Long before Moses was given the law by God on Mount Sinai, God had established rules for the ultimate safety and happiness of man, just as any loving parent does. In the Garden of Eden, it was simple: “You may freely eat of every tree of the garden; 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 die.” Simple. Everything Adam and Eve could need or want was provided them. By going against the word of God and eating of the forbidden fruit, they sinned, and death became a part of the human experience.
Genesis 3:1-6 “Now the serpent was more cunning than any other wild creature that the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, ‘Did God say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree of the garden?’ And the woman said to the serpent, ‘We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden; but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’ But the serpent said to the woman, ‘You will not die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.’ So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate; and she also gave some to her husband, and he ate.”
Genesis 3:7-14 “Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves aprons. And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. But the Lord God called to the man, and said to him, ‘Where are you?’ And he said, ‘I heard the sound of thee in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.’ He said, ‘Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?’ The man said, ‘The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate.’ Then the Lord God said to the woman, ‘What is this that you have done?’ The woman said, ‘The serpent beguiled me, and I ate.’”
See how immediately Adam tries to make it be God’s fault by saying: “the woman that you gave me”, and then shifts to Eve by saying: “she gave it to me.” Eve goes straight to blaming the serpent, saying: “The serpent beguiled me.” They both knew they had gone against God and done wrong; that’s why they “covered their nakedness”, attempting to hide the shame of their wrongdoing. Then they went straight to blaming someone else rather than owning it themselves.
Humankind is no different all these thousands of years later. Think of the child who hides the broken vase (or whatever) from his parents, and when it is discovered, blames his brother, sister, the dog; or people who blame their life situation on their parents, the government, the rich, the poor, immigrants, their lack of education, where they grew up, what happened to them when they were young (rape, incest, bullying, abuse), and even God.
Too few people today are willing to honestly look at themselves and acknowledge that they are the captain of their own ship, the one who steers their life destiny onto the rocks of destruction, or into the still waters. Our life course is directed by our relationship with God which begins with the humility and willingness to admit that we are estranged from Him because of our wrongs—not because of anything He has done—and by asking for His forgiveness.
1 John:6-10 “If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not live according to the truth; but if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just, and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.”