How confident are you before the Lord regarding your conscious? It is a very important question that needs to be answered. In answering it your relationship to the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit is defined in the heavenly places. Confidence concerning your conscience can stem from a variety of things, but its primary root is obedience. Obedience to the Lord in all things is the key for a conscience that is confident. It allows for a variety of things to take part in further building up your conscience. If your conscience is questioning your integrity before Him, it is a sign you should strive more to obey Him. And conscience certainly questions disobedience in all, especially in those saved in Christ.
One of the reasons the Holy Spirit is given to us is to help our conscience discern obedience. The motive is clear. God is holy and desires we be holy. In every matter and attitude He wants us to be perfect. Hence, we hear Jesus telling us to be perfect just as the heavenly Father is perfect. When we listen to our Spirit-guided conscience, we please the Father. No one is born to obey the Lord God. Sin has to be removed and the sinful nature be bound in fetters of the Spirit for perfect obedience to spring forth from us. We have been saved in Christ, and so, our sin has been removed. But, Satan can still work on our sinful nature, since it exists as long as we live in the flesh. Through it we are inclined to disobey the Lord. The secret to having a confident conscience before the Lord is to grow in the Spirit. It implies obedience and is possible only with a Spirit-guided conscience. This then means we correct ourselves or repent when needed and be right in the things we have earlier been wrong; the sanctification process did not cease. Day by day we attain greater heights in the Lord and obtain a conscience that is confident before Him. Therefore, the Spirit in Luke testified for Paul saying, “While Paul said in his own defense, ‘I have committed no offense either against the Law of the Jews or against the temple or against Caesar’” (Acts 25:8).
The basis for such conscience in Paul is in fully obeying the Lord. Since he was being faithful in all things concerning the Lord, who is above all and whose law is perfect than any other, he never had the need to cause offense to anyone or anything. If he caused offense to any, it was only to the Lord. And he was cleansed of it by the sanctification process. Hence, at one place he goes on to say that he lived his life with a perfectly good conscience before God and at another that he fought the good fight and kept the faith. Now, he is a man like us. So, can we also say or feel the same about our conscience up to this day? I can and I am hopeful you also can. For when I found out what I learned was not in the best interest of God to serve Him I did that which He wanted me to do. In doing so, I did not give offense to any, but with a confident conscience preached the Christ crucified among those who chose another gospel. It was God’s desire they choose Christ, but they did not. Even to this day they reject me at the citation of my name and still, I mean no offense to them, except that I do not preach or sustain their gospel. For I serve a better law and the God of it. I am resolved to persist in this manner so that I keep the sanctification process and that I should not desire to touch a fragment of their teachings or beliefs. This is the Lord’s way for me so that the sinful nature in me is bound by the fetters of the Spirit and I may rescue some of them for Christ.
We all ought to have a confident conscience. For it we must live to the Lord. “So also we, while we were children, were held in bondage under the elemental things of the world” (Gal. 4:3). We are no longer children, but sons of the Most High. So, let us not allow the elemental things of the world rule us. They are the reason to lose our integrity before the Lord. They do not permit us to recognize the Spirit’s interference. They do not allow the Word we read and hear to have an impact on us. We become numb to the instructions of the Lord. Furthermore, we get confused in knowing what the Lord’s will is for us. O my friend, remember your former days and how they were a burden to you. What good does it bring you, if you after having known the Lord, still continue as formerly? Satan has won over your conscience and you are missing all the good things from the Lord. Let your conscience be turned to the Lord. Let His Spirit fill it and guide you for greater things. You have been saved by the precious blood. And to still be in bondage to the meaningless things of the world is living in disobedience. The Lord is greater than what your mind sees, desires and holds. He is able to lead you to complete obedience and thus, give you confidence regarding your conscience.
As you are confident of your conscience before the Lord, the Lord will lead you in the ways He chose for you. You will bear fruit for Him and He will bear good things for you. A resolute support for this is in the words of the prophet that said when you are with the Lord, the Lord is with you. And we also heard of Noah. “By faith Noah, being warned by God about things not yet seen, in reverence prepared an ark for the salvation of his household, by which he condemned the world, and became an heir of the righteousness which is according to faith” (Heb. 11:7). Only a confident conscience in Noah allowed him to see the Lord’s way for him. There are several things spoken of him in this verse. The first of them is faith. There is no such thing as faith and obedience. Faith includes obedience. Belief in the Lord refers to the moment where the Lord requires us to trust Him with His promise or work. For example, Abraham believed God and it was credited to him as righteousness. Those moments could be as many as the Lord wills. Faith is having belief in everything the Lord said and abiding in them. Then, a conscience that is confident before the Lord appears in us. So, we see the reason behind Paul boldly uttering those words. No man can have a confident conscience by himself. But when his conscience is being sanctified by the Lord for complete obedience, he acquires it before the Lord.
Here is the ultimate reason for having a conscience that is confident. “Behold, I am coming like a thief. Blessed is the one who stays awake and keeps his clothes, so that he will not walk about naked and men will not see his shame” (Rev. 16:15). At the coming of the Lord we should not see our shame. So, the Lord Himself provides through our faith that we do not walk about naked on the earth. If He is coming like a thief, there is all the more a reason to have confident conscience. Hence, His ways to us and our walking in them is more than important. His ways are our clothes. To be awake is to unceasingly obey Him. If you want to realize how great an advantage we have, think of all those who do not accept the clothing He offers. In fact, by keeping our clothes on we stay away from shame, i.e. indecent acts, on this earth. Look at the righteousness the Lord gave Noah, Abraham and Paul. They could not be indecent. This is the benefit of a conscience that is confident before the Lord. It allows us to extract everything from His righteousness so that we do not see our shame at His coming. Then, the outcome is glorious. All those three saw it. They were not only saved, but were taken care of and were given amazing rewards. So, the Spirit asserts “That is, it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of the promise are regarded as descendants” (Rom. 9:8).
We are the children of promise in Christ; God’s descendants. God’s descendants, what does it exactly hold? To fully realize it, we must have a confident conscience before Him. Being saved in Christ mean we are His descendants. But a full realization of it comes when we are obtaining the inheritance He stored for us. Then, we shall be overwhelmed to know the love He desired to bestow on us for the love He demonstrated toward us when He saved us in Christ. They who are bound by the elementary things of the world or the flesh can never see such love until they too like us become His children by this principle. “Jesus answered, ‘truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God’” (John 3:5).
It is not enough to be born of water. One must also be born of the Spirit. This was the teaching of Jesus to Nicodemus. Once a person enters the Kingdom, he or she becomes His descendants for a confident conscience before the Lord. Many consider water baptism alone and speak contrarily to Jesus’ intent regarding the other. They consider being born of water as the reason for forgiveness of sins. Some think it as an automatic choice for being born of the Spirit. Both are at wrong. Jesus was explaining that there is more to John’s baptism. John’s baptism signified repentance for forgiveness of sins. Being born of water still carries the same weight in Jesus. However, being born of the Spirit is to be filled with the Spirit for performing His will and ways, and for demonstrating His works. Hence, growing in the Spirit is the key for a conscience that is confident before the Lord. You will know when you are filled with the Spirit. For it is God’s doing. Take stock from these words of Jesus. “Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place” (Matt. 24:34).