Genesis 3:9 – “But the Lord God said to the man, “Where are you?”  “To the woman He said, “What is this you have done?”

Genesis 4:9, (To Cain), – “Where is your brother Abel?  Why is your face downcast, (vs. 6), “What have you done, (vs. 10)?”

These  are only a few questions God has asked mankind through the centuries.  There is another found in I Kings 19.  I would like to think for a moment though, if God is omniscient, which means that He knows everything, then why does He ask such questions of mankind, and what do these questions mean to us?  Do you think God does not know the answers to these questions?  How ludicrous to think that an all-knowing God does not know ahead of time, before He asks these questions, the answers to them.  God always asked these questions in order to help the one to whom He asked the question to know the answer – to know where he was spiritually!

It is very interesting to study the answers of those to whom the questions were asked.  All too often, as human beings, we tend to want to blame someone else or simply not take responsibility for our actions.  Adam said, “The woman you put here with me, she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.”  In other words – “it’s her fault!”  Eve said, “The serpent deceived me and I ate.”  In other words, as Flip Wilson used to say, “The devil made me do it!”  “It’s his fault!”  Cain said, “I don’t know!”  An outright lie.  What made him think he could get away with lying to God?  Far better it would have been for Cain to acknowledge the truth and ask God’s forgiveness and mercy than for him to try to deny what he had done and what he was as a human being.  We often act in the same manner.  When God brings something to our attention in our lives that needs correction or changing, we simply try to blame the problem on someone else or candycoat it over and deny the problem exists at all!  Notice that God did not deny the truth of the answers that Adam and Eve gave to Him.  What they said was true, but neither did it take away from their personal responsibility for their actions.  We often do this today and say, “I am the way I am because of the way I was raised.  Therefore I can’t change because…, (of a host of reasons).”  As I think of Adam, Eve, Cain, and many others in the Bible; As I think of my own reactions to God in the past when He has asked hard questions of me and when I contemplate the reactions of humans to the claims of God on their lives and  think of our answers back to him like those I have just talked about, I am amazed that He puts-up with us at all.  We are always trying His patience.  The Bible says, “Who are you, o man, to talk back to God?”  In Isaiah, chapter seven, the Lord says through the prophet, “If you do not stand firm in your faith, you will not stand at all, (vs. 9b).”  And in verse thirteen, “Then Isaiah said, “Hear now, you house of David!  Is it not enough to try the patience of me?  Will you try the patience of my God also?  Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign;  The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call Him Immanuel.”  This verse was fulfilled by only one person, Jesus Christ!  Take note of the language of Isaiah, chapter eight – “Strong hand – power – warning me not to follow the way of this people.”  Why?  Because it was like a lost car on an interstate highway going the wrong way.  They were on a path which would ultimately lead to destruction.  To those who respect and love God, He is a “sanctuary,” (a place of refuge).  For those who reject Him and do not believe in or care about Him, He is, “a stone, a trap and a snare, (vs. 14).”

What about you?  Is God a sanctuary, (a place of refuge), for you?  Are you “trying His patience,” talking back to Him, making excuses like our first parents or just plain lying to Him like Cain?  Do you believe in the sign He has given to mankind – the gift of salvation through His own son, Jesus Christ, who was born of a virgin?  Never before in all of history has such a thing been done!  No other prophet, so-called, or religious leader, of this, can be said.  Jesus alone, is the way of reconciliation with God!