I was recently reading about conscience in one of my favorite books, Handbook for Christian Living by Charles F. Stanley. In just a few paragraphs, I grasped a good understanding of just how important our conscience is. Everyone of us are born with a conscience. Deeply internalized in us is a moral alarm that tells us either, Ok, now you KNOW that’s wrong… why would you even THINK about doing that? Consider the consequences! Or Yup, that’s the right thing to do. What are you waiting for? Do it!
Our conscience simply tells us right from wrong.
Because we have a moral conscience, we can’t make any excuses when we commit wrongful acts! In 2 Timothy 1:18-20, Paul tells us the importance of adhering to conscience:
18 This charge I entrust to you, Timothy, my child, in accordance with the prophecies previously made about you, that by them you may wage the good warfare, 19 holding faith and a good conscience. By rejecting this, some have made shipwreck of their faith, 20 among whom are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan that they may learn not to blaspheme.
See, Paul shows us that when you reject your conscience, you end up shipwrecked (like Hymenaeus and Alexander did). In other words, ignoring your conscience results in bad consequences.
Reading this made me think about marriage. Ignoring your conscience when it comes to any aspect of life is very dangerous.
But then I realized when you ignore your conscience when it comes to marriage, you can indeed
Kill your marriage.
Think about it:
- The man who cheated on his wife, ignored his conscience to remain faithful and in turn killed his marriage.
- The man who remained broke, ignored his conscience to save his money, spend wisely and work harder; and in turn killed his marriage.
- The man who beat on his wife, ignored his conscience to keep his hands to himself and in turn killed his marriage.
- The man who put others before his wife, ignored his conscience to put her first and in turn killed his marriage.
The list can go on and on and on. Of course, we can flip the script as well. Men don’t just ignore their conscience in marriage. Women do so too.
But the point of it all is that rejecting a good conscience when it comes to marriage is terribly dangerous. When your conscience is telling you that what you’re about to say or do is wrong — listen to it! Stop ignoring it. If you refuse to listen to your good conscience, then your marriage will end up just as 1 Timothy depicts: a shipwreck.
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