Hebrews 4:13 (NKJV) 13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.
Yesterday we looked at how the Word of God produces the rest of faith. Verse 12 tells us that the Word is like a scalpel that cuts open our lives to reveal what may be hindering and then cuts out those hindrances so that we can be whole and productive. We also looked at Mark 4 and Jesus’ teaching concerning the Word of God as a seed and the heart of man as the soil.
Hebrews 4:12 says that the Word of God is a living thing. We need to remember that. It is not just a book or a theological handbook. It is alive with the life of God. The nature of that life is seed life. Just as the earth was designed to interact with natural seeds to produce a crop, our hearts were designed to interact with the seed life in the Word of God to produce the life of God in us. We need to remember that just as a natural seed takes time to grow, so does a spiritual seed. We must keep the seed in the ground while we wait on the Lord. If we keep the conditions right for growth, we will eventually see the fruit. That fruit is the rest of faith we have been talking about.
Today I want to spend a few moments on verse 13. We saw that the Word of God here is not called “it” in this sentence. The pronouns used to describe the Word are “his” and “him.” The Word and The Lord are one. We looked at John 1:1 where the bible tells us the “Word was with God and the Word was God.” That does not mean the book is God. It means the book contains the life of God.
In the end of this verse, Paul gives us some important insights. Look at what it says in the Young Literal Translation.
Hebrews 4:13 (YLT)13 and there is not a created thing not manifest before Him, but all things are naked and open to His eyes–with whom is our reckoning.
We must realize that nothing is hidden from God. It is no coincidence that the word “naked” is used here. There are very few people in the world who really do look good without clothes. That is because cloths cover all the flaws. You may look great in the right clothes but if we strip away the covering all the ugly imperfections come bursting through.
That is what he is talking about here. We cannot hide anything from the Lord. All the “warts and bulges” are exposed to him. All the hurts and needs shine forth before his eyes. He knows you. He knows what you need. He knows where you are weak and where you are strong. He knows your failures and your success. There is nothing hidden from his sight. The good news is that He is your loving Father and his only motivation is bring you into the highest good for your life.
While we must remember that God loves us with an everlasting love and that his mercy endures forever, there is more to this scripture. The NKJV says that we must give account to the Lord. In the context of this verse, we must give account to the Word.
I believe accountability is under attack in our world. As we watch the news, we see violence all over the world and all over the United States. Part of the problem is that no one wants to be accountable. The popular teaching today is that nothing is the individual’s fault. The blame is placed on race, education or family relations. Some people are disadvantaged so they should not be held accountable for their actions.
We see this extended to government. Politicians are not held accountable for their actions. That used to be one of the roles of the free press in our nation. Now the press only holds the people they disagree with accountable and often for things they never did. The party that the reporter or news organization favors is never called to account. Instead, the questions they are asked cover the transgressions and mislead people into a false sense of who the political figures are.
There is a lack of accountability in the home. Marriage has become something we do for a time and when the “going gets rough,” we get going to someone else. Marriage is a covenant established by God and we need to be accountable to each other for the actions that would break that covenant. Instead we rationalize and justify and move on to the next partner.
There is also lack of accountability between parents and children. Parents are not allowed to discipline their children biblically. The children can report their own parents for abuse when there is none. Onlookers, who know nothing of the situation will get involved between parents and children and cause problems. No one believes children should be abused and if we see abuse, we should hold parents accountable. However, the atmosphere that has been created leads to a generation of children who are undisciplined. Schools cannot even teach because of it.
All of this adds to the entitlement mentality that is gaining dominance today. All people think they deserve all things. They should not answer for bad performance at work or criminal behavior in society. Young people should not have to grow up and earn what they get. It should be handed to them on a silver platter. All punishment is wrong and all bad behavior has a cause that is outside the control of the doer.
This is not the bible. This verse says we must give account to God. Young’s Literal Translation is even stronger. He says that there is a reckoning with God. This reckoning comes for the whole world comes at the second coming of Jesus Christ. However, there is a reckoning for us today. What have we done with the Word? Have we obeyed the Lord? Have we lived according to the precepts of the Word of God? The answer determines if we will enter the rest of faith.
Hebrews 2:2-3 (NKJV) 2 For if the word spoken through angels proved steadfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just reward, 3 how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed to us by those who heard Him,
That verse may seem a little harsh but it is in the bible. How shall we escape accountability if we neglect the salvation that was purchased by the blood of Jesus? This is certainly talking about receiving Jesus as Lord and being born again. I also believe we can apply this to our daily salvation. If we neglect what Jesus has provided us in our daily living it does not mean we will go to hell. It does mean that we will not have or be what Jesus wants for us. It also means we will not be able to enter the rest of faith.
Accountability and rest go hand in hand. When I know I have fulfilled my obligations and am walking correctly towards my wife I am at rest in our relationship. If I have been unfaithful (never was and never will be, by the way) I will not be at rest in her presence. I will wonder what the future of our relationship might be.
The same is true for parents and children. When we have fulfilled our accountability towards one another, we have rest. If I have wronged my children or they have done something wrong before me, we are not at rest. We live on edge wondering what will happen if our transgression is discovered. If I have been accountable, my transgressions are dealt with between the affected parties. Once that is done, they have no power over me.
We could apply this to government, school or job. In any area where relationship is part of the equation we will find that accountability promotes rest and the opposite promotes distrust, strife and unrest. Nowhere is this more important than in our relationship with the Lord. (1 John 3:20-21)