Weekly Pastoral Message prepared by Rev. Murray Adamthwaite
for Sunday 6th July 1997
From the Pastor: Conscience I
"Political correctness" is a term we hear much about these days. It refers to
the need to express opinions which have the approval of the political, and
media, establishment. Any variation from such norms is not to be tolerated. We
can see how this operates in regard to racial issues, "rights" issues, sexual
issues, religious tolerance issues, and the like.|
Those preaching a liberal, left-wing approach on such matters will often be
heard to cry "freedom of conscience", an ironic plea in that political
correctness poses a serious threat to freedom of conscience, particularly to
Christians with a conservative belief system who wish to put their belief into
the public arena.
Conscience, however, is a very variable entity. One man's conscience may direct
him to live the "alternative lifestyle", while another's may tell him to
repudiate that lifestyle. One conscience agitates for free abortion, the other
pleads for its abolition. The fact is that conscience can be trained to tell the
individual almost anything, or at least can be smothered so that its voice
against even the most basic morality is stifled.
The apostle Peter warned against teachers who would "promise freedom while
they themselves remain slaves of corruption" (2 Peter 2:19). Jesus declared
that "whoever commits sin is a slave of sin" (John 8:34). The paradox is
that we only have real freedom of conscience when we are captive to the
Word of God.