Question: If my car has a defect or lacks some parts isn’t that the manufacturer’s fault and not mine. Since Adam sinned for lack of wisdom wasn’t God the responsible party since He had not given to Adam the wisdom needed to avoid sin?
Why did He make a car that doesn’t work and then became angry with His own imperfect car? If God wants a perfect creation who does not sin, why doesn’t He create it perfect? If God doesn’t make the creature perfect, why does He blame the creature for the creature’s failure?
Answer: Paul makes a very interesting statement in 1 Timothy 2:14, “Adam was not deceived.”
Let’s think about what happened in the garden. The tempter tells Eve that she will not die if she eats from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil but that God wants to keep her from it because if she eats from it she will become like God, able to determine good and evil for herself. She won’t have to be under God’s control. She’ll be in control. The text says she ate and gave to Adam “who was with her” and he ate.
This not eating from this particular tree was the only prohibition God gave Adam and Eve. He told them that in the day they ate of it they would die. Eve was deceived by the serpent’s arguments, but, according to Paul, Adam was not. So why did Adam eat what was forbidden? He wanted independence from God. He wanted to be able to make the rules. He didn’t want to have to trust God to take care of him, he wanted to trust himself.
Was this a defect in the way God made him? I don’t believe so. How does God give someone a will, the ability to make choices, if He forbids or doesn’t make him able to make any choice? If Adam can’t choose to rebel, as Satan did, then Adam doesn’t really have the ability to choose. So God made the car able to do whatever a car should do, not defective in any way. If the car had lacked a function of cars that cars should have, then it would not have been a true car. If Adam lacked the ability to choose wrong, he would not be a human made in God’s image. He would be something else, more along the lines of the animals that populated the earth.
But given that Adam was a responsible being with a will to make choices of any kind, his choice to reject God’s rule over him was reprehensible. God could not simply say, “Oh, well, no big deal.” As with Satan, there had to be justice. Adam knew how good God had been to him and to Eve. He saw all that God had provided for him in abundance. He saw how God made him a co-ruler by giving him dominion over the earth, naming animals, working the garden. God gave the test of the tree because He needed to see if Adam would freely choose to love and trust Him. All the evidence Adam had said he could trust and love God.
But Adam wanted to be God. Of course, choosing what is right and wrong on your own doesn’t confer deity or godhead on you. Satan lied about that. Adam found that out immediately. He felt shame at his own decision and at his nakedness. He only possessed divine traits in a non-infinite way, in a finite way, and could not really control life as he thought he could. But despite all the evidence we have that this is true, that we don’t really have the power to control life, we persist in trying to.
Adam’s heart is our heart. We fear entrusting our lives to God, worrying that we are doomed in some way if we do. In our hearts we know that is the expectation (Romans 1:18-26) but we prefer to keep things in our own tight little hands. We think we can do a better job ourselves of running our own lives. All the evidence is against that conclusion.