Don’t Play the Blame Game 8/23/98

Genesis 3:1-7
Page 4 Come Alive Bible

Jesus Christ said, “You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.”

Later, before Pilate the inquisitor asked, “What is truth?” (John 18:38). There should be no criticism of Pilate asking the question. The lament is he didn’t stay around to get the answer.

To the believer the Bible is distilled truth. It is the objective truth revealed by God. As such it becomes the standard of faith and practice of followers of Christ.

John Calvin said of the Bible, “It obtains the same complete credit and authority with believers, when they are satisfied of its divine origin, as if they heard the very words pronounced by God Himself.”

Most persons know the part of a verse which says, “Man shall not live by bread alone…” However, many don’t know the rest of the verse which says, “…but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God” (Matthew 4: 4).

The Greek word for our word “inspiration,” THEOPNEUSTOS, means “breathed out by God.” Every word proceeds from the mouth of God.

The first question asked in the Bible related to the validity, authority, and reliability of God’s Word: “Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the woman, ‘Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden…” (Genesis 3:1).

Loss of confidence in the authority of the Bible has caused a loss of respect for all authority. Without its absolute truths to guide us we establish our own self as authority.

II Peter 2: 16 – 21 indicates how reliable God’s Word really is.

Verse 16 states it does not consist of “cunningly devised fables.”

Reference is made to being “eyewitnesses of His [Christ] majesty.” Have you ever thought how wonderful it would have been to have seen Christ in action.

In a court of law a witness under oath who says, “Yes, your honor I was there and saw what happened” is considered a creditable witness. Peter and others there with him were creditable eyewitnesses.

Verse 17 reveals God said, “This is my beloved Son in Whom I am well pleased.” Peter said “We heard this voice.” In a court of law a sworn witness who says, “Yes, your honor I was there and I heard it when it was said…” is considered a creditable witness.

Verse 19 refers to a more creditable witness than an eye or ear witness. We have “the prophetic word made more sure…” That is a reference to the Bible.

The text goes on to tell how we got the Bible: “prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.”

My friend Zig Ziegler said, “A perfect God would not have any trouble producing a perfect Bible.”

Confidence in God’s word is elemental to spiritual stability. If you don’t believe Genesis 1: 1 you can’t believe anything else, Believe that and you can believe all else. There is a new scholarly book out entitled, The Theory of Everything which underscores the concept of creation from the perspective of science. The Christian scientific community was tardy in gleaning evidence to support creation having accepted it by faith. Now faith is being joined by volumes of creditable scientific evidence. Regardless of what concept one holds of origins it must be by faith. For a matter to be considered scientifically creditable it must meet two tests. It must be:
1. Observable. No one saw creation.
2. Repeatable. No one can replicate creation.

Counterfeit concepts of origins continue to crop up. A relatively new group claiming 40,000 adherents showed up on Miami’s chic South Beach recently to raise funds for a new embassy. The embassy is for aliens from our galaxy but not our solar system. The aliens called Elohim have promised the cults leader they will come to earth if provided an embassy. They would like to visit earth to examine their creating. According to the groups leader these aliens created human beings in their laboratories. So far the group has raised over $7 million for the embassy.

Satan has to be subtle to pull that one off.

“Now the serpent was more subtle” (Genesis 3:1) that is, clever, smart.

We should never feel we are clever enough to match wits with the devil. He is the fourth ranking super power in the universe. Therefore, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding” (Proverbs 3:5).

“But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ” (II Corinthians 11:3).

Every generation has to defend itself from counterfeit religions. To help encourage our diligence to the subtlety of Satan it is revealed he often deceives by “transforming himself into an angel of light” (II Corinthians 11: 14). Such ones often represent themselves as “super Christians” knowing more than anyone because of a fuller revelation.

Note what God said: “but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die” (Genesis 2:17).

ADDED SOME: “ye shall not touch it.” God never said that. They could have hung an old tier by a rope and made a swing in the tree and that would not have violated the command. They could have built a tree house in it, but they could not eat of it.

The Bible’s plus is the basis of most cults.

ALTERED SOME: She changed God’s “surely” to a “maybe” (“lest ye die”).

OMITTED SOME: She left out, “thou shalt surely die.”

