Thursday, August 1, 2013

Judgement vs. Accountability

The other reason that the statement "Only God Can Judge Me!"  concerns me is that I observe a gross misunderstanding in the difference between judgement and accountability by Christians and non-Christians alike.  Non-Christians use the above phrase to blow off all accountability for their sin. Christians do the same.

The difference is that Christians have acknowledged Jesus Christ as Savior and also should have accepted Him as Lord.  Therefore, they are held to a higher standard and are supposed to help each other keep that standard by holding each other accountable(2 Corinthians 2:12-13).

More than once I have heard a Christian use profanity and then use one of those typical paraphrases of a judgement scripture to satisfy their guilt and keep others of us that this person knew from saying anything about it.  What's worse is that another Christian joined in on that process.  This not only undercuts the accountability process but if non-believers hear this from believers, it may justify their thought processes.

Judgement can mean something as simple as judging in making a decision about the rightness of an action or it can mean handing down a verdict.

Granted, we cannot hand down a guilty verdict regarding someone's eternal destiny because we are not to judge that destiny as no one knows perfectly the condition of a man's heart toward God.  However, as believers we are called to warn each other regarding the observed fruit of perpetual sin in the life of another "believer" and the way it steal's glory from God. Not to mention that this perpetual sin, if committed in an unrepentant manner, is perhaps an indication of the state of one's heart.

Enter accountability. To be accountable, according to Websters, means that you have an obligation or willingness to take responsibility for your actions.  As a Christian we are both obligated to be accountable for our actions and should be willing to be held accountable for our actions.  If you are not then you should "examine your heart to see if you are in the faith"(2 Corinthians 13:5) as mentioned in the introductory post of this series.  The only escape from eternal destruction is a proper fear of the Lord courtesy of a relationship with the only Savior Jesus Christ that manifests itself through the fruit of righteous works.

If you have been following the last few posts, this challenge to "examine yourself" has already been expressed.  I pray that you have been practicing this self-examination and have found that you ARE a believer whom, no matter what sin is present in your life, is most interested, by God's grace alone, in repenting from it and moving in hot pursuit toward a holy life that will bring glory to the Father.

If you find that you have doubts about your salvation or that you are absolutely not a believer and you are not really bothered by that; yet you find that you keep reading my posts for some reason.  That is also God's providence.  Keep reading and we will continue to flesh out the "Good News" of the Gospel and why it is important to your eternity.

Much love in Christ,


1 comment:

  1. Came to this site, looking for affirmation concerning an observation from my own walk with (and sometimes without) Christ.
    Seems to me that the closer we are to the Lord, the more compassion we have for others. Conversely, the further we are from Him, that same compassion is replaced with simple judgement of others.
    This post really puts a fine polish on the importance of self examination, and "checking ourselves" in our walk, so that His light shines, rather than our own "pyrite" version of it.