So I always take pains to have a clear conscience toward both God and man. Acts 24:16
Because of its importance, I make no apologies in bringing this subject to your attention again after spending some time on it last Sunday. Many years back, J. MacArthur wrote a book called ‘Vanishing Conscience’ which aptly described a cultural shift, of how the conscience of the culture was becoming deadened to objective truth. But more concerning, is this same cultural trend of a ‘vanishing conscience’ is being openly displayed among believers.
Rather than read me on this, let our last years InStep speaker, Jerry Wragg, pin point the issue from his book ‘Spiritual Leadership.’
A heart of integrity is cultivated by striving to maintain a clear conscience. Our consciences are the internal mechanism given to us by God to drive us toward sincerity. Like an internal accountability partner, the conscience acts as a witness in our hearts and minds to either “accuse or even excuse” our actions (Rom. 2:15). When we inform the conscience with biblical truth we are telling it to accurately hold us in check against the standard of Scripture. The conscience itself is not our benchmark, but if kept clear and clean it becomes a powerful instrument of integrity as it drives us toward the grand, inflexible benchmark – God’s Word.
Jerry continues with this warning: Each time our consciences “sound off” we can either muffle or unleash the volume of their impact. Prompt obedience sharpens the clarity of truth’s familiar sound, causing our spiritual senses to go on high alert. The more we obey, the greater affirmation we have that we are honest and genuine. A highly trained, truth-sensitive conscience will give us no rest when we edge toward compromise. If, instead of resolutely fleeing sin, we suppress the truth through rationalization and compromise, the clearest resonation of right and wrong will become faint. Do this enough times and no bell of truth will ring at all! [Grace Quotes]