Jack Campbell, The Hidden Masters of Marandur (The Pillars of Reality, #2), quoted: “The road my elders dictate is a narrow one, and I no longer believe it to be the road to wisdom. I choose my own road. I choose to do the right thing, as you call it. I would not choose another companion for that road, and should you choose to walk that road with me, it would be..,”—the freedom of choice and its consequences.
If worth and worship are in God’s design, brokenness and selfishness are part of the consequence. Why did we look away from God’s love? Because we made a free choice. We terminated our relationship with Him. It is the question that demands an explanation.
“Did God really say that?” Doubt. Precisely when did we sever our relationship with God and humanity. Has God made such a prohibition? Hearing Eve’s response that if the prohibition is violated, death will result, the tempter presented his challenge: “You will not surely die.” Moreover, finally came the bait: “For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
The same three temptations were used in the wilderness with Jesus, except that fully understanding whom he was dealing with, the tempter camouflaged the temptations. However, the progression from doubting God’s promise to autonomy, and, finally, to the offer of one’s kingdom apart from God’s purposes is the same pattern of seduction. The tempter’s formula never changes, just the entry point. The gift of freedom that God has given to each of us has resulted in the abuse of trust.
It is essential to understand that God’s purpose for us was always a perfect fellowship with Him. Just as water is to the body, the presence of God is to the soul. In freely choosing to violate His law, we forfeited the consummate fulfillment of our spiritual longing.
Presence, relationship, holiness, trust, beauty, goodness, peace—all were present in the relationship between God and humanity at creation. According to our discretion, by playing God and redefining good and evil, we introduced into the human spirit disobedience, absence, severance, distrust, evil, and restlessness.
We want to hold God accountable to our notion of good, but we want to do away with the notion of evil and be accountable to nobody. We use our freedom to try to free ourselves from the very One who gives us our freedom. We want the gift without the Giver. The symptom of evil remains—suffering, but we expunge the cause of evil, our responsibility.
By changing the meta-narrative of God’s story, we have sought to change the narrative in our own lives, and the result is, in one word: broken. We may call it independence or autonomy or coming of age or postmodern or progressive or political correctness. However, in reality, we are broken. Renaming something does not change its essence. The Bible calls it ‘sin’. Moreover, pain is that constant reminder of our brokenness.
Sin is changing the purpose of God for our lives and becoming self-serving. Pertains to all matters with which we entrusted. Whether time, money, words, commitments, relationships, or stewardship, we are given the freedom and responsibility to honor those particulars consistently with our God-given purpose. Humanity has redefined God’s word. His word was specific, but we have scrambled it up, thinking we know better.
There is a purpose to live, and sin is the violation of that purpose. The starting point of dealing with pain is understanding and accepting that there is a purpose to our life and mine. We are not just thrust into existence indiscriminately; instead, we are, as a result of this, the divine will of our Creator God. What is life’s purpose? The ultimate purpose of God for us is communion with Him. When Augustine said, “You have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in thee,” is what he was relating.
ROMANS 6:23(ESV)-For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Vhrist Jesus our Lord