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The Doctrine of Man – Part 9

VII. The Human Conscience

The Good Samaritan

The human conscience is simply defined as “what the mind allows or disallows.”

The problem with that is obvious. The mind then becomes our god if we let our conscience be our guide. It is a doctrine of the devil to “let your conscience be your guide.” The Lord God Almighty and His written Word are to be our guide. Our conscience can be an aid or an enemy to obedience. Our conscience may allow what God does not allow, or it may disallow what God expects of us.

For example: Our conscience may not bother us if we walk around with half or most of our skin uncovered during the hot summertime. Our mind allows it. But God’s Word says, Leviticus 18:6-7 “None of you shall approach to any that is near of kin to him, to uncover their nakedness: I am the LORD. The nakedness of thy father, or the nakedness of thy mother, shalt thou not uncover: she is thy mother; thou shalt not uncover her nakedness.” …and so on. In the New Testament we are instructed in 1 Timothy 2: 9 “In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array;” It was said of the nation of Israel once in 2 Chronicles 28:19 “For the LORD brought Judah low because of Ahaz king of Israel; for he made Judah naked, and transgressed sore against the LORD.” Peter was convicted in his spirit and got right by the presence of Christ one day in John 21:7 “Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, It is the Lord. Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisher’s coat unto him, (for he was naked,) and did cast himself into the sea.” The Demoniac, when delivered from the devils that were in him by the power of God, was described as “sitting, and clothed and in his right mind,” (Mark 5:15). When our mind allows some things that God condemns, then there is something wrong with our conscience. Conscience should never replace Christ on the throne of our hearts.

The opposite is also true: Our conscience may disallow what God expects of us. God expects us to be soul-winners, prayer warriors, tithers, Church servers, charity givers, “assembling of ourselves together” (Hebrews 10:25), etc. A person may say, “I have no conviction about that, I have no burden about that.” Because their conscience is not pricked about their sin of omission, their conscience has taken the place of Christ as their shepherd.

Now the word “conscience” is only found in the New Testament. It is translated from only one Greek word: suneidesis. It is the moral consciousness, or lack thereof, of a man. It is what that particular person’s mind allows or disallows. As God begins to control a person’s mind, the conscience obviously will change and become an ally to our Christian walk rather than an enemy. This is the way God changes us. Romans 12:2 says “And be not conformed to this world, but be ye transformed (Greek metamorphosis) BY THE RENEWING OF YOUR MIND, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God.” We need to have a “conscience toward God.” (1 Peter 2:19)

A. The Bible identifies 10 types of consciences in this world:

1. A convicted conscience – John 8:9 (These men were pricked in their conscience for judging another when they, themselves, were guilty.)

2. A good conscience that bears witness/testimony – Romans 2:15, 9:1; 2 Corinthians 1:12

3. A conscience void of offence – Acts 24:16 (A good testimony before God and man.)

4. A weak conscience – 1 Corinthians 8:10-12 (This is the person who is young in the Lord and gets offended easily by the actions of others, or is emboldened by the wrong actions of believers they are watching and end up doing worse things.)

5. A defiled conscience – 1 Corinthians 8:7; Titus 1:15 (The person with a weak conscience eventually defiles their conscience, letting the actions of other believers and the world dictate their convictions, rather than the word of God guiding them.)

6. A good conscience – 1 Timothy 1:5, 9; Hebrews 13:18; 1 Peter 3:16, 21 (This is the conscience most mentioned, and our aim. To live in a way so that no one can honestly accuse us of wrong, and God sees our actions as right.)

7. A pure conscience – 1 Timothy 3:9 (There is no substitute for purity in all our being.)

8. A seared conscience – 1 Timothy 4:2 (How sad it is when a person gets past feeling in certain areas of their life. This happens to the lost and the saved. Some saved people cannot seem to be changed by preaching, singing, example, God’s discipline, or anything. Their conscience has been seared. Let us pray for the healing of our conscience until we come to the place where everything that troubles God also troubles us.)

9. A purged conscience – Hebrews 9:14 (Thank God that our conscience can be purged from thinking that our dead works please God, to truly serving God in the Holy Spirit.)

10. An evil conscience – Hebrews 10:22 (A conscience that allows us to think or do bad things.)

B. Our conscience need to serve:

1. God first – Acts 23:1, “And Paul, earnestly beholding the council, said, Men and brethren, I have lived in all good conscience before God until this day.” 1 Peter 2:19, “For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully.” 1 Peter 3:21b, “…the answer of a good conscience toward God, by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:” We must care that our words and deeds are right toward God.

