5 Minute Read

Today’s Bible Reading:

1 Samuel 24:1–25:44
John 10:22-42
Psalm 116:1-19
Proverbs 15:20-21

Today’s Bible Verse(s):

1 Samuel 24:5 (NLT): “But then David’s conscience began bothering him because he had cut Saul’s robe.”

Reflections on Today’s Bible Verse(s):

The word “conscience” appears in the verse I have chosen for today. Our conscience is what sounds the alarm when we believe that we have done something wrong. And it is so powerful that it may cause us to subconsciously act in ways that others can see our guilt.

I wrote a post, “Symptoms of a Guilty Conscience,” in July 2011 (on one of my previous websites), and it continues to be accessed every day. It currently has 6,182 pageviews. People are definitely interested in what clues people demonstrate when their conscience is sending up red flares!

Rather than write another lengthy post on the symptoms of a guilty conscience, I will simply compile a list of many of those symptoms with some relevant Scripture.

  • Conscience is the “voice” inside our head that lets us know when we have crossed a moral line and done something we believe to be wrong.
  • Conscience is something that all people have regardless of our standing with Jesus.
  • Conscience is essentially God’s law written on our hearts (see Romans 2:15).
  • Conscience cannot be explained by the evolutionary worldview. This theory of origins cannot explain why humans feel guilty when they do something they believe to be wrong, even when they have never been told that it was wrong. However, the human conscience makes perfect sense when we believe in a God who has given us a moral law to live by.
  • Conscience is NOT the Holy Spirit. However, the Holy Spirit works with our conscience to convict us when we sin.
  • Some people shut down their conscience to no longer bother them when they do something wrong (1 Timothy 4:2).
  • The conscience can and should be trained with daily, meaningfully significant study and meditation upon God’s Word.
  • Our conscience is not the ultimate authority. We may be innocent even though our conscience bothers us, and we may be guilty even though our conscience feels clear (see 1 Corinthians 4:4).

Our conscience can be incredibly helpful in our walk with the Lord. It is the light on the dashboard that illuminates when something is wrong. So, train it by being a student of God’s Word. And then live according to God’s Word while listening to your conscience.

Matt Ellis is the pastor of First Baptist Church in Polk City, Florida (fbcpolkcity.com). His latest book is God’s Grace in the Real World. Connect with him on FacebookTwitter, or LinkedIn.

Photo by Francisco Gonzalez on Unsplash