Getting caught in the blame game – Part 2

This is a continuation of Getting caught in the blame game – Part 1

CrossThe fact that we are inclined to blame others is an indication of the guilt (sometime legitimate, sometimes illegitimate) or disappointment that seems to be the universal condition.

The Judeo-Christian world view does provide an answer to the question of why humans have a sense of why life should be different than it is. The Bible also provides the answer as to why we feel the need to blame others when things don’t turn out the way we like.

If you go to the Bible, you will find the answer in Genesis Chapter 3, where the first rebellion against God is recorded. If you read this chapter, please note how Adam and Eve responded when confronted with their sin.

Our first forebears tried to blame others for their behavior. Adam blamed Eve; Eve blamed the serpent. When Adam reminded God that Eve was a gift, Adam was essentially blaming God also. We have been blaming others ever since this first sin. We struggle to face up to our own failings and then look to blame others for the mess we find ourselves in.

The problem with blaming is that the person who blames others does not understand that many of his wounds are self inflicted. It is not until we stop blaming others that we begin to see that we cause many of our own problems. I understand that the human psyche is complex and that there is difficulty in understanding what prompts us to blame. We do irrational things when we act out of our woundedness. Yet, we must face up to our own failings.

I’m not saying that any of this is easy. Our desire to blame others is inherent to our humanity. Yet growth requires that we face this tendency and work toward healing.

Not only does the Bible provide a diagnosis of the problem, it also provides the solution to the problem of blaming others. Scripture indicates that the antidote to guilt is righteousness. Furthermore, the Bible tells us that this righteousness is not something that we can generate on our own. The Apostle Paul tells us in Romans 1:16-17:

16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “But the righteous man shall live by faith.”

Paul tells us that the gospel is the good news of how to be relieved of the guilt associated with our failures. The gospel contains the power to bring that righteousness to those who believe it.

Later in the book of Romans Paul pens the freeing words, “Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1). In the absence of condemnation, we should have the confidence to get our guilt out in the open and get it dealt with. We know we will be forgiven, so why do we hang on to the guilt? Why do we continue to blame?