Commentary: We are all accountable to God


The first essential element of the Gospel of the Kingdom of God is the understanding and acceptance that we are all accountable to God. 

Many today would balk at the idea of accountability to God. Most today would say that we are accountable to God for just the “big” things, like the Ten Commandments. But just to be absolutely clear, I am not merely stating that we are accountable to God for just the “big” things. Neither am I implying that it is only one day in the future where we will give account of our lives before God. I believe one day we will. It says so in the Scriptures. “So then, each of us will give an account of himself to God.” (Romans 14:12, CSB) But that is not my main point here. My main point is that we are accountable to God in all things and we are accountable to Him now. 

Certainly there will be a day of accounting. The apostle Paul communicated this when he wrote in the Scriptures, “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each may be repaid for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.” (2 Corinthians 5:10, CSB)

It is hard for us, in our day, to understand that when we say the kingdom of God or the Gospel of the kingdom of God, we are talking about the good news of the sovereign king. Our problem is that we don’t have the experience of a benevolent king’s reign and rule. We live in a democratic republic here in the United States. Our country has never had a king who reigns and rules. 

Even in Great Britain, they do not experience a true kingdom. Their government is a constitutional monarchy. The powers of the ruler are limited by the constitution. It was not always this way in Britain, but it is today. King Charles reigns but he does not rule. Parliament rules. 

When I write about the kingdom of God, I’m writing about a king who is an absolute monarch, who rules without outside restriction. The only boundaries that God has as king are those within His own nature or that He has declared by His own self-imposition. Everyone in His kingdom is governed by His benevolent and righteous, but absolute rule. 

No one in the UK today asks what King Charles thinks about their choice for dinner. They do not ask when in an argument with someone, WWCD? (What Would Charles Do?) They do not think for a moment that King Charles would even want to know what they ate for dinner or what they said in that argument. Their everyday lives do not revolve around what King Charles thinks or does. He may reign, but he does not rule. He doesn’t pass laws and he doesn’t enforce them. Parliament does that. 

As best as I can tell, I believe that there is only one country in the world today that still has an absolute monarchy. That country would be Saudi Arabia. There, the king reigns and rules. There they ask, “What would the king want?” If they do not do the will of the king, the king can do with them as he pleases. 

Like it or not, we are all accountable to God. Even the King of England and the King of Saudi Arabia will stand before Him and give an account. We are all subject to the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. Writing of Jesus to Timothy, Paul states, “...He is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings, and the Lord of lords, who alone is immortal and who lives in unapproachable light, whom no one has seen or can see, to him be honor and eternal power. Amen.” (1 Timothy 6:15–16, CSB)

Every king who has ever reigned and ruled has died. Only one was raised and lives forever and His kingdom has no end. 

A. W. Tozer expressed this same sentiment when he wrote this in his book “He Dwelt Among Us.”

It is He who is the judge, and when the judge of humanity shall appear, He will have the shoulders of a man and the face of a man, the man Christ Jesus. God has given Him authority to judge mankind so that He is both the judge and the Savior of man. That makes me both love Him and fear Him; love Him because He is my Savior, and fear Him because He is my judge.

We may not want to be accountable to God, but we need to be accountable to God. Without this knowledge we as a society and as individuals will become lawless and end up destroying ourselves. 

“They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served what has been created instead of the Creator, who is praised forever. Amen.” (Romans 1:25, CSB)

The old Greek philosophers believed that those whom the gods would destroy, they first made mad.  When we think we can make our own rules, then change them when we like, regardless of reality, we lose touch with reality. 

When we cease to believe in the accountability and judgment of God, we go mad.


Jimmy Kinnaird has been the associational mission strategist for the Fairburn Baptist Association since August 2021. He's served as a pastor for 21 years and in various denominational and consulting roles for 14 years.