Frank Sinatra had a lot of hit songs in his time, but his biggest hit was probably “My Way.” In the song he reflects back on the life he’s lived and how he lived it on his own terms and made his own rules. Nobody told him what to do. Those sentiments were nothing new when Sinatra recorded the song. They go all the way back to Adam and Eve and are woven into human history ever since.
Genesis 2:15-1715 And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.Gen 3:6-76 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.
We all know what happened to them for their disobedience to God’s command. Their sin brought death into the world, and the curse has been handed down through every generation since. A prime example of this is in the very next generation with their sons, Cain and Abel.
Genesis 4:1-81 And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD.2 And she again bare his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground.3 And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD.4 And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering:5 But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.6 And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen?7 If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.8 And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him.
God had a specific way He wanted the sacrifices to be done, and Abel did his right. Cain decided to do things his own way and it didn’t work. God accepted Abel’s offering and rejected Cain’s. Cain’s sin didn’t end there. He became jealous to the point that he ended up killing his own brother.
Luke 22:47-5147 And while he yet spake, behold a multitude, and he that was called Judas, one of the twelve, went before them, and drew near unto Jesus to kiss him.48 But Jesus said unto him, Judas, betrayest thou the Son of man with a kiss?49 When they which were about him saw what would follow, they said unto him, Lord, shall we smite with the sword?50 And one of them smote the servant of the high priest, and cut off his right ear.51 And Jesus answered and said, Suffer ye thus far. And he touched his ear, and healed him.
According to John’s account of this story it was Simon Peter who cut off the servant’s ear. While Peter was doing what he thought was right by trying to defend Jesus, he was still in the wrong. Jesus knew what was going to happen to Him once these people arrested Him. He knew of the torture and humiliation He would suffer, and the painful death on the cross that awaited Him. He knew that if He didn’t go through all of that, then there would be no way we could be saved from the penalty of our sins and spend eternity with Him in Heaven. Sometimes what seems like the right thing to do does more harm than good to the cause of Christ.
Proverbs There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.