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I'm Responsible for Me!

Sunday, May 26, 2024

Scripture: So then each of us shall give account of himself to God. 13Therefore let us not judge one another anymore, but rather resolve this, not to put a stumbling block or a cause to fall in our brother's way.  Romans 14:12-13 (NKJV)

Observation: Paul tells us (Romans 14:10) that we will all have to appear before God’s judgment court.  The IVP Bible Background Commentary explains that , “Judgment seats” were common in the Greco-Roman world; officials like Pilate or Gallio would make their judgments from such a bema or rostrum (Acts 18:12). God judging all people before his throne was a common image in Jewish portrayals of the end. It is natural for Paul to apply Isaiah 45:23 to the final judgment, because the chapters around it speak of God delivering Israel in the end and calling the nations to account before him so that they acknowledge that he is God.

Application: Since only One was ever perfect, that is, Jesus, it is impossible for us to find the perfect person to marry anymore than it is possible for us to be perfect in every way for others to marry us.  And yet, it is so easy for us to look for and find fault in our spouse and to close our eyes to our own faults.  That’s why these words of Paul should be of particular interest to us because we will all have to give account for ourselves.  Here are a few things that these texts tells and that we should keep in mind:
1. Since we all will have to give account for ourselves, then we should work on changing and improving ourselves, not others.
2. We should not judge others (our spouse, children, parents, etc.) because God is the judge and He does not give us the right to judge others.
3. Judging others does not help them but rather becomes a stumbling block which prevents them from growing in the image of Christ.
     Instead of judging others based on our own faulty natures, let’s find ways to help each other to imitate Christ and thus become more like Him.  Judging my spouse will only make me less satisfied with them and more unhappy to have them in our life.  On the other hand, if I help my spouse be more like Christ, in reality I am helping myself have the best spouse possible and as it happens I will be happier with the person He gave me as my helpmeet.

A Prayer You May Say: Father God, help me to be less judgmental of others, particularly my spouse, and instead help me to help them be more like Jesus Christ.

Used by permission of Adventist Family Ministries, North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists.