A man went to his therapist and said, “I keep giving in to the same sin and my conscience is troubling me.”
“So, you want some help on how you can strengthen your willpower?” The therapist asked.
“Well, no,” the man replied. “I was hoping you could help weaken my conscience.”
It isn’t a good idea to have your conscience weakened. Can it be trusted? Should we adopt a Jiminy Cricket theology of conscience, “Always let your conscience be your guide”?
What is the conscience? Is it that voice in your head that tells you what is right and wrong? Is it always a reliable instrument? Here are some thoughts about conscience.
Our conscience must be informed by the Word of God. It is possible for the conscience to be misinformed. If we neglect the discipline of Scriptural intake, then we will not have the certainty that the “voice inside” is of God. We may then find ourselves saying, “Did God really say,” (Genesis 3:1) when clearly it is something God has said. Our conscience should always be informed by what God has said.
Our conscience can be suppressed by sin. When we reject what God has said in His Word, we can over time fall into self-deception. Paul speaks of this in his letter to Timothy when he says of false teachers, “Whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron.” As we ignore the spirit of conviction of sin we are in danger of shaping an untrustworthy conscience.
Keeping a good conscience is critical to a vibrant faith. Timothy is encouraged to fight the good fight by, “holding on to faith and a good conscience (1 Timothy 1:19). It is a good conscience that John MacArthur describes as, “a built-in warning system that signals us when something we have done is wrong.” When our conscience is functioning as it should, we will not live in self-condemnation.
Cultivate a good conscience by preaching the gospel to yourself daily. Call on the Holy Spirit to convict you of sin and lead you to righteousness. When your conscience convicts of sin, let that lead you to change your ways and confess that sin to God. And remember that your union in Christ means that there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1). As a forgiven child of God, that voice that reminds you of that sin is not your conscience speaking. Don’t trust it. Preach the gospel to yourself.
Church, hold on to faith and a good conscience. Spend time with people who help you develop a healthy conscience that is in tune to God’s voice. Get connected by joining a community group. You can sign up this Sunday.
Blessings to you, Pastor Brian
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Link to This Sunday Worship Service
The next Discovery Class will start this Sunday October 3rd at 9:00 downstairs in the fellowship hall. This is a four week class to learn more about who we are as a church and is required for membership. Classes will run from October 3rd through October 24th.
Community Group Fall Kickoff
The official launch of this year’s community group season will take place in October. Signups for new and existing groups will take place this Sunday and next.
Men’s basketball will be starting up Monday, October 18th in the gym. Contact Justin Whitman at 603-477-2970 or firstname.lastname@example.org if interested in helping with this ministry.
Trunk or Treat
Trunk or treat will be held Sunday, October 31st in the gym parking lot. Stayed tuned for further details.