Consider this rhetorical
question: what are you willing to die for? AND what are you willing to kill for?
September 20th, 2000, Wednesday Evening
"Conscience and Convictions of a Christian"
Moral foundations the church is losing today
OPENING: Romans 14:22 and 1 Thessolonians 5:21, KJV
Consider these true life examples:
- John 16:2: Acts of terrorism being committed in the name of Jesus Christ. Early Christians
put to death by those thinking they are doing God a service.
- Ireland: killing each other in name of religion
- During Medieval times
- The Crucades
- The Spanish Inquisition
2 Corinthians 12:20: What is it that is causing this
wrath, backbiting, murder, murmurings, talkings, debating, etc. as predicted in this passage?
What is it that is causing conflict and separation as a nation?
- ANSWER: Today, Christians are shedding biblical convictions when we really
need to be developing more of them
- What is morally right and wrong
- Fair and unfair
All of us think we're right in our own eyes but none of us will all think we're wrong.
- What separates gangs? Democrats and Republicans? Factions?
It's the system of what is their personal view of right and wrong ... their beliefs
- The United States is nothing more than a word because, today, states are not united.
- Our country has gone away from what is right to their personal view of right
- What IS right is what God says is right
We need to formulate convictions
which are right toward God so we may united
- By conviction a sinner brought to repentance
- The person is convinced they've sinned against God and guilty of death because of
a conviction from their conscience.
- Our convictions of what is right and wrong are formed from our conscience
- Everybody has convictions and a conscience--even gangs. EXAMPLE: rules violations.
If you break one of the rules, most likely you're subject to death. Now that's a conviction!
- Someday, your conscience/convictions (or lack thereof) will catch up with you
and the way people deal with it is either to commit suicide to "free" themselves of dealing
with the impossible or they repent to God for living a life of
hypocrisy (living against their conscience).
The answer is to repent to God and have a good conscience.
- Hebrews 10:22
- 1 Peter 3:16
- Romans 14:22: First fundamental question is: do you have a trust in God
(have faith in His existance)? The way to deal with it is to have conscience purified/purged with word of God
TYPES OF CONSCIENCE
- Good conscience
- Acts 23:1: Paul claims he's been living in good conscience ever
since God came into his life.
- Acts 24:16: Having a good conscience sets you free.
You're a person who doesn't have an "ax to grind with anyone."
- If you have an ax grind with God, you'll lose.
- If you have an ax grind with any of God's people, you'll be sorry
- 2 Corinthians 1:12: You really can't be happy in singing and
praising the Lord with good conscience when you're violating your conscience.
- 1 Tim 1:5: A good conscience is one that is void of offense
toward God and man. It makes you happy inside (like the church song: "Nothing between my
Soul and my Savior"). How you can love God and hate your brethren? Brother? Neighor?
- 1 Tim 1:19: Christians today are giving up their convictions
resulting in shipwrecking their life. "Legalism" is a new term meaning "to be justified
by the law." This results in not having the biblical convictions gained from a church life.
A perfect example of being justified by man and not God.
- Heb 13:18: To live honestly (not lying or stealing) is an example
of having a good conscience.
- Pure conscience
- 1 Tim 3:9: In keeping the faith
- 2 Tim 1:3: In vigilant prayer
- 1 Pet 3:16: In shaming others when they falsely accuse you
- 1 Pet 3:21: Good conscience toward God by getting baptised to symbolize
and identify with Jesus Christ
- LET'S CLEAR THE CONFUSION: Every person
saved is baptised NOT to wash away sins but
to publicly identify with Jesus Christ.
- Acts 16:27-33: EXAMPLE: Philippian jailer who got
saved and subsequently baptised.
- Defiled conscience
- Titus 1:15: One who has a defiled conscience is a
ticking timebomb about to let loose. The bible specifically states that the defiled and
unbelieving are of a "defiled conscience."
- Genesis 18:28-33: When Abraham asked God to spare the righteous of
the doomed Sodom and Gomorrah, God spared Lot. Lot was one who knew wickedness and the
difference between right and wrong and yet enjoyed Sodom and Gomorrah. And yet with
such a defiled conscience (a result of sin), God spared Lot's life simply because he had
the faith Abraham had to believe in God. Perfect example that faith in good works
will not save you but faith in God.
- Ever try to mitigate between two people who think they're 100% right?
EXAMPLE: T.V. court cases. Almost every case, even with overwhelming evidence against the
accused and found guilty, the accused exits the courtroom and says to the T.V. camera, "I
don't think the judge was being fair."
- How to deal with a defiled conscience:
- Hebrews 10:22
- 1 Corin 8:7
- 1 Corin 8:10
- 1 Corin 8:12
- 1 Corin 10: Deals with how to conduct yourself before your brethern as not to
defile their weak conscience with your actions.
- Dangerous/seared conscience
- 1 Timothy 4:1-2: There is a danger in having your conscience
permanently changed through time ("seared with a hot iron") by departing what you
used to stand for. EXAMPLES:
- Brother Jack Van Impe now endorsing the Catholic Pope's
belief you have to kiss his ring and that God talks through him
- Those seared should be the most feared people on earth because they feel
justified in all they do without remorse--even killing. TRUE STORY: A deacon in a
baptist church witnessed two youths in a car harrassing the vehicle in front of them by
tailgating and flashing the high beams. The deacon (with his wife) in the car behind the youths decides
to give the youths a taste of their own medicine by doing the same. Eventually, the people
in the car ahead of the youths gets away but not the youths and the deacon pull to the side
of the road. As the youths get out to confront the deacon, the deacon proceeds to get a
crossbow out of his trunk and shoot the driver dead.
The deacon claims he was just defending his wife but that deacon sent a youth into eternity--possibly
hell. And when sent to jail, the deacon used the most foul language, constantly.
- Hebrews 9:14: We need a renovation and washing of our minds.
- Romans 2:15: Is it one thing to know wrong and be remorseful
and another to know wrong and make it right unto yourself--to justify yourself. This is
working toward a seared conscience
WHY do we have a conscience?
- To differentiate between right and wrong ... so that our convictions may be
- Walter Martin, who authored Kingdom of Cults, said that if you're not going
to stand for something, you'll most likely fall for anything.
- We'll embrace whatever others believe: any new fad, doctrine, etc. which will result in
a worse life for cause of Jesus Christ.
- If one gets the wrong type of convictions, for example, they can make a
bomb to blow up abortion clinic. This has come to pass many times.
- Let the law take care of them but love the sinner
- Will having baby cramp your life or your lifestyle?
- Who gets off saying they can abort a baby and then cling to her own life--a murderer
who wants her own life spared.
Today, folks will put courts/Constitution/country over word of God.
Rather, put your faith in the word of God and let God's word wash your minds right!