Blame and the Liberal Destruction of the Gospel
The misery of the human condition demands fault from someone. It insists upon the placing of blame. The struggle is an affront to the natural minds of men.
Surely I’m not supposed to be miserable.
I deserve to be happy.
There must be something wrong.
And as such, someone must be at fault. My condition or situation must be the fault of another. This thought pattern underscores a sickening and rampant disease foundational to certain prevalent contemporary ideologies.
Few things decimate the soul of the Gospel more than the notion of blame.
My liberal cousin and I recently engaged in a rather one-sided exchange. The crux of the matter was personal responsibility. He was railing against our healthcare system and the poor health of Americans and at one point listed the conditions that prove we have a substandard healthcare system in comparison to our enlightened European brethren. The system was at fault for all of our ailments.
Well, I had the audacity to suggest that perhaps obesity (one of the conditions he noted) might be the result of the lifestyle choices of our citizens and not necessarily the fault of the system. Was our substandard healthcare system truly to blame for the obesity of Americans?
You would’ve thought that I’d insulted JFK. My liberal cousin exploded in anger for daring to place fault on the hapless obese person. “Blame the victim! Just like you people always do.” He impugned my “Christianity”, mocked me as a hypocrite, and snarled that Jesus would have never behaved in such a manner, blaming the victim. I was stunned by the fury of his response.
Yet, his response highlighted the actual issue. The ideology of blame is the ideology of Satan.
The first sin was disobedience followed closely by blame. In the Garden, Adam stood idle as Eve betrayed God’s commands and partook of the forbidden fruit. Without protest, he followed suit. Though Eve initiated the transgression, it is the man that God confronts. Adam’s response is telling,
“The woman whom you gave to be with me [emphasis mine], she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate.” (Genesis 3:12)
The man blamed the woman for his transgression and ultimately blamed God as he withered under the scrutiny of accountability.
God, you gave me this woman.
It is her fault that I partook and ultimately, your fault.
Blame ushered sin into a previously uncorrupted existence and humanity has languished under its yoke ever since. “Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned.” (Romans 5:12) Sin distorts and twists the hearts of all men and mars creation itself. (Romans 3:23, 8:20-21) Sin places men squarely under the wrath of a righteous and holy God and demands a ransom, a payment. And our sin is directly a function of our sinful hearts, nothing else. God rightly holds us accountable for that sin.
Yet, we exist in a nation of people who deny accountability and teach others, including their children, to deny accountability. Our nation is filled to capacity with people seeking to blame someone for their struggle. It is the system that keeps me down. It is another race that oppresses me. I cannot flourish because of the actions of another. Be it political leaders or systems or people groups – all of a man’s trials must be traced to another.
Americans revel in victimhood and as a direct result, exalt entitlement. Because I am a victim, I therefore deserve something to make amends for my victimhood. The alternative is just too unsettling to consider.
Even worse, false teachers posing as pastors reinforce this satanic attitude. Prosperity teachers convince people that they deserve things. Still others proclaim a liberation theology, a false social gospel that Jesus came to free people from political bondage. All of this serves to mask the fundamental truth of man’s existence.
The only thing I deserve is eternal condemnation.
The entirety of the Law exists as a schoolmaster to teach this fundamental truth. (Galatians 3:24,25) The heart is wicked, who can understand it. (Jeremiah 17:9) All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. No one seeks after God. There is no one righteous, not one. (Romans 3)
Absent this truth, the unmerited favor that is the sweetest grace of God morphs into something much different. The truth that crushes men’s hearts is that though we deserve nothing more than condemnation, God dispatched His Son to the cross as a substitutionary atonement for that same sin. As such, I must come to terms with my sin before I may ever approach the throne of grace.
The language of victimhood holds no merit in the economy of God. The gospel of blame is anathema to that which truly saves. The Gospel of Jesus Christ demands that we own our sin. How may we repent of that to which we lay no claim?
Author - Founder
Soldier, Pastor, Author – Bradford stays busy, with his wife Ami, raising their 9 children, serving the nation, pastoring, preaching, and writing books (#3 is due out October ’17).
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