Satan began by planting a doubt about God’s word followed by a denial resulting in a delusion: “You shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.”

How very subtle this was. Until then they had known only good. Now Satan presented evil as being as good or better than good.

BODY: “saw that the tree was good for food”

SOUL: An aesthetic appeal, “pleasant to the eye”

SPIRITUAL: “A tree to be desired to make one wise”

In salvation these 3 steps are reversed.

There is the immediate justification of the spirit.

The progressive sanctification of the soul.

The ultimate glorification of the body.

Once Adam and Eve ate of the tree in the midst of the garden they began to play the blame game. Adam said, “the woman you gave me she…” He blamed not only “the woman” but God for giving her to him.

Eve responded, “the serpent he tricked me.”

When you foul-up, goof-off, or sin take the hit. Accept the blame. Members of our society have become master players of the blame game.

A teen recently shot a friend and blamed Celine Dion for singing the theme song from the “Titanic.” He said every time he heard it he was moved to violence.

A student snatched $10.00 from the hand of a student waiting in the lunch room line and ran. When caught the student said, “It was her fault, she shouldn’t have been holding it out.”

Locally a student was arrested for buying marijuana. When arrested his mother said it wasn’t his fault the person shouldn’t have been there selling it.

The German soccer team lost to Croatia in the World Cup. A member of the German team blamed the Chancellor for the loss saying he advocated the creation of the nation of Croatia and if he had not there would not have been such a nation and they would not have lost.

Adam said,”the woman,” the woman said, “the serpent.” The serpent looked the other way.

HEAD: He hid from God. He had a wrong concept of God.

Often it is said of a well educated person involved in a cult, “How can such a brilliant person believe that?”

Before Satan’s fall he was an angel known as Lucifer. He was “full of wisdom” (Ezek. 28:12). Next to God he was the most brilliant being in the universe. As a fallen angel he retained the highest of all created intelligence. Though he retained that wisdom it was now warped and perverted. Intelligence is no guarantee of faith. Some of the greatest people of faith have been people of great intelligence.

Johan Kepler the founder of physical astronomy discovered the laws of planetary motion and demonstrated the heliocentricity of the solar system was a man of great faith. He wrote:

“Since we astronomers are priests of the highest God in regard to the book of nature, it befits us to be thoughtful, not of the glory of our minds, but rather, above all else, of the glory of God.”

Francis Bacon the man responsible for the establishment of what is known as the “scientific method,” a devout believer of the Bible wrote: “There are two books laid before us to study, to prevent us from falling into error; first, the volume of Scriptures, which reveal the will of God; then the volume of the Creatures, which expresses His power.”

Blaise Pascal the great mathematician established the science of hydrostatics and laid the foundation for differential calculus was a man of great faith. He was also a brilliant philosopher and wrote: “How can anyone lose who chooses to become a Christian? If, when he dies, there turns out to be no God and his faith was in vain, he has lost nothing — in fact he has been happier in life than his nonbelieving friends. If, however, there is a God and a heaven and hell, then he had gained heaven and his skeptical friends will have lost everything in hell.”

Churches in scientific communities such as Huntsville, Alabama, Houston, Texas, and the area around Cape Canaveral are populated with thousands of scientists of great intellect and faith.

Teddy Roosevelt speaking of the evil within persons said an ignorant man may steal from a boxcar. Educate him and he will steal the railroad. Intellectual brilliance is influenced by sin.

HEART: “The heart is ‘deceitful about all things, and desperately wicked'” (Jeremiah 17:9). Satan’s deception causes a wrong concept of God. When God came looking for Adam and Eve after their sin they thought God wanted to destroy them, that He hated them. For the first time after their sin they feared God. Until then theirs was a rewarding fellowship with God.

HANDS: Went out and sewed leaves together in an attempt to cover the evidence of their sin. By this means they sought to make themselves acceptable to God. They, by their works, sought God’s approval. Every system of religion based on works salvation is in keeping with this false concept. Every attempt to make ones self acceptable to God is a counterfeit religion based on the false concept of salvation by works. Ours is a salvation that works, but it is not by works.

SALVATION IS A GIFT – God provided skins as a covering.