You Are Responsible For What You Know

You Are Responsible For What You Know

"Only God can judge me!"

And judge you He will... Have you ever heard that statement before or perhaps, have you said it? Many people who use it know they are doing wrong and just don't want to be held accountable. God is a righteous judge. He is just and His judgment is fair. He is full of grace, longsuffering and merciful. Nonetheless, at the right time He will execute judgment and each of us will have to answer for what we know.

Today, we continue with Part 5 of our latest series; "God's Mercy - Why Do Some Get More Than Others?" See Part 1 for the full list of seven points described in "A Method To God's Mercy". Click here for Part 4 - "Caught! What Do You Do When God Exposes Your Sin?". We'll continue today with Point 2) God judges people based on what they know. Every man is not treated equally.

Luke 12:42-48(NLT) - And the Lord said, “Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his master will make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of food in due season? Blessed is that servant whom his master will find so doing when he comes. Truly, I say to you that he will make him ruler over all that he has. But if that servant says in his heart, ‘My master is delaying his coming,’ and begins to beat the male and female servants, and to eat and drink and be drunk, the master of that servant will come on a day when he is not looking for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in two and appoint him his portion with the unbelievers. And that servant who knew his master’s will, and did not prepare himself or do according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. But he who did not know, yet committed things deserving of stripes, shall be beaten with few. For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required; and to whom much has been committed, of him they will ask the more.

God judges everyone differently. Our ultimate standard is The Word of God and how much of it we know directly affects the level of mercy we receive. According to The Parable of The Servants in Luke 12:42-48 any servant who does not do the will of the master receives stripes.

However, the number of stripes is determined by the servant's knowledge base. Additionally, the servants to whom the master gives more, a higher return is expected on his investment. Usually, in parables like these the master represents God and we are His servants. Therefore, we should be able to easily figure out how this applies to our lives.

Let me make this very practical. Two people can commit the same sin. God will judge both. The first person knew exactly what he was doing and willingly went ahead but the second person acted out of ignorance. The second person may escape with light punishment but holding all other factors constant, God will drop the hammer on the first person. Is that fair? In God's eyes, it sure is. Since He is the judge and jury that's all that matters. Now let's go even deeper.

You Are Responsible For What You Know

Hebrews 6:4-6(AMP) - For it is impossible [to restore and bring again to repentance] those who have been once for all enlightened, who have consciously tasted the heavenly gift and have become sharers of the Holy Spirit, And have felt how good the Word of God is and the mighty powers of the age and world to come, If they then deviate from the faith and turn away from their allegiance—[it is impossible] to bring them back to repentance, for (because, while, as long as) they nail upon the cross the Son of God afresh [as far as they are concerned] and are holding [Him] up to contempt and shame and public disgrace.

Have you ever met someone who walked away from God and all hell broke loose? Better yet, have you ever been so offended that you considered walking away from The Lord? OK, maybe not forever but just for a little while? Have a little fun? Play around a little? Maybe you're all "churched out" so you need to take a break, worship an idol or two for a few years then maybe give this "Jesus" thing another try in the future? OK, let's fantasize together for a moment. Think about it.

We can see it already. We're going to have the time of our lives out there then come back with awesome testimonies and the church will treat us like heroes. The young people will think we're cool and we'll have "church street cred." Who knows maybe we can write books about our experiences and end up on TBN some day?

It worked for the Prodigal Son so it should work for us too right? I'm sure you have seen other people do it for years and walk right back in almost unscathed haven't you? Well, depending on who you are that might not be your story. The Prodigal Son was young and ignorant but you might not be. I know of people who walked out on God and never made it back. They walked out the door and BAM! It was over! FLAMES!

When you get to a certain level in your Christianity you can't just walk away. When The Holy Spirit starts to move in your life and you begin to receive deep revelation from The Word of God you can't just walk away. When you start hearing God's Voice on a regular basis and begin manifesting the gifts of The Spirit you can't just walk away.

You Are Responsible For What You Know

When you get to visit heaven and encounter God's angels you can't just walk away. When you speak in other tongues and God unlocks mysteries to you, you can't just walk away. Even if God never answers another one of your prayers you can't just walk away. You're in the family now. You're in too deep. You can't just walk away!

1 Timothy 1:12-14(KJV) - And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry; Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief. And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.

When Apostle Paul was ignorant in unbelief he blasphemed against God, persecuted Christians and hurt people. He did some really bad things but God was merciful. God poured His grace all over him with an abundance of faith and love. God's expectations of Paul were low due to ignorance so God let those things slide. Paul was very thankful. I would be too. However, Paul's perspective changed when he matured in Christ. The bar was raised.

1 Corinthians 9:26-27(NKJV) - Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.

When Apostle Paul was mature enough to teach others The Word of God he became completely responsible for his actions. He just knew too much for God to let him off the hook too easily. The same is true for some of us. Other Christian people can do whatever they like but that won't work for us because we know too much. Apostle James has some more to say about this.

James 3:1(NKJV) - My brethren, let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgment.

James 4:17(NKJV) - Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin.

I love the Book of James. Apostle James had a reputation of challenging The Church to live what we preach. The higher we go the harder we fall. My heart always hurts for men and women of God who climb to the highest heights of the kingdom only to fall all the way back down. Lord, you chose us to teach others your Word, please be merciful!

Acts 17:30-31(NLT) - “God overlooked people’s ignorance about these things in earlier times, but now he commands everyone everywhere to repent of their sins and turn to him. For he has set a day for judging the world with justice by the man he has appointed, and he proved to everyone who this is by raising him from the dead.”

It's time for us to get it together. We have Christian television, Christian radio, Christian websites, Christian books, Christian music, Christian movies, Christian smartphone apps, Christian tablet apps, multiple Bible translations, audio Bibles, Bible Man for the kids, Vege-tales.... Need I continue? We are saturated with God's Word. We can get it anywhere.

We just know too much. Maybe if we lived in The Dark Ages, God would wink at our ignorance but it's 2013. Knowledge has greatly increased (Daniel 12:4). We are responsible for what we know. Let's make God proud and live like we're supposed to. He has given us much so He expects a huge return on His investments.

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