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Guide Right-Guide Wrong

A religious educator made the statement one time that "behind a great deal of our modern immoral behavior is not so much downright badness as a sincere confusion as to what is right and what is wrong." This is true many times because man wants to be the judge of what is right and what is wrong, yet God's word tells us that "the way of a fool is right in his own eyes." (Proverbs 12:15) Many sincerely believe that we should let our conscience be our guide, yet we all know a cannibal can kill and eat us with a clear conscience. A conscience must be trained to do right.

Life is made up of little decisions, and if the little decisions are made correctly, the big decisions that come along now and then will take care of themselves. But we need a guide to help us make the right decisions in a way that we are not confused between right and wrong. Consider these questions:

Would you need to keep it a secret? Things we need to hide are usually suspect. It is an uneasy feeling to have to always be on our guard, to hide our actions, our thoughts. And though many times we can hide our actions from man, there is no way possible for us to hide them from God, for God is everywhere - all seeing, all knowing. How much better to avoid those activities that must be hidden.

Where will it lead me? Many things in themselves seem harmless until we stop to consider where they lead us. Then it is easy to understand why things that seem harmless are wrong because they lead us in the wrong direction. Some feel a little lie is harmless (not taught in the Bible) but experience has shown that a little lie calls for a bigger lie. A little cheating lays the groundwork for major crime tomorrow.

What is my better side? The side God wants me to develop. All of us are made up of different personality traits. We all have our good sides and our bad sides. But God wants us to "play up" our good characteristics and to "play down" our bad characteristics. It is not difficult for us to evaluate our own personalities and to determine times and circumstances that we say or do things that are unwarranted and unappreciated. Be aware of these areas of deficiency and guard against them. Then, we more and more will present our better nature to man and to God.

What would Jesus do if he were faced with this decision? This is the acid test. This is the way we should act.

(1 Peter 2:21) "To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps. "He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth." When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly. He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed. For you were like sheep going astray, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls." (NIV)

When we develop to the point that we will go nowhere Jesus will not go, say nothing Jesus will not listen to, have no thoughts Jesus will not share, then we shall have a conscience we can rely upon to keep us safe.

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