Examination of Conscience

examination of conscience Examination of Conscience

Episode #41

In this podcast, we examine why you should do an examination of conscience and the surprising truth behind why most people avoid thinking about sin! Examination of Conscience is important to our spiritual lives. The truth can set you free.

1 Corinthians 4:4 is a wake-up call for all of us: “My conscience is clear, but that does not make me innocent. It is the Lord who judges me.”

If our conscience is the go-to-auto-pilot mechanism that is used in our decision making each day, shouldn’t we think about ways we have strayed and look at ways to get back onto a righteous path? Some believe that you can do nothing to earn your salvation, and this is true. Only Jesus by His life, death, and resurrection can open the gates of heaven, I don’t believe we can accept Jesus and then live our lives in sin.

So for this one reason, to be sure we are on the right path we should look at our conscience – but exactly what does this mean?  Why did God give us the 10 Commandments if we were not supposed to use them to live our lives? Why the beatitudes? Why virtues?

Because we need a guideline for right living.

1 Corinthians 8:7 states: “But not everyone possesses this knowledge. Some people are so accustomed to idols that when they eat sacrificial food they think of it as having been sacrificed to a god, since their conscience is weak, it is defiled.”

1 Corinthians 8:10 continues on, “For if someone with a weak conscience sees you with all your knowledge, eating in an idol’s temple, won’t that person be emboldened to eat what is sacrificed to idols.”

SO in other words – we must live our lives by example because if you are a professed Christian people will be looking at you and watching – to see if you mess up, and if you do, such as the Scripture above they will take that to mean they too can do what is wrong.

It is a big responsibility for all of us but often we avoid thinking about sin… have you wondered about that?

Why do people avoid thinking about sin? Because if they think about it, they might find that they are annoyed of have a “little check” in their spirit… it is as if like those cartoons of old with the good and bad angel sitting on your shoulder and temptation is in front—the person wanting to do bad, flicked off the good angels.

It was a cartoon of old, but today it is as if we’ve parked our conscience at the door and have decided that all the slogans are good – “If it feels good do it, If it tastes good eat it, If it is fun to watch, watch it. Do what makes you happy, etc.”

These are all in the Bible and they are there to be a guide for living our lives. The following points will help you understand the importance of forming a good conscience so that we can examine it, regularly.

  1. Forming a good conscience is the first step. Do we understand the difference between right from wrong? Is it important to us to do the right thing, or do we think most of life is a gray area? Reading good spiritual books – nothing that is new Age but is grounded in Scripture. Listening to good CDs or radio programs such as this one and the others on the Ultimate Christian Podcast Network.
  2. Our society has lost the senses of sin. If we don’t have a good relationship with God, and His laws (Commandments) it is difficult for us to find true happiness in our life. Our happiness will also be conditional on external things – a peaceful family, money, a job, a home, etc. If we are to find peace, we must have a relationship with the Creator of the universe—and that is God.
  3. What does it mean to examine our conscience? We think about the past, our thoughts, words and deeds –or actions to see if these things that we do are aligned to God’s plan, or the “moral law.” Examining our past will help us learn if we have done or said things that have allowed us to fall into sin. God is waiting to forgive us, and as a Catholic, I can go to confession for grave sins (John 20:21-23 “As the Father has sent me, I also send you… receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven them; and whose sins you shall retain, they are retained.”
  4. Look at the temptation in your life and try (with God’s grace) to avoid it. 1 Corinthians 10:13 – tells us that God is faithful and He will not allow us to be tempted beyond our strength – but the key is a relationship with God. If we turn our backs against God we are not giving God permission to enter into our life.
  5. For our own good. Examine and forming a good conscience is the same as teaching children not to touch things that can burn them, or cross the road full of speeding cars. We want our children protected from harm and our Heavenly Father wants to protect us from the harm of eternal damnation. If we are allow ourselves to be open to temptation on the Internet, in movies, and on television—that, by the way, is so full of the occult now it is very difficult to avoid, we allow a door to the “other world” to be open. And this we must avoid at all costs.

Let’s pray.

Dear Lord you have promised to keep us safe, to not let us be tempted beyond our strength, but with temptation provide us with a way to escape so that we can endure – we ask you, Lord, to be our protector. We give you permission to enter into our lives every day, to show us ways we are harming ourselves to allow us to have formed consciences that call evil – evil and good – good. To avoid all those places where temptation abounds, online, movies, books, and television—allow us the grace to pull the plug, to change the channel or walk away. Lord gives us the grace we need each and every day to follow You and Your ways, and will for our lives. And, I pray this in Jesus Name. Amen.

 

 

Speak Your Mind

*