The devil made me do it.
It was a funny line by one of the funniest men who ever lived. The late Flip Wilson.
Whenever his character “Geraldine” did something wrong or naughty he would exclaim with a shout, “The devil made me do it!”
It became a national expression. It was on t-shirts, bumper stickers, coffee mugs, etc.
It popularized the devil and turned him into a comic celebrity. He became a caricature, a cute little impish creature who brought out the naughty little things people do and made them of no consequence.
After all, what could be easier than doing something wrong and simply blaming it on the devil?
Well, sadly many people already believed that. This just made it more popular to express it.
The fact is, the devil, even the real devil who is a far cry from “Hot Stuff” of the old Casper the Ghost cartoons, never made anyone do anything.
Lucifer. Satan. Beezlebub. Old Scratch. The Liar. The Adversary. The Enemy. The Lord of the Flies. The Dragon. The Serpent.
Eve tried to put the blame on him in the Garden back during the very first sin.
Gen. 3:13 – “And the Lord God said to the woman, What is this you have done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled (cheated, outwitted, and deceived) me, and I ate.”
Or, “The devil made me do it.”
It didn’t wash with God then, and it doesn’t today.
If it were true then it wouldn’t have been sin and we’d all be in the lap of luxury living off the fat of the land.
Instead God leveled the charge and resulting punishment at whom was responsible.
He cursed the serpent, Adam, and Eve. Subsequently all of us too.
No one gets out from underneath the charge of sin. God takes it very serious.
The devil has power. He is sly and slick. He uses coercion and is the best at it.
He cannot however, force anyone to do what they don’t WANT TO DO.
People will often do things they know are wrong (sin properly so called), but feel they have no power to do different. People will also do bad things they really don’t want to do but can’t control the evil desire to do them. People will often feel awful afterward and repent and even swear off doing them again.
Paul explained that vicious cycle in Roman chapter 7.
“Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.” Rom. 7:20
Sin has dwelt in the hearts of every human being who ever lived except Jesus Christ. This is why He is the only way out of it.
The Cross of Christ is the answer to the age old plague of sin.
Before we can change we must stop blaming others and look to Jesus Christ.
He alone has conquered the sin problem in the human race and all who place their trust and faith in Him will be able to live victoriously from acting upon sinful carnal desires.
This makes the difference my friends, of pleasing or offending God. The Cross stands in the gap of eternal life or eternal death.
It’s Jesus. He’s the only Way. He never fails.
Keepin’ it Real,