19 July 2013

The Devil Made Me

In times of transgression against the word and will of God, the Christian is sometimes quick to cry foul: 

The Devil made me do it!

Well, we don't exactly use those words. We say things that will garner sympathy. If only. I was weak. I was stressed-out. I'm too tired. She was asking for it.

Or, we make an argument that casts the shame of guilt upon another: It's her fault. He made me. 

Let's consider the account of Adam and Eve. It's a perfect example of how we often respond to temptation, and how we should respond when we fall into sin.

You know the story. God creates a perfect garden for Adam and Eve. All the organic fruits and vegetables they can eat! Except one. One tree is off limits, and God makes that very clear. In fact, when Satan first tempts Eve, she repeats God's words to him:

“We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.’” (Genesis 3:2-3)
She knew God's will, and she knew God's word. Yet, instead of fleeing to safety, she kept company with the Serpent, and willing walked right into his trap.

And, Adam? The man who walked with God in the cool of evening? He did just what his lady told him to do. Forget about God's instructions. She says it's good! Just like that, God's word and will were ignored for a lousy piece of fruit.

Sadly, we are still dealing with temptation the same way Adam and Eve did. We ignore the very same words of God. His will is clear, yet, into Satan's trap we go.

And, we still try to blame someone else. Just like Adam and Eve. 
When God came to the Garden and saw what had happened, He questioned Adam first. Head of the household. Priest of the home. 

"The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate." (Genesis 3:12)

In other words: She made me. And, You gave her to me, so it's Your fault, too!

Can you imagine the Lord's frustration at that moment? The Bible says He turns to Eve, and asks her: "What have you done?" I can see her now, fluttering her eyelashes.

“The serpent deceived me.” (Genesis 3:13)

In other words? The Devil made me do it---it's his fault!

What follows in Chapter 3 is God's first demonstration of compassion and accountability. The Lord does not condemn them. He judges them. And, He provides atonement for their sin. Blood is shed, and they receive mercy.

Yes, Eve had been deceived, but she was accountable for her choices. She willingly entertained the Devil's company. 

Yes, Adam was under Eve's influence*, but he willingly took the fruit.

Being tempted is not a sin, but entertaining temptation will almost always lead to sin. That's the part that gets messy for some folks. They don't always recognize they are being tempted. 

Or, they give into a "lesser" sin, not understanding the machinations of Satan. A little lust, a little booze, a few puffs, a touch, a flash. We think we've got everything under control...

                ...I'll just watch for a minute.   
                ...It's just fun & games.
                ...I won't go any further.
                ...I'll just have one.
                ...We're only friends.

It's quite a gamble to count on one's own will power.


We sin daily. We are vulnerable, subject to temptation. And, each little place of compromise leads us deeper into a chasm that separates us more and more from God's perfect will.

The Lord does not leave us without a defense, though. He has not only given the Holy Spirit, but He promises to always provides a way of escape.

"No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it." (I Corinthians 10:13)

If it's too late to resist, we've all ready taken a bite, then we come into the light like Adam and Eve finally did, confessing what they had done. Repentance is the only way back into God's will.

We only have to be willing to allow the Holy Spirit to show us our sin, and be accountable for what we have done. 

I can't help but wonder what would have happened if instead of running away from God, trying to hide their sin and shame from the Lord, Adam and Eve had instead cried out to Him for mercy.

It's never too late to find out.

* This is the topic of another blog post that is presently in the progress. It was an important and powerful lesson the Lord taught during the worst days of my life.


  1. *waves (miss the eprops that allowed me to just say I read it but I have nothing to say :P )

    1. Thanks for the comment---reminded me of a feature I had unselected.

    2. Hmmm...I just realized I do not have your personal blog here. Hey, speaking of your blog...I will message you on FB with an idea.


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