Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Police (10/12/06)
- TITLE: Our Personal Policeman
By Ernest Yoder
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The conscience acts as a policeman. Commensurate with being fearfully and wonderfully made humans are uniquely gifted with a conscience. The rest of animate creation has no conscience but instead is stimulated exclusively from instinct. Mankind can respond to stimuli rationally and decisively with forethought and contemplation. The conscience is a very important part of our decision making process making the distinction between right and wrong. Unfortunately it can be flawed (see 1 Tim.4:2 and Tit. 1:15) hence it needs to be trained and maintained. I know what it is like to have a guilty conscience. It “arrested” me and brought me back to the place of peace. I also know the blessing of a conscience that affirms me before God. To develop a Holy Spirit trained conscience it is important for children to be exposed to godly training in their formative years. That is why the scripture instructs parents to train up a child in the way he should go so that when he gets older he will not depart from it having received an internal guide to direct the decisions of his life (Pr.22:6)
A policeman stands on a street corner and is a visual reminder of what he represents-the law. Jay walkers, purse snatchers, and red light runners are thusly held in check. (Ironically, it is obvious that where the consciences of individuals are not working properly an external force, in this case the civil law, must control them for the good of society and sometimes for their own good.) When we obey a trained conscience we are held in check. It is an internal policeman. It represents the law of God.
We can choose to ignore our conscience, yet not without consequences. The more we ignore it the less effective it is as a guide. That is why we need to protect the integrity of our conscience. We are responsible to maintain its reliability by keeping in touch with the One Who gave it. Remember, as a Christian, the blood of Christ has “purged” it (He. 9:14 KJV). Biblical principles are the guide for a good conscience.
Another fitting analogy is found in how the governor on an internal combustion engine controls that engine. I’ve had experience with these governors. When they are in proper working order (neither too tight nor too loose) the engine runs smoothly and is ready to respond to different work loads. The governor responds to “stimuli,” i.e. engine rpm, and in turn maintains the correct engine speed. Let something get out of order with the governor and the engine begins to malfunction.
Do we get the picture? As your personal policeman (or your governor) your conscience is invaluable. Protect it, heed it, and maintain it in accordance with God’s word and it will serve you well.
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