6-Week Series: Against All Odds

Sermons

Summary: God is love. He disciplines His children. Many believe that means He ‘punishes,’or ‘scolds’ or ‘spanks’ with severe means in the best eternal interests of the Born-Again Christian.

The Blame God Game first started in the Garden of Eden when God commanded Adam to “work it and take care of it.” He then told Adam that he was “free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it, you will surely die" (Gen 2:15-17 NIV).

God brought all the living creatures to Adam to name, but none of them were suitable as a helper for him, so God formed the women Eve. Undoubtedly, at some point, Adam had passed on God’s instructions about eating from the tree of the knowledge of Good and Evil to Eve (See Gen 2:20-25).

As the infamous story goes, Eve chose not to believe God’s word and allowed herself to be beguiled by the serpent. She then ate of the tree, and Adam ultimately joined in. At the moment they ate of the fruit their eyes “were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves. Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden.”

God, fully aware of what had happened, “called to the man, "Where are you?" Adam answered, "I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid." God responded, "Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?" Adam became the first person to play the “Blame God Game” when he told God it was actually His fault that he ate of the tree, "The woman you put here with me — she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it" (Gen 3:8-12 NIV).

Since that day humans have been playing the Blame God Game, in one form or another. From the beginning of time on Earth, there have been countless natural and human-made disasters so horrendous that they have caused grief and suffering beyond belief. Every human on Earth has experienced suffering to one extent or another. It may have been through quiet tears shed in the silence of the night as they reflected on the wounds inflicted by another or an overwhelming experience they went through.

When tragedy happens, the first reaction is usually to ask an angry “Why?” Sadly, when people do suffer, the response is often, "It is not fair, I do not deserve this!” A loved one is brutalized - a child is abused - a natural disaster destroys whole cities - a family is wiped out in a terrible accident - a marriage breaks apart or disease takes hold of someone, and it is easy for people to quickly blame God for tragedy and calamity as they cry out in agony, "Why did you do this to me?"

Others, too afraid to be angry at God for fear of appearing faithless, play the Blame God Game when they indirectly accuse Him of causing their suffering by saying such things as; "It was God’s will”- "God allowed it" - “God is testing me” - “Everything happens for a reason”- “It was meant to be”- “It was fate”- “It was their time,” etc.

I have learned that casting blame upon God is one way a person attempts to justify their unwillingness to trust Him in (and through) everything because they are actually afraid of Him.

There are those who have had a loved one die, or had tragedy befall them while they were living a rebellious life, and have thought; "God is punishing me."

Two soldiers, who are Christians, face each other on the battlefield as members of opposing armies. Both pray for victory, only one army wins the fight. The one who has suffered defeat cries out ‘why?’ to God and the other thanks God for winning the battle. Whose side is God on - the winning side or the losing side? The answer is that God is on the side of both Christians and all He asks is to be trusted in the midst of struggle.

Some have said that natural disasters and acts of war are God’s judgment against a city or a country because of their rebellion and sin. A phrase often heard when immorality is exposed in a city or town is; “If God does not do something about (insert name/place here) He will have to apologize to Sodom and Gomorrah!”

The truth is, God promised that if He found just ten righteous people, He would not destroy those cities (Gen 18:32). It is hard to comprehend that there aren’t at least ten ‘righteous’ people in every city in the world. The Bible tells us that Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed by their “pride, laziness, and gluttony” (Ezek 16:49 NLT). If that is the criteria for sending natural disasters as judgment, then there wouldn’t be one city or town left standing anywhere on the planet! As populations increase so will sin and its effects because more sinners equal more sin!

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