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Watch 2022 online sermons » John Hagee » John Hagee - Conscience: God's Umpire

John Hagee - Conscience: God's Umpire

John Hagee - Conscience, God's Umpire
John Hagee - Conscience, God's Umpire
TOPICS: Conscience

Conscience exposes the threefold nature of man. You are three people in one. There is a body. There is a soul. And there is a spirit. The physical man says, "I believe it when I see it". How many of you've ever said that: "I'll believe it when I see it"? Seeing is believing. That's the flesh. The spiritual man says, "I do not see it with my natural eye, but by faith, I receive it". In the Bible, you have the illustration of doubting Thomas. He said, "I'm not going to believe that Jesus has risen from the dead until I can see and touch him with my hands on the riven side". He, doubting Thomas, was allowing his physical man to control his spiritual man. Jesus said, "Blessed is he who believes without seeing". Say that with me. "Blessed is he who believes without seeing".

Now, this is your physical man. You operate here by smell, sight, taste, feeling, and hearing. And this is how this works: you come home from work and you walk in the house, and you smell the rich aroma of something coming out of the kitchen. And then you go in and see food and you touch it. And then you break the Ten Commandments by picking it up and eating it. And shortly thereafter, you hear your wife say, "Get out of the kitchen". How many? There you are. That's the physical. Between the physical man and the conscience is the soul. This is the mind, and the will, and emotion of man. This is where you make your decision.

Conscience is your spiritual man. In this will, and mind, and emotion, you decide whether you're going to let the physical man control you or whether you are going to let the spiritual man control you. This is God's umpire. When you make the right decision, the umpire gives you a good feeling. When you make the wrong decision, you start eating Rolaids, and saying, "I probably didn't make the right decision". Through the body, you relate to the world through those five senses. You will live in deception if you allow the spiritual man to be controlled by the feelings of the physical man. Think about that. There's an illustration of war between the body and the spirit. The Bible says it this way, "We walk by faith", that's the spiritual man, "Not by sight", that's the physical man.

Think about that. Through the spirit, you relate to God, his anointing, his presence, his guidance, his love, his power. The Bible says, God is a spirit. And they that worship God worship him in spirit and in truth. A lot of people know how to go to church and sing the songs, but they never release themselves to get into the Spirit of God. And the Spirit of God is the highest level of communication with the Lord. When the soul, midway between the body and the spirit, through the soul, you decide which world you're going to obey. Think about it.

The threefold nature of man, Genesis 2:7, says, "And God formed man from the dust of the earth (that's body), and breathed into his nostril the breath of life". That word, Hebrew word, is "Ruach," which means spirit. "And the man became a living soul (physical)". Think about this. Angels are all spirit. Animals are all flesh. When you walk in the spirit, you're like an angel. When you walk in the flesh, you're more like an animal than a human being. Man's trilogy: spirit, body, soul. You're highest potential is the spiritual. When Adam and Eve were with God, walking in a state of innocence, they were actually walking and talking with the Almighty Creator of heaven and earth. The Bible says, Enoch walked with God, and God took him into heaven.

You say, "Well that's just unbelievable that God would do that". Well God did it several times. Elijah walked with God, and God took him alive from the earth into heaven in chariots of fire. You don't know how close to God you can get on this earth. So if you disappear before this sermon is over, we know you are really in the spirit. Body, flesh, your lowest potential, this is the animal side of a man. Here's where anger and resentment are born: where lying and bitterness come: where lust, and fear, and jealousy, and rage, rape, and murder come from. When the body is released, the man can become more like an animal than a human being.

The soul is the place of decision. Devil or angel, which are you? But you make the decision. Horns or halos, which is it? You make the decision. You will be what you decide to be. And don't you ever forget it. Your mother and your daddy are not responsible for your decisions. Your boy scout leader is not responsible for your decisions. I am not responsible for your decision. You are you responsible for your decision, between you and God! Now, what is conscience? By definition, "Conscience" is a God-given instrument of discernment so that we can determine right from wrong in a spiritual matter. Conscience is the lamp of God, saying, "This is the way: walk in it". Conscience is the compass of the soul.

