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Monday, January 9, 2012

Taking Responsibility [1]

It is important that we step up, stand up for people and take responsibility. This is a long-standing societal issue. Many people would like to point fingers at politicians, greedy corporations and claim that they bear full responsibility for the state of our economy and the state of our world. It is a much deeper issue, and for the next few days we are going to talk about it.
First, let’s all get a working definition.
What is responsibility?
  • It is being in a state of accountability. It is the state, fact, or position of being accountable to somebody or for something about a specific thing. Frequently this person that we are accountable is ourselves.
  • We can also be responsible for somebody or something.
  • It is accepting blame when things don’t go well, or the desired or expected outcome is not achieved.
  • It can sometimes mean having the authority to act and to make decisions independently.
Our background story is set in the Garden of Eden, with Adam, Eve and the Serpent.
Our text is: Genesis 3:1–13
“Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”

 The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden,

but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’ ”

“You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman.

“For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it.

Then the eyes of both of them 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.

But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”

He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”

And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”

The man said, “The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.”

Then the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?”

The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.” (NIV)

How quickly things begin to unravel. How easy it is to caste blame in another’s direction. Let us read the story carefully…

  • What went wrong?
  • Who is responsible?
  • And, why is this important in our lives?


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