Until Justification, We Think Satan is Right, by David Bishop
What God knows, said that friendly little snake in the garden, is is that God has created something that has the potential to become just like Him. Satan said, “you can be like God.”
It has always been interesting to me that Adam and Eve did not stop believing the lie after they rebelled. They continued in their belief that the serpent was right. In fact, as far as Adam was concerned, getting kicked out of the garden was just one more piece of evidence that the serpent was right.
God was trying to keep him down, trying to keep him from becoming just like Him. When questioned as to what he had done, Adam’s response was to answer back to God, “What, me? You’ve got it wrong there, God. It wasn’t me, I’m perfect, I’m just like You. It was her, the woman, which might I remind You, is the same one You gave to me. If it’s anyone’s fault here, it’s Yours.” (Genesis 3:12)
From that first act of rebellion is spawned all other acts of rebellion, because all acts of rebellion against God are built upon the same premise – the conviction that God is trying to keep me from becoming like Him.
We are all, men and women alike, born with this conviction. We are all born with a distrust for God. We all emerge from the womb convinced that we can be just like God, but that God will try to keep us from becoming just like Him. We are all born convinced that with enough time and enough free exercise of our free will, we can eventually wrestle godhood from Him. This is the very reason why so many are convinced that they can believe themselves into salvation.
The apostle Paul confronts this belief head on in Romans 3:10-18. There he delivers the most shattering bit of news my flesh could ever had heard. He tells me in Romans 3 that I was born worthless, void of righteousness, with no desire to know God or understand Him; with no love for God.
Truly was I born under the sign of stupid. We all were. Many of us still are stupid. Since we were all born worthless, void of righteousness, with no desire to know God or understand Him, then how is it possible that we could at the same time suddenly be righteousness? How can it be possible that we suddenly develop a desire to know God and to understand and love Him?
I ask this, because those who believe their faith is what saves them are saying exactly this, that even though they were born void of righteousness, they can somehow perform Christianity, at least enough to perform faith, which thus “accepts” the fact that “Jesus” died for them. This performance of accepting supposedly then makes them acceptable to God.
It all comes down to this matter of distrust. We were born with a distrust for God. God says we were born worthless, with no desire to know Him or believe Him. What do we as rebels do with this? We turn right around and say, I don’t believe you, God. We say, I believe I can indeed be righteous, I can indeed believe You, I can indeed love You.
As crazy and ironic as it sounds, we say to Him, even if we don’t have the epistemological self-consciousness to know that we are saying it: all I have to do is put my faith in You, and then You’ll see how wrong You are about me not being able to.