February 27 – Personal Responsibility


  • Deut. 17:14-20
  • Ex. 22:28b
  • Deut. 16:18
  • Deut. 17:8-13
  • Ex. 23:8
  • Lev. 19:15
  • Deut. 24:17-18; 16:19-20; 5:20
  • Ex. 23:1-2, 7
  • Deut. 19:16-21, 15; 24:16; 25:1-3; 21:22-23


Today’s readings covered GOD’s laws for Israel regarding government. Included in these verses was Deut. 24:16:

Fathers shall not be put to death for their children, nor shall children be put to death for their fathers; a person shall be put to death for his own sin.

GOD has set life up such that each person is responsible for themselves and themselves alone. GOD has given each of us a role to play and our responsibilities change over time. When we are kids our responsibilities are fewer than as adults. Obey your parents. Love one another. Be kind and patient with one another. Forgive those who wrong you. As we get older, and we learn more about life, we begin to take on more responsibilities and making more difficult and important life choices, such as where to go to college, whom to date, how to dress, where to live and what type of work to do.

The good news is that GOD only holds us responsible for the choices that we make where we are in life. In other words, GOD doesn’t expect a young child to know what time they should go to sleep so that they can get up at the right time the next day. But GOD does expect us to make good choices with those decisions that we are capable of making.

Another good thing about how GOD set life up is that you are not responsible for someone else’s decisions. If you choose to play nicely with your brother or sister but they are mean to you then GOD doesn’t hold you responsible for their bad behavior. Also, when you are an adult and you are with someone else and they say bad words then GOD is not going to hold you responsible for their decision to sin with their mouth. (GOD does expect us, however, to teach people the right way to live.)

Don’t misunderstand me—from time to time we do have responsibility for others, but only from the standpoint of our own actions regarding them. Consider parents: When a child is grown and moves out of their parents’ home, GOD does not hold the child’s parents responsible for his or her actions. But GOD does hold those parents responsible for how they trained that child when the child was young and living in the parents’ household. This is because the decisions of the parents when the child is young go a long way toward determining who that child will become when they are grown.

In society there are too many people who refuse to take responsibility for their own actions. It seems that these people are always looking for someone else to blame for their bad choices. By the time you are an adult, the time for blaming others is over. GOD expects each of us to accept responsibility for our own decisions and actions. That’s being a good child, citizen, employee, employer, and Christian. Don’t blame others for your choices. Accept personal responsibility!


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