Many things that don’t appear bad have the potential to be.

My wife and I love being grandparents. I had always heard how wonderful grandparenting was, but I had to experience it for myself to understand the pleasure. If you saw us interacting with our grandchildren, you would assume we thought they were incapable of wrong.

Our first grandchild always woke up with a smile. He was never cranky unless he was fighting the nap he needed. He loved to help us with things around the house. And everywhere we took him, he drew a crowd. He even had a following of students at the school where I teach. But all his positive characteristics were overshadowed by one negative: he had the potential to be bad—and as he got older, he proved it.

If God is the Creator of all things as believers propose—yet sin exists—does that mean he created sin? Some say yes. Others disagree.

Apparently, sin made its presence known in heaven before it arrived on earth. Lucifer, an angel created by God, intended to assume God’s position. “For you said to yourself, ‘I will ascend to heaven and set my throne above God’s stars…I will climb to the highest heavens and be like the Most High’” (Isaiah 14:13-14 NLT). After God removed him and his followers from heaven, Lucifer tried his hand on the earthlings God had created. Eve was an easy target, and Adam followed willingly. The rest of the story unfolds every day before our eyes.

Rather than maintaining that God created sin, I choose to say he created the possibility of sin. Evidently, he wanted even the supernatural beings known as angels to have freedom of choice—as well as the humans he planned to place on earth. No robots in his heavenly realm or on his earthly kingdom.

Freedom of choice is what makes us human. The ability to embrace our Creator or snub our noses at him. I don’t fault God for the evil on earth. I blame myself—and everyone else for choosing to go our own way rather than God’s. When we do, sin results…and it’s not God’s fault.

Photo by Colton Kresser on Unsplash