2. Others second

a. Being subject to government – Romans 13:5 “Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.”

b. Being subject to the scrutiny of the lost – Acts 24:16 “And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void to offence toward God, and toward men.”

c. Being subject to the scrutiny of the saved – 2 Corinthians 5:11, “Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.” 1 Corinthians 8:7-13, “Howbeit there is not in every man that knowledge: for some with conscience of the idol unto this hour eat it as a thing offered unto an idol; and their conscience being weak is defiled. But meat commendeth us not to God: for neither, if we eat, are we the better; neither, if we eat not, are we the worse. But take heed lest by any means this liberty of yours become a stumblingblock to them that are weak. For if any man see thee which hast knowledge sit at meat in the idol’s temple, shall not the conscience of him which is weak be emboldened to eat those things which are offered to idols; And through thy knowledge shall the weak brother perish, for whom Christ died? But when ye sin so against the brethren, and wound their weak conscience, ye sin against Christ. Wherefore, if meat make my brother to offend, I will eat no flesh while the world standeth, lest I make my brother to offend.”

3. Ourselves last – Romans 9:1 “I say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Ghost,” Our conscience, when right, works with the Holy Ghost as a partner to make us be what He wants us to be, and to do what He wants us to do.

 
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Posted by on March 5, 2014 in God's Truth

 

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The Doctrine of Man – Part 5

V. The Being of Man – Part 1

Man was created as a Trichotomy (a dividing into three parts), or perhaps more correctly, a Triumvirate (association of three persons). As seen in 1 Thessalonians 5:23, “And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

As seen in the death of Christ:

He was a body – Luke 23:52-53, “This man went unto Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus. And he took it down, and wrapped it in linen, and laid it in a sepulchre that was hewn in stone, wherein never man before was laid.”

He was a spirit – Luke 23:46, “And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost.”

He was a soul – Acts 2:27, 31, “Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption…He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption.”

 

A. Man is a Body

This is the most obvious part of our being. Man is made up of flesh, bones, muscles, organs, hair, eyes, feet, mouth, arms, legs, hands, fingers, etc. He is a walking miracle, so complex that only a Supreme Being of superior intelligence could have thought of or created such a body.

The body is sacred to God. It is called the “Temple of the Holy Spirit.” 1 Corinthians 3:16-17, “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.” The body is also the possession of God, 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, “What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

We can sin against our own body, 1 Corinthians 6:18, “Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.” The body can bear in itself the punishment for its sin, 1 Corinthians 11:30, “For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.” There are many illustrations in the Bible of diseases being inflicted on a person’s body for the sins of the body, especially sexual sins. Hebrews 13:4, “Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge.” Sexually transmitted diseases are rampant, and some are fatal. There are also many diseases in the body caused today by smoking, drinking, overeating, drugs, improper eating and other vices.

The body was made the way it was for God’s ultimate glory, even if not “perfect.” John 9:1-3, “And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth. And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.” Exodus 4:11, “And the LORD said unto him, Who hath made man’s mouth? or who maketh the dumb, or deaf, or the seeing, or the blind? have not I the LORD?”

The body is the only part of our trichotomy that is not eternal, yet this is what man pays the most, and sometimes all, of their attention to. The body will return to dust, Ecclesiastes 3:20, “All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again.” One day there will be a resurrection of the just and unjust, Acts 24:15, “And have hope toward God, which they themselves also allow, that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust.” Both will be given new bodies, which will be able to endure extreme bliss in Heaven, or eternal torment in a Lake of Fire, Matthew 10:28, “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”

The body should be cared for by the believer in Jesus Christ, 1 Corinthians 10:31, “Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.” A good question to ask ourselves, as children of God is, “Will action glorify God?” But the body is not the main thing in life, 1 Timothy 4:8, “For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come.”

The body is sometimes referred to as the flesh. When it is referred to as the “flesh” in a derogatory way, it is referring to the appetites (lusts) of the flesh. Appetites are okay, but when they become unrestrained or they control us, we are in the “flesh.” Some verses that use the word “flesh” this way would include:

Galatians 5:24, “And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.”

Romans 8:8-9, “So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.”

Romans 8:12-13, “Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.”

Any time the members of our bodies are not yielded to the Holy Spirit, we are in the “flesh.” (Study Romans Chapter 6.)

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Posted by on February 10, 2014 in God's Truth

 

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The Doctrine of Man – Part 4

IV. The Fall of Man

A. Adam Sinned

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Adam, created as a free moral agent, with the power to make his own choices, broke God’s command when he followed his wife in disobedience to God and thus he sinned.

Genesis 3:1-7 “1   Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
2   And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:
3   But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
4   And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:
5   For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
6   And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.
7   And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.”

Eve was deceived (beguiled) by the devil, Adam was not. He sinned willingly. 1 Timothy 2:14 says, “And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.”

B. The Curse of Man

Genesis 3:8-19 “8   And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden.
9   And the LORD God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?
10   And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.
11   And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?
12   And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.
13   And the LORD God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.
14   And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:
15   And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.
16   Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.
17   And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;
18   Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;
19   In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.”

Adam blamed his wife and God, Gen. 3:12. Eve blamed the devil, 3:13. God blamed them both, 3:14.

It is generally said that Adam caused the downfall of man – Romans 5:12 “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:” because he sinned willingly, and he was not deceived like Eve was. Sin by deception, however, is still sin! The Jews had to offer sacrifices for sins of “ignorance.” (See Leviticus 4:2 as an example.)

