Text: Exodus 21:28-36 If an ox gore a man or a woman, that they die: then the ox shall be surely stoned, and his flesh shall not be eaten; but the owner of the ox shall be quit. 29But if the ox were wont to push with his horn in time past, and it hath been testified to his owner, and he hath not kept him in, but that he hath killed a man or a woman; the ox shall be stoned, and his owner also shall be put to death. 30If there be laid on him a sum of money, then he shall give for the ransom of his life whatsoever is laid upon him. 31Whether he have gored a son, or have gored a daughter, according to this judgment shall it be done unto him. 32If the ox shall push a manservant or a maidservant; he shall give unto their master thirty shekels of silver, and the ox shall be stoned. 33And if a man shall open a pit, or if a man shall dig a pit, and not cover it, and an ox or an ass fall therein; 34The owner of the pit shall make it good, and give money unto the owner of them; and the dead beast shall be his. 35And if one man’s ox hurt another’s, that he die; then they shall sell the live ox, and divide the money of it; and the dead ox also they shall divide. 36Or if it be known that the ox hath used to push in time past, and his owner hath not kept him in; he shall surely pay ox for ox; and the dead shall be his own.
Personal responsibility, it is almost a lost idea in the United States. Nothing is our fault. Our mothers did not love us enough; our daddies spanked us (or they were not tough enough on us. They cannot win for losing), my brother looked at me funny while I was growing up. This is a pet peeve of mine. While I was reading this passage it reminded me I am responsible for the results of my actions. If a man knows an ox has a history of goring people and did not take actions to secure the beast and this animal kills, the ox and the man dies. The owner is responsible for the actions of the animal, or if you dig a pit and do not take the responsibility to cover it will be responsible if something falls in. A far cry from us; if you place a hot cup of coffee in your lap, you can be scalded, If you eat fast food three times a day, you will gain weight. It is time to use common sense.
But we do come by it naturally. When Adam sinned, he did not take responsibility and confessed. He blamed the woman, who in turned blamed the serpent. But when we stand before God, the blame game will end; we will stand before God and be judged. What we chose to do with God’s Son Jesus:
And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. 13And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. 14And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. 15And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire. -Revelation 20:12-15
The decision is ours and we will not be able to blame anybody else, then we will have to take responsibility for our decision or lack thereof.