How to Take Your Accountability to God Seriously

Amos' words to Samaria offer wisdom to our lives.

We don’t like accountability. Oh, we like the idea of accountability. For governing officials. For pastors and priests. For bankers and doctors. But personally? Uh, no thanks.

How to Take Your Accountability to God Seriously

(Photo: Ruins atop Samaria’s acropolis mark the kings’ administrative center. Courtesy of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands)

From the pages of Scripture, an unlikely prophet named Amos helps us learn why our refusal to accept personal accountability is more than simply wrong or foolhardy. His words to the northern capital of Samaria are words we need to hear as well.

Without accountability to God, we will never become all we want to be.

Amos’ Simple Question

The Prophet Amos spoke to the prosperous nation of Israel who sensed no need for anything spiritual. Amos asked a penetrating question:

Do you put off the day of calamity? —Amos 6:3

These were people who may have recognized a time of accountability to God would come, but they did not believe it was near. So they gave themselves up to a life of spiritual insensitivity, material gluttony, and sensuality.

Samaria served as the capital of the northern kingdom of Israel

(Photo: Samaria served as the capital of the northern kingdom of Israel. Courtesy of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands)

Part of the image of God within us is a sense of justice. When we see an outrageous wrong, everything within our spirit demands justice. That is, until it comes to the sin we commit — and then we want God to just drop it and forgive.

How to Take Your Accountability to God Seriously

We are all accountable to God, and the day we stand before Him is unavoidable.

  • For the one who will not respond to God—and believe in Jesus Christ—he or she will stand one day before God’s Great White Throne and face eternal judgment. The Bible makes this clear in graphic detail (Revelation 20:11-15).
  • For the person who believes that Jesus’ death on the cross paid for his or her sins, heaven is secure. But as Christians, we still face God’s temporal discipline—and if we remain unrepentant, we face premature death (Galatians 6:7-8; Hebrews 12:7-11).

Answer these two questions honestly:

  1. When someone confronts you with a personal flaw of yours, do you receive it or reject it?
  2. Who do you have in your life that you allow to keep you accountable?

If no one is confronting you anymore, you are in a dangerous place. Your blind spots may be revealed one day by tragic consequences (Proverbs 29:1).

We ought to view accountability with God for what it really is—a good thing!

Question: Do you think accountability is necessary? Why? To leave a comment, just click here.

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  • Deb Bear

    Absolutely,even Older grandmas do. 🙂 like the quote. A very good reminder

  • SeanaScott

    Accountability is essential to my life. Just last night my husband confronted me on something i did that was unloving to someone else that i did not see. But i think accountability needs to be within the context of a trusting relationship to work well. I know he loves me and wants the best for me. Including my close believing girlfriends. Like the scripture says, our hearts are deceitful. We need outside perspective.

  • Terry Hatmaker

    Wayne, excellent article. I also want to thank you for putting the blog posts back into the emails!

    • Thank you, Terry. And you’re welcome! Yeah, it just made sense to give folks who subscribed to my blog what they subscribed for! I’ll just have to trust God for any interaction. (Like you!) Thanks.

      • Terry Hatmaker

        I figured you could use some feedback on the change. Difficult to know what is working or not without some type of feedback. 🙂

  • Jeanelle Sims

    What a great question ” do you receive accountability or reject it” I had to ask my Father which one did I do, receive or reject. I was reminded that most of the time I received accountability as criticism. He is still working with me on that.
    Thanks Wayne for making me think. Have a great weekend

    • Thanks for your honestly, Jeanelle. Accountability is often felt as criticism, isn’t it?

  • Gayle

    Yes Wayne, God’s timing is perfect with the “accountability quote !”. I’m not going to give you some kind of “superficial spiritual jargon” about this quote for myself; it’s simply a loving rebuke and call , from my Father in heaven, to confess my sin, ask His forgiveness, and forgiveness of the person that I offended. I’m no stranger to His loving disciplines…but oh !!! I hate the be setting sin !! Thank you for your obedience to get God’s word into everyday life, without apology.

    • You’re welcome, Gayle. Your superficial response is profoundly challenging! Thanks for including it for us.

  • John

    I almost fear that even responding in this way is sinning, but LORD forgive me, for YOU know my heart. This is so hard to deal with. I know the Word, and what it is telling me, and I know The Father has brought me to this point of realization that my sins have offended HIM so greatly. And as HIS child, I continually have to check myself before I go too far down the road of being upset that HE allowed me to sin so much. SO I pray that this is a step HE is allowing me to take towards HIS will being fulfilled for my life. I accepted CHRIST into my heart at 15 or 16, and being 33 now, I can say that I know the voice of the HOLY SPIRIT. I also know that throughout this nearly 20 year walk, I have disobeyed and fallen into much sin; and because of that, my mind is so damaged in respect to being able to differentiate what is the devil’s voice, what is the voice of GOD, and what is my own guilty conscience. This is already probably too long of a post, but please bear with me. I have spent so many years “hiding” my sins from people. I finger quote hiding because, of course, GOD has seen it all. On Father’s Day of this year, I rededicated my life, and my heart to THE FATHER and to JESUS. …. May my spirit be one with YOURS, if this is what it takes. Bless YOU GOD for YOUR patience, and for YOUR HOLY SPIRIT. YOUR will be done

    • John, I rejoice with you that the Lord has given you a heart of repentance. I urge you to get involved in a church that teaches the Word and put yourself under the accountability of the elders. Also, please get the book Game Plan and follow its counsel. May the Lord bless you as you cling to Him moment by moment.

  • Faith

    It has not been easy for me too…..I am always tempted to defend myself or look for one excuse or another.

    But I thank God for His grace I am now growing to accept and rwpeb

    • That freedom from bondage is available to us, Faith. It’s never easy, but neither is it impossible. May the Lord give you strength as you “pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart” (2 Timothy 2:22).

  • Craig Bartl

    I accept gods chaining now but I didn’t before. I was saved in 94 but after the death of my vary dear friend who lead me to the Lord I started to stray. I can tell you this GOD will use extreme circumstances in your life to get your attention and draw back his lost sheep. In July I lost a great paying job from which I squandered a lot of the money. I’ve had thoughts of suicide be living it will never get any better. Sense that day July 15 2016 I have read my bible every day twice as a matter of fact I now attend my church on a regular basis. And have gotten involved with helping the homeless which the Lord has given me a heart to do. I ask him every day for a closer walk with him . It seams the closer I get to the Lord and the more I obey the more the enemy attacks sometimes to the point I want to cry. I love the Lord and I know that he loves me. But you will face conciquences for your sin. I hope this can be an encouraging message for anyone going through the same hardships. Stay strong and trust that Jesus will use what the enemy intends for evil for your good and his glory. God bless.

    • The key, as you mentioned, Craig, is to stay in the Word daily. Renewing the mind with truth is the key to victory against listening to the lies of the enemy. Thank you for sharing your story, Craig. Thank you for not giving up.