We are brought up on responsibility. Knowing how to earn our keep around the house, in the community, or what misconduct looks like in school, church, what-have-you. Not every child is thoroughly raised on it, but it is without a doubt a part of our upbringing within any society; as in we are aware of what it is, no matter the details per individual. Therefore, we know culpability. We blame ourselves or others without a second thought because there is always someone at fault, and then the faultless.
To speak with honesty, we lean towards others before ourselves. We are quick to justify, easy to assume, and loose with accountability; this is us as born sinners, designed to need direction of some sort, obligation to our morals and truths.
And such a thing has been provided, but widely misused. Our conscious is not a hot topic, nor even thought of as a common matter. But my is it crucial to the way we serve our God as well as a glimpse into how He created us.
It is there to tell us right from wrong. It is our “gut” feeling we so often have a hard time discerning whether we should listen to it or not, is it guilt I’m feeling or simple emotion. Can I justify the distress away? When it is not “developed” and used according to God’s design, it becomes almost irrelevant.
This conscious of ours works off what we know and what we believe. As each individual person and heart, do we not sometimes disagree with someone because of this matter? You find it wrong and the other finds it ok. The training of our conscious is crucial to believers and non, finding their way towards a life of Christ. Let me paint you a picture. An athlete trains for their sport correct? The baseball player enters the field day in and day out, practicing fundamentals, hand-eye coordination, technique, in order to improve his overall game; if our purpose is a relationship with God then our training isn’t any different.
We open the bible, strive to understand who God is and what He desires from us, and it cultivates within our minds so that our conscious understands what’s important and what isn’t. Eventually, we look at a situation we used to justify on a circumstance or someone else, and learn to see it as a sin we ourselves are participating in. The situation is then trained in our conscious, so that when it arises again you have the capability to discern that it is in fact not of God.
We finally understand the detriment of our sin.
For the non-believers, their conscious continues to waver in luke-warm waters; accusing others of the source to their problems, training their minds to believe what society does, what their friends and family deem right and wrong. They don’t understand what sin is and therefore how to recognize it.
This conscious of ours is like a mentor, there to nudge us when we are on the verge of something sinful. In order to let it do its job, we must feed it, train it, fill it with the word of God. Let it be captivated by who He is, so that there is never a moment of justification, but rather sinful or not, for God or not.
Romans 1:20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.
We are innately attached to our creator. Searching, desiring, and craving who He is. We have no excuse to ignore or withdraw from His word, yet there are so many that do. The importance of believers’ continuously building on their knowledge of God is crucial to not only their personal relationship, but also to their neighbor, coworker, stranger. We are called to share the gospel, make disciples, our calling means we can help train the conscious of those around us, planting seeds of Jesus’ sacrifice and what that could mean for their life. Let us pray for our conscious to be clean and firm, so that we may rightly do the work we are called to do.
Bible reference: Hebrews 8: 9 According to this arrangement, gifts and sacrifices are offered that cannot perfect the conscience of the worshipper
This verse is referring to the idea that nothing from the OT sacrifices can provide us with full forgiveness of sins and relief of a guilty conscience. The conscience is a “divinely given warning device that reacts to sin and produces accusation and guilt” (John MacArthur). But this cannot be done away from God. A clear conscience is one that is founded on God’s word, and without distraction from the material world. This is something to pray for, fervently and often.