Book Excerpt 1 from A Brief History of Why: The Meaning of Jesus Christ
By: Donald W. Jones & Christopher Anton
Humans are fallen creatures.
We can be spiritually blind. Our nature is oriented toward sin and disobedience. A Greek word often used is "Apeitheia" or obstinacy. Another Greek word often used is "Parakoe", which means failing or refusing to hear (Hebrews 2:2-3). In the story of the fall of man in the garden of Eden, Adam and Eve chose to not get God's message correct. Eve was told by the serpent, “You won’t surely die” by eating from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Hearing amiss is the precursor to actual disobedience. Failing or refusing to hear God's word is motivated by our own will to be disobedient. We tend to warp God's message into something that can be used as a base for disobedience. Adam and Eve started by doing it their own way. They changed God's message into something more self serving. They removed God from their decision making.
The serpent's temptation included the idea that Eve would be like God if she ate from the tree. This was disobedience to God's command. The first sin is disobedience and the root of that is the desire to be God by not listening to God's voice and doing it your own way. Eve liked the idea of being better than what she was capable of achieving. She was open to the idea of being wiser than she actually was. When satan tempted Jesus with the lure of absolute power, Jesus rebuked satan with scripture. He answered every temptation of the devil with God's word. Jesus followed God's way and used the truth of God's word. Jesus came with a purpose which was not personal ambition.
Too often people will judge God's way by setting themselves and their ideas up higher than God. God is somehow not fair through the eyes of their system. They presume that if God is deficient in their own system, then they do not have to follow God. From there it is easy to start playing God, and to condemn God. This is self-absorbed idolatry.
The fall as described in Genesis illustrates that the core of the matter is in human disobedience to God's commands. The temptation of satan is a continual pull on us to presuppose that we are as good as or better than God. The delusion being that we can do it all ourselves. In 1 Corinthians 10:31 we are told to do everything to the glory of God. Sin never conforms to the glory of God. Following Christ does not free one from sinning (1 John 1:8-10). The requirement for followers of Christ is “to walk in the light” (1 John 1:7). Responding to the light revealed strengthens our fellowship with God. Walking in the light illuminates areas of darkness that need cleansing.