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Playing the Blame Game

HST129516 The Fall of Man, 1549 (oil on panel) by Cranach, Lucas the Younger (1515-86); 21.7x17.1 cm; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas, USA; Edith A. and Percy S. Straus Collection; PERMISSION REQUIRED FOR NON EDITORIAL USAGE; German,  out of copyright

PLEASE NOTE: The Bridgeman Art Library works with the owner of this image to clear permission. If you wish to reproduce this image, please inform us so we can clear permission for you.My friend Alan got into his car to go to work and backed into his wife’s car that was parked behind him. Alan got out, went into the house where his wife was showering and yelled, “Way to go! You just wrecked BOTH cars!”

His wife said, “How did I wreck both cars, I’m in the shower?”

He said, “You parked your car right in my blind spot.”

She said, “How can you have a blind spot when you get into your car and mine is clearly behind yours?

Alan, a bit frustrated, fired back, “You just… can!”

Blame is a funny thing. We always want to use it to shift the guilt. People are like scales. Get too much guilt and you have to do something with it.

In the garden of Eden, when Adam and Eve got caught for eating the fruit they all played the blame game. God started with Adam. “Adam, did you eat the fruit?”

Have you ever listened carefully to his response? Sure, he blamed Eve. But in an indirect way, he also blamed God. “It was that woman YOU gave me.”

In other words, none of this would have happened if you hadn’t given me the woman. Way to go God, you just wrecked both cars.

Spotlight turns to Eve. She pointed at the snake. “It was the snake, he made me do it.” The snake slithered away.

We all tend to play the blame game to get rid of guilt. My parents made me this way. Society made me do it. A rough childhood, or a friend or a big brother, or a bad boss or something else. It’s never my fault.

There is a better way to get rid of guilt than blame. Take responsibility. Here’s the magic formula to defuse a difficult situation, “I’m sorry, please forgive me.” It works with people, and it works with God.
Consider Psalm 32:5.

Finally, I confessed all my sins to you
and stopped trying to hide my guilt.
I said to myself, “I will confess my rebellion to the LORD.”
And you forgave me! All my guilt is gone.

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