The Value of Responsibility
Definition: Accepting accountability with reliability; trustworthiness; fulfilling our roles as saints as appointed and as ordained
- "And the Lord said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother’s keeper?" – Genesis 4:9
- "And it came to pass that I, Nephi, said unto my father: I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them." – 1 Nephi 3:7
Judah experienced a remarkable turnaround, going from selfish boy to a man who took responsibility for his actions. Remember when Judah and his brothers visited Joseph in Egypt for the second time? Judah pledged his life to his father Jacob (Israel) that he would bring his youngest brother, Benjamin, back safely from the journey.
The visit went well, but Joseph commanded his men to place a silver cup in Benjamin’s saddlebag, making it appear as if he had stolen it. When Joseph’s men “discovered” the cup and accused Benjamin of theft, Judah quickly offered himself to be Joseph’s slave in exchange for his brother’s freedom.
What a far cry from the young man who sold his brother Joseph into slavery years before. Judah had learned the meaning of being his “brother’s keeper.”
“With great power comes great responsibility.” Do you remember this Spider-Man quote? Peter Parker realizes that his superhuman powers have the equal potential to be used for evil or for good. We, too, have been given superhuman power — we know what it means to really love — a love not given by the world and not produced by another human but only given by God.
When Christ’s love enters our hearts, we’re transformed into God’s superheroes on earth. And we are given the great responsibility to care for others.
Christ’s love drove him to the cross to sacrifice His life for us. Most of us will not be asked to give our physical lives, but we are asked to be responsible for and care for others. This may mean taking out the trash, preparing a lesson for Sunday School, mentoring a young person, auditing the books, or providing a ride to church for someone (to name a few examples). We are to perform each task with equal dedication, even when we don’t feel like doing it.
“Am I my brother’s keeper?” Without a doubt, yes.
Points to Ponder
- What are the most important responsibilities in your life?
- What responsibilities are you running from?
- How can you more fully permit Christ’s love to empower you to fulfill your responsibilities to your family, your church, your co-workers, etc.?
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This article has undergone ministry review and approval.