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Act 24:16 And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void of offense toward God, and toward men.

 Feb 10, 2007           Our Conscience             Kathleen Maples

What is our conscience for? What does it mean? Internal or self knowledge of right or wrong, power in us which recognizes the lawfulness or unlawfulness of our own actions and instantly approves or condemns them. Conscience will be careful to determine our duty, before we act, and then judge our actions when we do act or when we don't.

Pro 20:27 The spirit of man is the candle of the LORD, searching all the inward parts of the belly.

The Lord gave a gift to each person born. He put a light of truth, a judge, in effect, in residence in each one of us. It knows our deepest thoughts, can't be removed, and will tell us if what we are doing is wrong or right, and will tell us what we should or should not be doing. No one will have an excuse or say they didn't know. God built a security system if you will, into each one of us. Our conscience is separate from our mind, and it will either accuse or excuse our behavior, thoughts and words. (Rom_2:15).

Your conscience will tell you when you sin. It will judge you guilty immediately. It will convict you of your wrong actions when you hear the truth. For instance, if you have done wrong, perhaps ignored your conscience in the process, and you come to the House of God, He knows. And sometimes, He will come and send the Word to convict even stronger, in an effort to bring you to repentance, so He can forgive you, rather than you piling up judgment and wrath for your sin. In Acts 2:37, after Peter preached his first message under the anointing of the Holy Ghost, those who had helped to crucify Jesus, who had screamed for His blood, many of them were convicted and saved.

Act 24:16 And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void of offense toward God, and toward men.

What better is there to strive for than a conscience that knows this soul has done nothing to offend God or man? What peace that man or woman has. Paul's conscience has nothing to judge against, for he doesn't lead others to sin by his own behavior. He causes no one to stumble, in effect, being blameless.

Heb 9:13 For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh:

Heb 9:14 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?

In the Old Testament, the priests offered sacrifices for the people, and themselves, and sprinkled the blood and in God's sight, this purified the flesh of the people, although it had to be repeated when they sinned again. However, the Lord, brought His own blood into the Holy place before God, and because of that shed blood, those who place their faith in it, will be purged, cleansed, and forgiven of their sins even more so.

Heb 10:1 For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect.

Heb 10:2 For then would they not have ceased to be offered? because that the worshipers once purged should have had no more conscience of sins.

Because God used physical things and situations to illustrate or show us spiritual principles, we can see by the old sacrifices, they could not perfect the people and cause them to be able to live in such a way that their conscience had nothing to condemn. Would you not like to put your own conscience out of business? There are two ways to do that-and one is deadly.

Heb 10:19 Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,

Heb 10:22 Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.

We have the Great High Priest, Jesus Christ at the right hand of the Father on the Throne of all power in Heaven. Because of His presence there in our behalf, we are encouraged and told we can draw near, we can come close, but we must have an honest heart, being fully persuaded that we can believe and rely on God and His promises, and the finished work of Jesus Christ at Calvary, who paid for our sins, with His brutal death. We can have our minds sprinkled with that precious blood, oh, cover my mind, Lord, with that precious blood, and it will separate us from an evil or guilty conscience, and our bodies cleansed and washed with the pure water of the Word of God. Because we deliberately expose ourselves to the Word of God, wanting to yield to It, hungering for what we read there, the more we read it, the more we long for Him, this Word washes us and cleanses us. I don't understand how it works, but I have felt it's marvelous cleansing power and it felt as if someone just turned on a shower inside me. It is the most wonderful feeling. It leaves you feeling joyous, refreshed, strengthened, and at peace. And in my case, extremely awed and grateful.

1Jn 3:18 My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth.

1Jn 3:19 And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him.

1Jn 3:20 For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things.

1Jn 3:21 Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God.

When we do what we know to do, and are honest with others and ourselves, we can rest in that. Jesus said if ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them. (Joh_13:17) If we always feel condemned, or find fault with ourselves, and blame ourselves for our failures, and flaws, we judge ourselves guilty, that is a heavy load to carry. It weighs us down. Our conscience could be working overtime because we are behaving badly, or our conscience could be very tender, and our heart be very much longing after God, and every little infraction, real or imagined, stirs our conscience up against us, and combined with the accusations of the devil, this can weigh very heavy. But God is greater than all that. He is bigger than our fears and feelings, and our feeble little minds. He knows and sees things how they really are. He is just and He is merciful. If we trust Him and call upon Him to sort these things out and help us, He will. But if our conscience has none occasion to accuse us, oh, what a blessed place to be in! IF and that's a big if, we have done everything we know to do, and we've done it with the right attitude, and motive, then the rest is up to God, and that's a great place to stand in.

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And ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free. John 8:32