Our toddler blamed his bed and bedroom door when he hurt himself on them. He said, “I don’t like door. Not nice.” I have no idea what happened with the door. He probably bumped into it but I was there when he hurt himself on the bed. I warned him not to jump on it but of course, he didn’t listen so he slipped and hurt himself. He was pouting at the bed and saying, “I don’t like bed. Not nice!” If the bed could talk, it would have said, “Well, you shouldn’t have been jumping on me.”
Are we the same way? Do we blame others or things instead of taking responsibility? When a marriage goes sour, do we automatically blame the other person? When God addressed Adam and Eve after they disobeyed Him and ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, they cast the blame on someone else. Adam blamed God and Eve and Eve blamed the serpent.
However, God held each of them responsible for their own actions. Before Adam was told what the consequences of his disobedience would be, God said to him, “Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it’…” (Genesis 3:17). Each of them received judgment deserving of their actions.
King Saul was supposed to attack Amalek and destroy everything they had, the king, people and animals. He was not supposed to spare anyone or anything but Saul spared the king and took the best of the livestock. When Samuel confronted him about what he had done, Saul said, “I have sinned, for I have transgressed the commandment of the LORD and your words, because I feared the people and obeyed their voice” (1 Samuel 15:24).
Initially, Saul did not believe that he had done anything wrong. In fact, he believed that he had obeyed God’s command. He said, “But I have obeyed the voice of the LORD, and gone on the mission on which the LORD sent me, and brought back Agag king of Amalek; I have utterly destroyed the Amalekites. But the people took of the plunder, sheep and oxen, the best of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice to the LORD your God in Gilgal.” This was not true. Verse 9 says: But Saul and the people spared Agag and the best of the sheep, the oxen, the fatlings, the lambs, and all that was good, and were unwilling to utterly destroy them. But everything despised and worthless, that they utterly destroyed. Saul was the king. He was in charge. The people followed him.
Saul disobeyed God and then tried to place the blame on the people. He claimed that he feared them and that was why he obeyed them rather than God. However, God did not hold the people accountable for what happened, He held Saul accountable. As a result of Saul’s disobedience, God rejected him as king.
How many of us blame the Devil when we give into temptation or sin against God? The Devil can tempt us but he cannot force us to do anything. We have the Spirit which is willing to help us but if we give into the flesh which is weak then we have no one but ourselves to blame. And no one can blame God when they sin either. The Bible clearly states: “Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone” (James 1:13). The people who do terrible things in God’s name are deluding themselves. They are responsible for their actions not God!
We need to stop casting blame on others and take responsibility for our own actions.