educate equip enable
A man lost his wallet. A few days later he got a letter: "Sir, I found your wallet. I feel so guilty that I am returning some of your money. If guilt bothers me any more I shall send some more money."
A head hunter may have no conscience about scalping a man from another tribe, but may feel guilty about killing a monkey, because he has been taught that monkeys are sacred.
In Papua New Guinea, men hold hands without any implications that a man is gay. In our culture, men aren't allowed to hold hands. Our conscience needs to be strengthened by the Word of God, but so often it is shaped by cultural considerations.
A friend of mine poured boiling water over himself when he was only 7 years old. He was hospitalised for 3 weeks with a blister from chin to shoulder. For months he could put a pin in the skin and not feel it; the skin had been cauterised. This is similar to what happens when we ignore our conscience. It becomes seared and insensitive. (1 Tim 4:2)
Our youth group was sponsoring a child through Compassion. Each person had to contribute $1.50 per week. My daughter had got behind and I told her she was three weeks behind. She said it was only two. I said that I keep records. She said my records weren't very good, and refused to give any more than two weeks. Later, when I went to do some work on my computer, I decided to check the records to prove that I was right. Unfortunately, I found that she was right. I was faced with a decision. I could bluff my way through and not say anything. I could even change the records. No one would have known - except the Lord. My other option was to listen to my conscience, admit my mistake, and say sorry. So that's what I did.
God put a secret agent inside of you - his name is conscience. Peter Youngren on the conscience functioning to confirm the preaching of God's Word.