Conscience Is The Lord's Voice In Us
By: Elias Bejjani

December 04/12

Back home, in Lebanon, the land of the holy cedars, our people have this religious saying that recognizes the importance of the conscience for the righteous: "If you do not have shame, do whatever you want." Shame is a feeling that human beings experience when their conscience makes them aware that what they are doing or saying is not righteous.

If you have ever done someone wrong and then found yourself blushing and unable to look that person in the eye, you have experienced the power of the conscience. Conscience has a tremendous power over the spirit to either bring it great strength or to sap it of its power.

The Concise Oxford Dictionary defines conscience as our moral sense of right and wrong, while Biblically, it is to many, believers the God's voice in their mind.

The Bible teaches that God has placed basic principles of His Law in every person's conscience. "Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law. They show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts sometimes accusing them and at other times even defending them". (Romans 02/14-15).

The conscience operates whether or not the person ever reads the Bible or even has been told anything about God. However, by the constant ignoring of that conscience, the internal voice can be dulled to the point that when evil is done the conscience responds very little or not at all. A conscience in this condition is referred to as a seared conscience. "Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron" (01 Timothy 04/02 )

To be prepared and always ready for facing Almighty God happily on the Day Of Judgment with the needed credits that qualifies us to return to His heavenly mansions, we are ought to keep our conscience alive and functional. Conscience is God's voice that lives in and with us and keeps safeguarding and protecting us from sins via cautioning.

"Beware that your hearts (Conscience) do not become drowsy from carousing (festivities and partying) and drunkenness and the anxieties of daily life, and that day catch you by surprise like a trap. For that day will assault everyone who lives on the face of the earth. Be vigilant at all times and pray that you have the strength to escape the tribulations that are imminent and to stand before the Son of Man." (Luke 21/34-36)

What does it mean when we say that a person has no conscience?

It simply indicates that this person does not fear God, abides by no criteria for what is righteous and evil, has no shame, has no feelings, does not count for the consequences and most importantly he lives in the sin slavery. A man who has numbed, dulled or totally killed his conscience does know the truth which is God. '"And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free." (.John 08:32)

In this context, if we allow without any resistance our sickening arrogance, inflated ego, and self-centered thinking to fool and deceive us that we are strong, infallible, mighty, wiser than every body else, above all accountability, and that The Lord can do nothing about our conduct, be good or bad, than we lose ourselves and become an easy prey to the devil's temptations. Such pompous person does not listen to his conscience and intentionally ignores it completely. "And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil." (Lord's Prayer)

Yes the Lord entirely knows not only our secrets, the depth of our faith, the aims and sorts of our acts, the honesty or dishonesty of our intentions, but also knows very well all our thoughts. He is our loving Father, and like each and every caring and responsible father He wants us to be righteous. He wants us to be the best and to ultimately after our earthly transient journey to back to His own heavenly mansion that He himself has built for us and not any human being.

“Do not let your hearts (conscience) be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am". (John 14/01-03)

He, The Lord, is our conscience, yes, He is. He never abandons us under any given circumstances no matter what, unless we want Him to do so and ask Him to leave when we numb our conscience and stop listening . When we do so, we defy Him and fall into temptations. He, The Lord, the conscience advices and cautions, but it is up to us to either listen and obey or not.

Why The Lord does not force us to do and say what only is righteous?
Why He does not entirely control, dominate and run our lives so we do not do any thing that is wrong or sinful?
Why He does not interfere and stop us when committing sins?
Why He does not prevent us from falling into temptation or defying Him?

The straightforward answer for all these questions is simply because He granted us the full freedom when He "for for us men, and for our salvation, came down from the Heavens, and was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary, and became man; And was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate, suffered and was buried; And arose again on the third day" (The Creed).

Jesus was crucified to free us from the original sin and to render us free from the yoke of slavery. Therefore we run our life, and our fate and accordingly we are accountable and responsible for the consequences. We face the accountability on the Judgment Day and as long as we are alive and can breath we have the full freedom to follow any track that we freely chose for our life.

Our Father, The Lord, has granted us the freedom to do and say what ever we want, but with a very clear caution of the consequences. His voice in us, the conscience cautions us all the time and all what we have to do is to listen and obey. And because we are free and accountable He does not interfere in more than cautioning and cautioning only.

We, not only MUST always listen to our conscience and obey, but also we have an obligation not be a stumbling block for those whose conscience is weak, as Saint Paul teaches us. "Be careful, however, that the exercise of your rights does not become a stumbling block to the weak. 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 this weak brother or sister, for whom Christ died, is destroyed by your knowledge. When you sin against them in this way and wound their weak conscience, you sin against Christ. Therefore, if what I eat causes my brother or sister to fall into sin, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause them to fall. (01 Corinthians 8/09-13)

In conclusion, for us to be saved from sin, wrongdoings, stumbling, evil temptations and the lust of instincts, we are ought to continuously listen to the conscience that is God's voice and obey.

