“How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?” (Hebrews 9:14)
TEXT: Romans 1:18-32
The conscience is an internal judge examining all that you do or say. It cries out before any wrong-doing. It does not keep quiet during the act and keeps on talking even after the act. Every man has a conscience. This fact is pointed out in 2 Corinthians 4:2.
The conscience can exist in different states. These states affect the character exhibited by the conscience. Based on this character, the conscience can manifest itself as any of these: evil conscience. Convicted conscience, weak conscience, good conscience and conscience devoid of offence. Consequent upon the fall of man in the Garden of Eden, man’s conscience became darkened and defiled. Our Bible reading for today tells the terrible story of what happens when the conscience becomes defiled, depraved and evil. It is an evil conscience that directs a man to bow down and worship an idol. It is an evil conscience that accuses a man of being anti-social when he refuses to entertain others with alcoholic drinks or partake in an immoral gathering. The conscience becomes convicted when a man hears the Gospel of Jesus and the Holy Spirit quickens the word in the heart. When the hearer receives the word, he does one of two things: either he yields to the working of the Holy Spirit or he excuses himself (Romans 2:15). If he yields to the prompting of the Holy Spirit, He begins to feel sorrowful for his sins and soon, he is on his way to repentance. Have you yielded to the prompting of the Holy Spirit? The conscience becomes purged when a man yields to the prompting of the Holy Spirit and his awakened conscience puts pressure on him to conform to God’s stand on sin and righteousness. He begins to realize the evil of a depraved conscience, and this conviction leads to conversion and salvation. Such a person has his conscience purged and he begins to find joy in serving the living God.
Conversion is therefore the recreation of a conscience which has long been silenced. A young convert would however find out that his conscience is still too weak to be relied upon (1 Corinthians 8:7). Such weak conscience may accept anything that is “Not too bad”; ignoring the fact that anything that is not too good is definitely not good. This weakness can be overcome by prayer, Bible study and constant obedience. To a sinner, the conscience is a burden; but to the saved, the conscience Is a big help, a friend to know, to love and a messenger from God which constantly reminds him of God’s standard, which is perfection (Matthew 5:48). The desire of God for every born-again believer is to have a good conscience (1 Timothy 1:5). One of the highest goals of a Christian life is to have a conscience devoid of offence toward God and toward men (Acts 24:16)