Thursday, May 2, 2013

The Blame Game

As Israel was suffering under the oppressive hand of the Babylonians, God called the prophet Ezekiel to speak to His chosen people.  They had become an idolatrous nation, actively worshiping gods other than Yahweh.  Ezekiel was instructed to warn them of further impending judgment which was soon to befall them if they persisted in their wicked ways.  Strangely enough, the Jews argued that their present suffering was not due to their own misguided behavior, but was in fact the result of the sins of their forefathers!  They put the blame on their ancestors, refusing to take any responsibility and recognize their own unfaithfulness and need for repentance.

Shift forward a couple of thousand years, and things have not changed all that much.  Despite the notion that mankind is so much more advanced, it is fairly obvious our modern pop psychology can be reduced to this threefold concept: blame someone else; blame anyone else; it’s the other guy’s fault!  I have spent a good deal of time counseling people the past 20 years or so, and it has been quite an education in human behavior.  The most common thread I have encountered in these sessions is the propensity to “point the finger” at someone else as being the progenitor of the problem.

Having been a parent, and now a grandparent, it has always amazed me how this blame-game is displayed even early in childhood.  Ever notice how your children will always blame the other guy for starting their quarrels?  Ironically, the first instance of this phenomenon is recorded in the Bible, and goes all the way back to the Garden of Eden when Adam blamed Eve (and even had the audacity to blame God in an off-hand manner!), Eve blamed the serpent, but the serpent didn’t have a leg to stand on! (Yes, that’s a joke). 

We blame our failures on parents, teachers, brothers, sisters, churches, God, and lack of money, opportunity or education.  Scientists now even use the excuse that genetic composition causes many of the less than desirable behaviors afflicting mankind, essentially relieving us of any culpability for these actions as we have no control over our predisposition toward certain things. 

Truth is that when sin entered into the human race it did indeed damage us all (Romans 5:12).  As Christians, we recognize the Biblical truth we are all basically flawed, and one of the evidences of this fact is the tendency of our fallen nature to attempt to place blame any where but where it belongs. . . . on us!  However, equally true is the fact the Bible is replete with warnings that each one of us will be held individually accountable for our own actions.  And although we are all affected by numerous and various influences, the first step toward spiritual and emotional healing is to accept personal accountability for our individual behavior, and seek forgiveness in those areas where we have failed, rather then seeking someone or something to blame.  Once we have done this, God will be pleased.
See ya Sunday!

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