Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Abi and Original Sin....

Back in October I shared some of the reading and pondering I was doing -- especially from Peck and Jacobsen.  I have been reading through thoroughly cleaned cHesed Glasses....

Peck, you may remember, postulated that he believed "original sin" was the human tendency toward taking the easy way rather that the right way.  He called that laziness.  I think there is a great deal of merit in serious pondering of the meaning and implications along those lines.  I have benefited from such pondering....

Jacobsen talks about the Fall being a result of the human tendency toward independence -- rejecting God's place as Creator and guide -- in order to be able to judge what is good or evil for themselves.  Wayne's walk through the Bible in his project called The Jesus Lens expands on this idea.  I recently finished listening to all three parts (over eight hours worth) at his website.  It is a worthwhile endeavor -- each segment is around 20 minutes long.  [You can listen, watch video, follow along with PowerPoint here for free, or you can order the entire series on DVD.]

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Now, I have known for a very long time that I am something of a synthesizer.  I take in lots of information from what seems to be very different spheres and find connections and patterns in them.  I think my recent pondering has resulted in another synthesis ... of Peck and Jacobsen and Abi (and all that means).

Original Sin as laziness/independence are two sides of the same, er, coin.  They both are ways to circumvent the work of relationship -- the extending of oneself for the best interest of the other.  Let's take a closer look:

Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden were given freedom to eat anything -- except the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.  In their Innocence they walked with God and trusted in his provision for them.  All was well ... for a while. 

We don't know what interpersonal challenges may have been developing between Adam and Eve ... but we know that they were together when the Serpent challenged Eve's understanding of the edict.  We know that Adam didn't move to support Eve or defend her from this attack.  Maybe he was waiting to see if she dropped dead when she bit into the fruit ... we do not know.  We can infer that there was some kind of struggle between them in the relationship ... and perhaps it revolved around a desire to be independent from each other a little?  We don't know that, either.

Notice how little we know.  This should be a clue for us:  there is so much more to God's story than we can know or understand -- we just are not ABLE to understand it all.  But that's okay ... if we are willing to trust that God knows it all and will make sure that everything turns out okay in the end.  That does not mean that we will get what we want or that we will be healthy, wealthy or wise ... it just means that God's purposes in Creation will be realized.  Trusting God is always the right thing to do.  But, um, it is not especially easy because we do not want to depend on God.  We want to be independent -- to do our own thing.

This is where the laziness comes in.

It seems that it is easier to do our own thing that to wait for God.  He is SOOOO SLOW!  Have you noticed?  Impatience is a form of laziness ... and this is why children are so good at being impatient:  they have no sense of past or future -- only NOW!  Waiting is the most horrible awful thing to ask my kids to do.

But it gets worse!  Not only do we have to wait for God ... we have to cooperate with other people! 

Adam was there first -- he got to pick out all the animal names by himself.  Easy peasey!  But once Eve arrived on the scene, there was another opinion -- which required a "discussion."  UGH!  Then there is the listening and thinking and honoring and considering ... it is so much easier just to do what I want to do, isn't it?  Really?

So, we get power struggles and other "irritations" that erode relationships.  And all of a sudden we are not particularly looking out for the other's best interest.  We're looking out for our self -- independently.

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Yeah ... I think lazy independence looks like a pretty good take on the core human issue.  We want what we want -- as easy as possible.  The sad irony is that it is always more work to do it our way, in the end.  It is always easier to do it right the first time than to fix it....

Which leads me to the other "shock" statement Wayne Jacobsen makes:  humans are just not smart enough to know what is best.  Pondering that has totally transformed the way I approach prayer.  But that is another topic for another post at another time.  Be patient!  ;^)

There is a reason that one of the big recurring themes in the Scriptures is the concept of already/not yet.  There are things that God is doing ... some that we can already see and know and experience.  But there are many more that are not yet fully revealed.  The fullness of time, as it were, has not yet come.

Relax.  Take a deep breath.  God does, in fact, know what They are doing.  Watch and wait ... you never know when they're going to be ready to do something amazing ... and if you're waiting and watching patiently, you will get to be in on the deal.  How sweet is that?

Ponder that yourself ... how does independence trip you up?  How does relational laziness, particularly, interfere with your ability to trust God with your life ... or that of your spouse ... or your kids ... or your parents ... or your extended family ... or the Kingdom where Jesus Christ is Lord and King? 

What do you think?

Be blessed....


Lee Wyatt said...

I have concluded that sloth and pride go hand in hand in the Gen.3 story of the fall. Adam and Eve are charged to protect and nurture the Garden but the presence of the serpent already suggests they have failed through inattention to protect it as they should have. If they had not allowed or failed to notice the serpent's entrance, the fatal conversation in which it stirred them up to pridefully seizing control of their lives might never have happened. In this sense, then, sloth or spiritual laziness, may be said to be the "original sin."

PLTK said...

Thanks. An interesting article. I enjoyed the perspective on Adam and Eve being taken in part because of their lack of support for each other.

AbiSomeone said...

Thank you, Lee Wyatt and PLTK, for visiting and sharing your thoughts. Be blessed....Abi

Janet Woodlock said...

I guess it all boils down to a failue of love, doesn't it? We don't love God enough to honor His command. We don't love one another enough to honor them. The nations at war, the hostile marriage, the neglected child... it's all a failure to love like the Three in One who IS love.