Elias Bejjani*
Canadian-Lebanese Human Rights activist, journalist and political commentator
Web sites &
Mailing phoenicia group
Elias Bejjani's Face Book site



الضمير هو صوت الله فينا
الياس بجاني/لأننا أولاد الله الذي يحبنا ويريدنا أن نعود إلى مساكنه السماوية يوم تنتهي رحلة حياتنا الأرضية، هو لم يتركنا لنكون فريسة سهلة لتجارب الشيطان، لذلك بقي في داخلنا من خلال الضمير الذي ينبهنا باستمرار لصوابية أو خطأ تصرفاتنا وأفعالنا وأفكارنا. لنستحق رضى والدنا الله ولنكون من الذين يخافونه ويلتزمون بتعاليمه علينا أن نبقي صوته فينا، الذي هو الضمير حياً وفاعلاً ومطاعاً. من يخدر ضميره يبتعد عن الله ويبعد الله عنه فيقع في تجارب الشيطان وفخاخه. إن الخجل هو من علامات قوة ونشاط الضمير فعندما نحس بالخجل ذلك يعني أن ضميرنا حي وقد أدركنا الخطأ أو الخطيئة التي اقترفنا وأحسسنا بالذنب من خلال شعورنا بالخجل. في لبناننا الحبيب نقول: "إن لم تستحي فأفعل ما تشاء"، أي إن كان ضميرك ميتاً فأنت ذئب مفترس لا رادع لأفعالك الإبليسية. في أسفل آيات من الآنجيل تبين أهمية الضمير مع شرح مختصر لكل آية.
لا يوجد كتاب يشهد بوجود الضمير في الإنسان مثل الكتاب المقدس. ولنفحصْ بعض أشهر الأمثلة على ذلك. وإذا ركَّزنا أولاً على أمثلة سلبية، نجد أن السلوك غير اللائق يُثير في الإنسان الخجل والخوف والمعاناة ومشاعر الذنب، بل وحتى اليأس. فمثلاً آدم وحواء، عندما أكلا من الثمرة المُحرَّمة، شعرا بالخجل وحاولا أن يختبئا من الله (تك 3: 7-10(.K وقايين، بعد أن قتل أخاه هابيل حسداً، بدأ بعد ذلك يشعر بالخوف على حياته (تك 4: 8-1(.، والملك شاول، بعد أن اضطهد داود البريء، بكى في خجله، عندما وجد أن داود بدلاً من الانتقام منه بالشر، حفظ حياته (1صم 26). والكَتَبَة والفرِّيسيون، بعد أن جاءوا بالمرأة الزانية إلى المسيح، تفرَّقوا بخجل عندما شعروا بخطاياهم التي وبَّخهم عليها الرب (يو 8: 2-11). وأحياناً تصير أوجاع الضمير غير محتملة لدرجة أن الإنسان يُفضِّل أن يُنهي حياته بالانتحار. وأوضح الأمثلة على ذلك نجدها في يهوذا الإسخريوطي (مت 27: 5). وبصفة عامة، فإنَّ جميع الخطاة والمؤمنين وغير المؤمنين، يشعرون بالمسئولية عن سلوكهم. وهكذا تتحقَّق نبوَّة المسيح عن الخطاة أنهم في نهاية العالم، عندما يرون اقتراب دينونة الله، «يبتدئون يقولون للجبال: اسقطي علينا، وللآكام: غطِّينا» (لو 23: 30؛ رؤ 6: 16). ويحدث أحياناً، أنَّ الإنسان - وهو في اضطراب وفي دوامة ألم شديد، أو مغمور بالخوف - يبدو أنه لا يُصغي ل الضمير؛ ولكنه فيما بعد يشعر بتبكيت الضمير بقوة مُضاعفة! عندما صار إخوة يوسف الصدِّيق في ضيقة، تذكَّروا خطية بيعهم لأخيهم وتسليمه للعبودية، وأدركوا أنهم يُعاقبون على قسوتهم (تك 42: 21). ووداود النبي، أدرك خطية زناه بعد أن وبَّخه عليها ناثان النبي (2صم 12: 13). والرسول بطرس المندفع، أنكر المسيح تحت ضغط الشعور بالخوف، ولكنه لما سمع صياح الديك تذكَّر نبوة المسيح عنه وبكى بكاءً مُرّاً. واللص اليمين، أدرك، وهو مُعلَّقٌ على صليبه بجوار الرب قبل موته فقط، أن آلامه كانت جزاءً عادلاً لجرائمه (لو 23: 41). وزكَّا العشَّار، بعد أن تأثَّر بحب المسيح، تذكَّر إساءاته للناس التي ارتكبها بجشعه، وقرر أن يُصحح أخطاءه التي ارتكبها (لو 19: 8). ومن الناحية الأخرى، عندما يكون الإنسان على دراية ببراءته، فإن ضميره الصافي يُقوِّي رجاءه في الله. فمثلاً، عندما كان أيوب البار يتألم، عَلِمَ أن سبب ذلك لم يكن هو ارتكابه لأيَّة خطايا؛ بل إن ذلك كان في خطة الله وكان يترجَّى رحمة الله (أي 27: 6). والرسول بولس، الذي تكرَّست حياته لله ولخلاص البشر، لم يَخَفْ من الموت، بل إنه رغب أن يستريح من أتعاب جسده ويُكافَأ بوجوده مع المسيح إلى الأبد (في 1: 23). وبالنسبة للخاطئ، لا يوجد ارتياح وسعادة أعظم من أن ينال المغفرة وسلام الضمير. والإنجيل غنيٌّ بأمثلة التوبة. فالمرأة الخاطئة، عندما نالت مغفرة خطاياها، اعترفت بفضل المسيح وغسلت قدميه بدموعها وجفَّفتهما بشعر رأسها (لو 7: 38).