Because of Adam’s and Eve’s sin, the curse for the sin include:

1. Sorrow – Genesis 3:16, 19

2. Woman’s subjection to man – Genesis 3:16

3. Ground was cursed – Genesis 3:17-18, Romans 8:22 “For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.”

4. Labor by the sweat of their brows – Genesis 3:19

5. Death – Genesis 3:19

a. A physical death would come

b. A spiritual dying began

c. An eternal death would follow

(Genesis 3:19; Romans 5:12; 3:23; Luke 16:19-31; Revelation 20:12-15; 21:8; Jude 12)

6. Imputation of sin to Adam’s descendants – Romans 5:12 “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:”

C. Today man is a:

1. Sinner by nature – Ecclesiastes 7:20; Isaiah 64:6; Romans 3:23; 1 John 1:8, 10; Psalm 51:5

2. Sinner by choice – James 1:13-16; Isaiah 53:6

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Posted by on February 4, 2014 in God's Truth

 

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The Doctrine of Man – Part 3

III. The Purpose of Man

A. For the Pleasure of God

Revelation 4:11 “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.”

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B. For the Glory of God

John 9:1-3 “And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth. And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.”

Isaiah 43:7b “…for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him.”

C. For Fellowship with God

Genesis 3:8-9 “And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden. And the LORD God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?”

1 John 1:3 “That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.”

 
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Posted by on February 3, 2014 in God's Truth

 

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The Doctrine of Man – Part 2

II. The Creation of Woman

The creation of woman was similar to many of the things that we studied about in the creation of man. Differences or additions to that would include:

A. Woman was made with childbearing capability

Genesis 1:27-28 “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”

B. Woman was made to help the man in accomplishing, as a team, the will of God for his life

Genesis 2:18, 20, 24 “And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him….And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him…Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.”

1 Corinthians 11:8-9 “For the man is not of the woman: but the woman of the man. Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man.”

C. Woman was made so that man would not have to exist alone

Genesis 2:18 “And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.”

D. Woman was fashioned out of Adam’s rib, unlike Adam who was fashioned out of the dust of the earth

Genesis 2:21-23 “And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.”

Because of this, she was given the name “WOMAN” which means “of the man.” The woman is “the glory of man.”

E. Women and men were made to be mutually dependent upon each other

Thus God instituted that most men and women get married – Genesis 2:24-25 “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.”

1 Corinthians 11:11-12 “Nevertheless neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord. For as the woman is of the man, even so is the man also by the woman; but all things of God.”

There really should not be a war between the sexes, but rather a mutual respect, knowing that both need each other. This is the way God planned it. He did NOT plan for man to be with man, nor woman to be with woman. That is an abomination to God.

 
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Posted by on January 27, 2014 in God's Truth

 

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The Doctrine of Man – Part 1

I. The Creation of Man

Genesis 1:26-31 “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth. And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so. And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.”

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A. Man was made by God – verse 26

Man did not evolve from lower forms of life, but was made by a direct act of God. Evolution teaches millions of years of progressive evolution, constant living and dying of species that improved and survived as they were fit. The Bible teaches that death came by sin – Romans 5:12 “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:” Because of the principle that death came by sin, and by Adam sin came into the world, the believer cannot believe in evolution. He must believe that God MADE MAN in His own image, not as a lower form of life evolving toward perfection, but “God saw everything that he made, and behold, it was very good.”

B. Man was made in God’s image and likeness – verse 26

Man is in the likeness of God. God is a being similar in looks to mankind. Jesus was said to be “…the express image of His person…” (Hebrews 1:3). God is said to have a head, right arm, left arm, feet, eyes, heart, backside, etc. in the Scriptures.

C. Man was made to have dominion over all other living things – verse 26

This dominion is to include every animal in the sea, air, and on the earth. All animals were made by God for man to have dominion over and not vice versa. The Scriptures never suggest that animals have any type of rights. They are made for man’s service, food or clothing. Man should be kind to the domestic beasts that serve him – Proverbs 12:10 “A righteous man regardeth the life of his beast…”

D. Man was made with intellect and authority – verse 28

We have seen where man was to have dominion (rulership) over all animal life. He is also to subdue the earth. The word subdue means “to bring into subjection.” The earth is to be in subjection and used by man for man. The earth is not supposed to be served or worshiped by man, but to serve man.

E. Man’s first diet was to be herbs and the fruit of trees – verses 29, 30

Dietary laws changed during the dispensations. (As examples see Leviticus 11 and 1 Timothy 4:1-5)

F. Man was made very good – verse 31

Today “there is none that doeth good, no not one.” (Romans 3:12b), but that was not the way man was made. He was created “very good.” Every man is a created marvel and miracle. God’s creation was perfect.

G. Man was made out of the dust of the ground – Genesis 2:7 “And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.”

The components of the human body are the same as those found in dirt. Ecclesiastes 3:20 – “All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again.”

H. His breath and life come from God – Genesis 2:7

Daniel 5:23b – “…and the God in whose hand thy breath is, and whose are all thy ways, has thou not glorified:” Acts 17:25b – “…seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things.”

 
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Posted by on January 24, 2014 in God's Truth

 

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