you have been caught doing something wrong one way to respond is to blame someone else. This means you don't want to take responsibility for your actions.
This is what Adam did. He blamed God and Eve. WOW! Can you imagine the nerve of Adam? He actually blames God for his new problem when he says, "The woman whom YOU gave me…and SHE gave me from the tree…"
Now I don't know how many of us have the nerve to blame God for our problems, but I am fairly certain we have blamed either one of our siblings, classmates, friends or co-workers at one time or another. Why would we blame someone else? The reason is because we have not learned to accept responsibility for our actions.
If He Jumped Off A Bridge Would You Do The Same?
I don't know how many times I tried blame shifting with my parents only to hear them ask me that famous question we have probably all heard, "If he jumped off a bridge would you do the same?" Why did they ask me that question? The reason is they were trying to teach me that we are responsible for our actions.
We probably used that question on our children when we caught them doing something wrong and they followed the age old course of action-Blame Shifting.
What Are The Results Of Blame Shifting?
The first result is the guilty person doesn't accept responsibility for his/her actions and therefore, will never change his/her behavior. Second, you will teach those around you this same type of behavior. As we can see in the next verse Eve says when questioned by God that it was the serpent's fault. Third, the person will never truly repent of their wrongful actions.
Media Sometimes Blames The Wrong Person
Last week race car driver Tony Stewart was in an accident which left a young race car driver named, Kevin Ward Jr., dead. Some people in the media are placing the blame on Tony. Now I am not a Tony Stewart fan, but since this Pump Up is about accepting responsibility, lets put the blame where it belongs for this tragedy.
Kevin should have never gotten out of his car. I am sure he was taught you don't get out of your car unless it is on fire, which it was not. Let's not blame people for that which they are not guilty.
If Kevin wanted to disagree with how Tony was driving then the place to do that was after the race was finished. You can file a complaint with the proper authorities, but if you get out of your car when the race is still being run then you will have to accept responsibility for your actions regardless of how dire they are.
How Then Should We Respond?
If we are caught doing something wrong how then should we respond? We are to be men and women of integrity and admit it when we have been caught doing what we should never have done.
God's word says it this way: 2 Cor. 7:10 - "or the sorrow that is according to the will of God produces a repentance without regret, leading to salvation,…" We should accept responsibility for our actions and repent, which means change our actions.
How should we respond to those we catch not doing what they are supposed to do? Don't allow them to blame shift. Teach them to take responsibility for their actions and this may be in your household, at your place of employment or on your sports team.
One of the greatest lessons we can learn or teach is "accepting responsibility" for our actions.
Think On These:
The most important person to be honest with is you.
The honesty of most politicians has never been questioned. In fact, it has never been mentioned.
Gary A. Serago
Minister of God's Word
Gary A Serago.