Authority, Accountability, neither works well unless there is a reasonable amount of responsibility that is driving these two attributes. God has given us both individually and collectively a sense of responsibility. Quite reasonable to say that this particular thing, responsibility, differs in intensity among we humans. God at that moment in the garden gave the human race a guide to their responsibilities: Genesis 28 God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”
We shouldn’t look at that verse as a to do list but rather a very plain listing of what was expected, you might say, our earthly responsibilities. Responsibility can and often does mean different things to different people. In Matthew 25: 14-30 we have the story of the master who was to be traveling for a while choose to give three of his servants each a different number of these bags for them to keep safe until he returned. He had wisely thought it best not to carry such wealth while on the road. Sometimes this biblical account leaves me wondering. I find no instruction as to what they were to do with this wealth that had been entrusted to them other than keeping it safe and they would be held accountable to him because they and they alone were responsible for it. There are many scriptures where responsibility is given by God to certain individuals and it is often followed by accountability. Here is a twist I didn’t see coming when I started this weeks blog, responsibility can also be a corporate thing. Groups, organizations, even churches have corporate responsibilities to their members and their communities. Be a good time here to look at the definition of responsibility.the state of being the person who caused something to happen
: a duty or task that you are required or expected to do
: something that you should do because it is morally right, legally required, etc.
One of the more common aspects of responsibility is the nature of a man to deny responsibility for his failures or transgressions . This usually takes the path of blaming others when we fall short of the goal. Of course one of the best known “blame games” in the Bible took place in the garden. Adam blamed Eve, and ultimately even the Lord, for the sin in which he found himself. Of course Eve blamed the serpent. The scripture is full of examples of God’s people blaming others for many different things. Sarah was not happy with Abraham when Hagar bore him a son, even though it was her advice to Abraham that initiated that event. Esau sold his birthright to his brother Jacob then complained that Jacob had deceived him to get the birthright. Arron made the golden calf but would not own up to it and Pilate washing his hands of any responsibility for Jesus’ death.
Paul addresses the issue of accountability in the Book of Romans. He also established that God is righteous and his judgment is based on truth (Romans 2: 2). We all, each one of us will be individually held accountable before God. (Romans 14:12)
Paul reminds us in Romans 1:25:
25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.
The Israelites had the law, in some ways they were privileged but with that privilege came a greater responsibility. (Romans 2:9)
There are none among us that are righteous, we have all sinned. Jews, Gentiles, all must come to Christ and repent.
Wrapping this series up I will leave you with these thoughts. It is my opinion that of the three responsibility is the most important and here is why. Authority is granted or given, Accountability is imposed……responsibility is an inherent trait which when all is said and done will determine how we use that authority and how we hold others accountable.
Thanks for sticking with us through this series. Hope to see you back in the pew next week.
Life is Good