The Conflict Within our Conscience
Greetings and Blessings to my sisters and brothers in Christ Jesus. All glory and praise be to God our Father, who is truly the Author of our faith. I must say it is an honor to step in for my mom Curleen Johnson and write an inspirational and encouraging blog for her website Emmanuel at http://www.emanne.org And if you hadn’t had a chance to visit, please go visit and support, tell a friend to tell a friend.
The topic God gave me this morning was dealing with internal battles or conflict as I like to call them. You might ask why conflict and not battles? In essence they are kinda the same with different definitions. A battle can be defined as a combat in warfare between two or more armed forces, or combatants. And we know that the scriptures tell us that the battle is not ours, but the Lord. I like to think of a battle as between two or more people or spirits. A conflict to me is more internal, meaning you don’t necessarily have to have another person or spirit involved to have conflict. The dictionary says conflict is a serious disagreement or argument. And I don’t know about you, but I have had plenty of those in my own conscience. Paul wrote this on the subject:
Romans 7:15-20 (GW) “15 I don’t realize what I’m doing. I don’t do what I want to do. Instead, I do what I hate. 16 I don’t do what I want to do, but I agree that God’s standards are good. 17 So I am no longer the one who is doing the things I hate, but sin that lives in me is doing them. 18 I know that nothing good lives in me; that is, nothing good lives in my corrupt nature. Although I have the desire to do what is right, I don’t do it. 19 I don’t do the good I want to do. Instead, I do the evil that I don’t want to do. 20 Now, when I do what I don’t want to do, I am no longer the one who is doing it. Sin that lives in me is doing it.”
This conflict is sin, the flesh versus the spirit. Like I said earlier we all have dealt with this type of conflict at some point in our lives. The good news is, the answer to resolve this conflict begins with turning to God. Unfortunately, many like myself have turned toward the creations in this world to help us with the conflict. That could be money, legal and illegal drugs, alcohol, sex, people, etc.; the list goes on and on. The point is we have become too dependent on ourselves to figure out a solution when God already has it.
The Holy Spirit revealed to me that this conflict that we all face just didn’t start with us. It began in the Garden of Eden; it began with the fall of man and has exercised its wicked intentions throughout each generation. We may want to do what is right, yet we find ourselves doing the wrong things that end up hurting others and ourselves.
Genesis 3:22-24 (GW)
” 22 Then the LORD God said, “The man has become like one of us, since he knows good and evil. He must not reach out and take the fruit from the tree of life and eat. Then he would live forever.” 23 So the LORD God sent the man out of the Garden of Eden to farm the ground from which the man had been formed. 24 After he sent the man out, God placed angels[a] and a flaming sword that turned in all directions east of the Garden of Eden. He placed them there to guard the way to the tree of life.”
God did not intend for us to have this conflict within our conscience. This doesn’t mean we can point fingers at Adam of Eve, our parents, family, spouse, children, friends, co-workers, society, etc. etc. etc. It is no question it is easier to blame someone or something else for our issues or troubles, or simply try and ignore them all together. But we have all sinned and come short of the glory of God. I have certainly been guilty of pointing the finger at everyone but me for my struggles. All that has done is left me feeling guilty and depressed over my actions. Since we are aware of good and evil, knowing the knowledge of good and evil doesn’t have to be the end all. Jesus came and took our sins, our conflicts and our discord from the Father, to reconcile us back to the Father through His blood. So why do we still have this conflict?
Genesis 4:4-8 (GW)
“4 Abel also brought some choice parts of the firstborn animals from his flock. The LORD approved of Abel and his offering, 5 but he didn’t approve of Cain and his offering. So Cain became very angry and was disappointed. 6 Then the LORD asked Cain, “Why are you angry, and why do you look disappointed? 7 If you do well, won’t you be accepted? But if you don’t do well, sin is lying outside your door ready to attack. It wants to control you, but you must master it.” 8 Cain talked to his brother Abel. Later, when they were in the fields, Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him.”
We must learn to master our thoughts, don’t allow sinful words and thoughts to enter our holy place (mind). God advised Cain that he should rule over this conflict, because if he didn’t sin lies at the door. Unfortunately for Cain as is the case with so many others, myself included, Cain allowed the conflict within his conscience to cause him to kill his own brother. I have never killed anyone, but I have hurt people and took them for granted, all because I tried to deal with my conflict as opposed to giving it over to God and allowing Him to give me the victory over my conflict. The saying “the struggle is real” is often one of my favorite sayings. But how about this, “the VICTORY is real” also. The scripture says “we are more than a conqueror” that means we not only achieve victory, but we are overwhelmingly victorious. So, if the struggle is real, so is the victory!
Hebrews 10:22-24 (GW)
” 22 We have been sprinkled with his blood to free us from a guilty conscience, and our bodies have been washed with clean water. So we must continue to come to him with a sincere heart and strong faith. 23 We must continue to hold firmly to our declaration of faith. The one who made the promise is faithful. 24 We must also consider how to encourage each other to show love and to do good things.”
Again, the answer to resolving the conflicts within our conscience begins with drawing near to God! Now when we draw near to God, we can’t be fearful and tip toe and go half in/half out. We must be full of faith and draw completely into God if we hope to have these conflicts in our conscience purged from our lives. God offers us a clear conscience, a conscience restored from sin by the blood of His Son. So, when these thoughts that cause conflict begin to arise, we can hold fast and believe that God has empowered us with His WILL to do the right thing toward all people in all situations. ((REPEAT)) we can hold fast and believe that God has empowered us with His WILL to do the right thing toward all people in all situations. The last part of that scripture says we must encourage each other to show love and do good things. Have you ever been having a rough day, and then someone walks by you and says something encouraging to you? I have, and it made me feel good. It was a joyful experience. So, I try as often as possible to bring joy to others through action or words from the Lord. Joy is great medicine for conflict.
In closing, I thank my Father which is in Heaven for this brief yet powerful message of dealing with the conflict in our conscience. All glory belongs to God who is all knowing and all powerful and there is none like Him!
Proverbs 3:5-8 (ERV)
“5 Trust the LORD completely, and don’t depend on your own knowledge. 6 With every step you take, think about what he wants, and he will help you go the right way. 7 Don’t trust in your own wisdom, but fear and respect the LORD and stay away from evil. 8 If you do this, it will be like a refreshing drink and medicine for your body.”
Just as most of us pop an Advil, Tylenol, Aleve or whatever prescription you use for a headache. Try trusting the Lord for those spiritual headaches or conflicts and watch it heal your mind, body and spirit. Be sure to read today’s Scriptures in FOOD FOR THE SOUL. Love, Peace & may your joy be full!