Owning Our Actions: The Biblical Call for Restitution

Ex. 21:19  …only he shall pay for the loss of his time, and shall cause him to be thoroughly healed. 

Check this out!  A glimpse into the heart of God pertaining to an issue of character reveals that God expects us to assume full responsibility when we have wronged someone.  It is not enough to admit you were wrong, but also to bear the burden you have placed on the victim in terms of loss recovery.  In this particular passage, a loss of wages, as well as all medical expenses incurred as a result of the wrong doing, were to be completely restored by the one who caused the event of misfortune in the first place.  In a perfect world, everyone would naturally take it upon themselves to be the kind of person that would assume responsibility for his or her actions, be they positive or negative.  However, we live in a sin-cursed world, where not one human being is perfect.  That said, it is more natural for sinful man to shun his or her responsibilities, rather than embrace them.  Some intentionally do this, fully knowing what they are walking away from, and yet others create these kinds of situations without fully thinking through the negative consequences they are creating every day by their actions involving others.  Then, when the ones being negatively affected by their actions call them out on it, instead of admitting their wrong doing, they deny it’s their fault, and try to walk away regardless.  Question:  when you engage in the lives of others in career, recreation, or even ministry, is what you are bringing to the table in their lives an asset or a liability?  Having been in ministry long enough to observe many situations over the years, I’ve learned that if we’re not careful, we can place demands on others that God never placed on them, and as a result, it drains them of their treasures, their time, and their God-given talents, all the while thinking we are doing the work of God, when we are in fact creating a deficit in the lives of those whom we ask to serve alongside us.  This often happens when we do not fully understand what it will cost someone to do what WE think they should do for us in “ministry”.  Either ask of others only what GOD would ask of them, or else be prepared to relieve the burden of the task by assuming the full financial weight of what it is you are asking of your co-laborers in Christ.  We are not to be lords over God’s heritage!

~ Pastor Gary Caudill

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