Sugar Coated Sin Part IV: It Wasn’t Me
Accountability, the word falls rather heavily when it comes to wrongdoing. It is like the pounding of the gavel, loud as well as lingering. Even if others may look upon us with a verdict of innocence, one thing is for sure… we are all guilty whether we acknowledge it or not.
We have been passing the blame since the beginning. When God asked for an admission of truth in the Garden of Eden, both Adam and Eve were quick to cast the blame elsewhere. “I ate, but she gave it to me.” Says Adam. “I ate, but the serpent told me that…” Says Eve.
Genesis 3:8-13 King James Version (KJV)
8 And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden. 9 And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou? 10 And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself. 11 And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat? 12 And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat. 13 And the Lord God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat
Being open and honest when we have wronged someone can be a grueling task. It can be heart-wrenching. It breaks trust, sometimes even costs us. We have no desire to be looked upon in a negative way. Angered, upset, annoyed, impatient, or afraid we feel this desire to justify our actions so as to make them seem a little less bad. We shift some, if not all, the responsibility to another person or the circumstance that “made” us that way.
Heading Them Off At The Pass
I had a few friends once that were at odds with one another. While I loved each, I had made a terrible habit of telling them what the others said about them. Especially when the sailing was a bit murky with them. Instead of simply owning up to things I had done, I had to head off the ones I claimed to love at the pass.
Because of my own fear of rejection along with my own disappointment with them, I threw them under the bus so my own shortcomings might look rather dull in comparison.
Truth is, it hurt a lot more taking this approach. In the end, it not only hurt everyone it cost a number of friendships. Today I look back and can say what I should have been able to then.
- I was not forthcoming about my feelings
- I gossiped
- I let my fears, doubts, and insecurities guide my decisions
- I let my disappointment mediate my thoughts and actions
The truth is: “The enemy tells us if we accept full responsibility for our own choices, we will be plagued with unnecessary guilt. That is not so. It is only by accepting full responsibility for our actions and attitudes that we can ever be fully free from guilt.
~Nancy Leigh Demoss~
No Way Out
There is no way out. When you sin, you have done wrong. There is no erasing it or changing it. However, there is repentance. Admitting the errors of our ways, seeking forgiveness, and making amends by learning from our mistakes is the only way we can ever hope for true joy or happiness.
Others are not to be held accountable for our actions. Likewise, we are not to be held accountable for the actions of others.
Ezekiel 18:19-22 King James Version (KJV)
19 Yet say ye, Why? doth not the son bear the iniquity of the father? When the son hath done that which is lawful and right, and hath kept all my statutes, and hath done them, he shall surely live.
20 The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him.
21 But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die.
22 All his transgressions that he hath committed, they shall not be mentioned unto him: in his righteousness that he hath done he shall live.
We are responsible for our own choices.
Colossians 3:1-17King James Version (KJV)
3 If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.2 Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.3 For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory. 5 Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry: 6 For which things’ sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience: 7 In the which ye also walked some time, when ye lived in them. 8 But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. 9 Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; 10 And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him: 11 Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all. 12 Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; 13 Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. 14 And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness. 15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. 17 And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.