Summary: Be thankful if you have a good conscience. When it gives you a warning whistle, pay attention! Then fight to preserve your faith and keep your conscience clear. That jarring sound is there to help you stay in fellowship with Christ
Nine Steps to Develop a Healthy Conscience (Hebrews 9:13-9:14)
"How much more shall the blood of Christ, who by virtue of His eternal Spirit has offered Himself as an unblemished sacrifice to God, purify consciences from dead works and lifeless observances to serve the ever living God." (Heb 9:14)
Illustration: Wage the good warfare, having faith and a good conscience. --1 Timothy 1:18-19
My car has a wonderful feature. Whenever I forget to turn off the headlights, a shrill warning goes off the minute I open the door. I don’t like its jarring sound, but I like what it saves me from--a dead battery.
Our conscience can work like that. When we sin or are tempted to, our conscience blows a whistle. It’s a sign that the Holy Spirit is either convicting us of sin or warning us before we do. If we do wrong, the jarring feelings from our conscience are meant to lead us to repentance. When we confess and repent, God forgives and clears our conscience.
The apostle Paul knew what it was to have a bad conscience. In 1 Timothy 1:13, he wrote, "I was formerly a blasphemer, a persecutor, and an insolent man; but I obtained mercy." He received the mercy of Christ’s forgiveness, faith, and a good conscience. He charged young Timothy to fight the good fight and maintain his faith and good conscience. Paul said that some had rejected these, and spiritual shipwreck was the result (vv.18-19).
Be thankful if you have a good conscience. When it gives you a warning whistle, pay attention! Then fight to preserve your faith and keep your conscience clear. That jarring sound is there to help you stay in fellowship with Christ.(Our Daily Bread)
A good conscience is one of the best friends you’ll ever have.
1. The Holy Spirit helps us teach people how to develop a good conscience through Spirit led self-discipline. Paul wrote, "Therefore I always exercise and discipline myself (mortifying my body, deadening my carnal affections, bodily appetites and worldly desires, endeavoring in all respects to have a clear (unshaken, blameless) conscience, void of offense toward God and toward men." (Acts 24:16) Ask the Lord to help you follow the example of Paul’s self-discipline in keeping your conscience pure toward God and people.
2. The Holy Spirit helps us teach people how to develop a sensitized conscience that hates what is evil and clings to what is good. Paul wrote, "Let your love be sincere (a real thing); hate what is evil (loathe all ungodliness, turn in horror from wickedness) but hold fast to that which is good." (Romans 12:9) Ask the Lord to help you to consciously hate what is evil:
A). Lust and all sorts of selfish desires such as gluttony B). Pride C) Jealousy D) Envy E). Anger F). Slander G). Malice H). Idolatry I). Pharisaical thinking, attitudes and actions J). Greed and all forms of selfishness K). Fault finding L). Compromises with carnality - laziness, indiscipline, discord, factions, dissensions, impurity M). Complaining N). Gossiping O). Immorality P). Possessiveness and manipulation Q). Immature attitudes and actions R). Offensive language S). Judmentalism T). Extremism U). Legalism V). Belligerence W). Deceit X). Lying Y). Fearful attitudes instead of living by faith, obedience, and trust in the Lord and in His word etc.
3. The Holy Spirit helps us teach people how to develop a good conscience by being holy and pure and above reproach examples. Peter wrote, "But as One Who called you is holy, you yourselves also be holy in all your conduct and manner of living." (I Pet. 1:15) Ask the Lord to help you become more holy in all aspects of your personal life, your relationships and your ministries.
4. The Holy Spirit helps us teach people how to develop a good conscience by training ourselves in righteous ministries. The writer of Hebrews wrote, "But solid food is for full grown men, for those who senses and mental faculties are trained by practicing to discriminate and distinguish between what is morally good and noble and what is evil and contrary either to divine or human law." (Heb. 5:14) Ask the Lord to help you mature through exercising Christ-likeness in all aspects of your personal, relational and ministry experiences.
5. The Holy Spirit helps us teach people how to develop a good conscience by making it a priority. Paul wrote, "Put absolute trust and confidence in God. Whereas the object and purpose of our instruction and charge is love, which springs from a pure heart and a good (clear) conscience and sincere (unfeigned) faith." (I Tim. 1:4,5) Ask the Lord to help you keep a pure, holy and good conscience as priority goal.
6. The Holy Spirit helps us draw a sharp contrast between a Spirit filled Christian’s conscience versus those who live according to their sinful natural desires. We know that those who are living by their sinful natural impulses have consciences that are defiled, polluted, corrupt and darkened to an understanding of the truth that is in Christ Jesus. Paul wrote, "The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man’s judgment." (I Cor. 2:14,15) Ask the Lord to help you show people the disadvantages of an impure conscience and the tremendous advantages of living with a clean Spirit led perspective.