Who’s to Blame?

I have one brother, Taylor, and he is younger.  And by that I mean that he is always wrong… especially when faced with a situation of parental wrath.  Some of you may think that being the baby in the family is the best thing to be, and that the baby always gets spoiled.  Those of you who think this way have not been in a two-child home: a situation that, by some natural force not yet known to science, results in one wiser, more mature, older sibling, and one immature, pestering, trouble-causing, younger sibling, who is always to blame.

Now, to be fair, I must qualify the actual effects of this natural law of which I have spoken: the fact that the younger sibling is always at fault is not his fault.  Though he may always be rightly blamed in cases of in-home misconduct, it is really not his fault; he was born as the younger sibling.  No, the true fault lies not with the one at fault, but with the parents.  It is entirely due to their irresponsible parental planning that a two-child environment was created, and, thus, a younger brother who is always to blame.

Note to parents (especially mine): I do not blame you at all…really.  This is entirely my younger brother’s idea.

Have you noticed yet that our society has a problem with blame?  (And by “society” I mean everyone but me.)  The problem is not in assigning blame.  We will blame anyone and everyone for our misfortunes and misconduct.  The problem is in taking the blame.

I am not talking about the kind of taking-of-blame that the world makes out to be so honorable: the situation in which one person has done something wrong or humiliating, but another, entirely innocent person steps in to take the blame.  Only one person in history has ever been authorized to do such a thing, and He didn’t lie about it…it was made very clear that we were at fault, but that He would take our punishment for us (John 1:29; Isaiah 53:5).

I am talking about the kind of taking-of-blame that God requires of us in order to be His children: the confession of 1John 1:9.  The word “confession” in this passage comes from a Greek term that literally means, “to say the same thing.”  In other words, confession is saying the same thing as God, that we are sinners in need of grace and forgiveness.  God wants us to take the blame, to own it, and then to rely on Him for our salvation and innocence.  And not just generally, either, but in specific situations, when we know we are in the wrong.

On that note: I’m sorry, Taylor, for what I wrote about you; and also, Mom and Dad, I shouldn’t have said those things about you…but it’s not my fault…I was born this way.


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