Reading: Genesis 3:11
After the fall into sin, God made it easy for Adam to present a simple and honest confession of sin. The question “Hast thou eaten …?” is so pointed and precise that it calls for a simple yes or no answer. But depravity had squeezed itself through every fibre of Adam’s being and he could not think right nor answer honestly.
Adam and Eve, rather than facing up to their falling short, tried to excuse their actions. How like our first parents we are and how futile this is for “He that covereth his sins shall not prosper…” (Proverbs 28:13). There are two common mistakes we make when confronted by sin: self-pity and self-preservation.
Adam began with his feelings: “I was afraid.” He attributed his fear to the fact that he was naked. But Adam focuses on the effects of his sin, his nakedness, and not on the source of his sin. How often this happens; sin comes in like a hurricane and uproots our life, leaving us to clean up the debris. But we get so distracted by the debris, we are so preoccupied with the effects of our sin, that we begin to wallow in self-pity: “Oh, this is what has happened to me, look how bad my situation is. Does anyone care how I feel?” There is cold comfort in self-pity.
Another distraction from a direct and candid dealing with sin is self-preservation. We try to preserve self by assigning blame elsewhere. How cruel it makes us! Adam points the finger at the one he loves: “The woman, … she gave me.” How often do we try to preserve our own integrity at the expense of those we love and with the result that we lose peaceful communion with God? How often do we make general confession to escape making specific confessions? Confession of particular sin may be humiliating and sorrowful, but it is a sorrow filled with joy that we have a forgiving Saviour.
“It does not spoil your happiness to confess your sin. The unhappiness is in not making the confession.” C. H. Spurgeon