Immanuel Kant wrote, "Two things fill my mind with wonder and awe, the starry heavens above and the moral law of God in my soul called conscience". Milton wrote in paradise lost, "Conscience is God's umpire within the heart of a man". Conscience is God's umpire in the heart of a man. An umpire is someone who says, in a ball game, "You're out"! And you can argue. You can throw dust. You can challenge their sanity, their eyesight, and other things. But you're out. They don't change their mind. You're out. I played competitive softball in this city until I was 46. When I was 46 years old, I made the all city team as a pitcher. As a pitcher, I had a very real concept of what a strike looked like. I've had more than a few conversations with umpires, very intense! "What do you mean that was not a strike"?

They never changed their mind. You can't out-yell your conscience. You may try to drown your conscience with a whiskey barrel or two shots of dope. But when you come back to reality, conscience is going to be right there barking at you night and day until you submit to the will of God. Conscience will make your bed a hot of coals, even if you have a posturepedic mattress and one of those magic pillows that guy is selling. Conscience can make your night a sleepless torment. When your conduct goes one way and your conscience goes another way, and it's screaming, "Stop it"! And you keep going, the joy of the Lord leaves you. Confidence leaves you. Hope leaves you, because when God leaves you, brother, you're alone.

That's why David said in the Psalms, "Withdraw not your Holy Spirit from me". Don't do that, because if you do that, I'm lost. A quiet conscience can sleep in thunder. A clear conscience is like a mighty fortress in the day of battle. Conscience destroys your appetite when the table is loaded down with good food. What made Adam and Eve hide from God in the garden? Conscience did that. What made king David say, "Have mercy on me, o God"? Conscience did that. "Take not your Holy Spirit from me," conscience did that. What made Pilate's wife write, concerning Jesus Christ, "Have nothing to do with this just man"? Conscience did that. What made Felix, the Roman ruler, tremble on the throne as Paul, standing in handcuffs, a prisoner, stood before him and reasoned of righteousness and judgment to come?

Get that picture in your mind. Felix had the power of the Roman Empire behind him! And here was a man standing in handcuffs, under arrest, and he is pouring out the truth of God's word. And the conscience in Felix was so stricken: that he trembled sitting on the throne of Rome. What made Judas scream, "I have betrayed innocent blood"? Conscience did that. What made Peter weep after he denied Jesus Christ three times? Conscience did that. He betrayed the Son of God. Have you? Men today battle with this inner voice from God that says, "Stop"! "Turn around"! "Danger is ahead"! They try to drug their conscience into submission, but it will not be drugged.

People drown their conscience in a whiskey river. But like a bloated corpse, it pops to the surface, demanding to be heard. The Bible says, "Whoever confesses and forsakes his sin, shall have mercy with the Lord". Before radar, before sonar, before the compass, God provided every man with a navigational direction finder. The pain of an outraged conscience is to the soul what suffering is to the body. Pain in the body says, "Stop: you need a physician". "Stop"! Pain in my conscience says "You're violating the laws of God: stop"! Peace is not possible. Joy is not possible. Prosperity is not possible. Salvation is not possible. Stop! Go back to God! Get back to righteousness, back to repentance!

The word "Repentance" is just a word, and many people really don't understand the essence of the word. Here it is. "Re" means to return. "Pent," as in penthouse, which is the highest level in any building. Return to the highest level of relationship with God. That's repentance. Adam and Eve, walking with God and talking with God, that's the highest level of existence. Conscience screams back to the author and the finisher of our faith, back to peace, back to the Word of God, back to holiness, back to righteousness, back to truth. "Thy word is truth". Ladies and gentlemen of America, our nation must return to the yea and the amen of the Word of God or we will lose this nation!

When you do wrong, the divine umpire screams in your ear, "Stop it"! Most people become hard of hearing when conscience starts speaking. They have selective hearing. Our children, all of my children, had selective hearing. When Diana and I had all five of them home, and we'd just whisper in the kitchen, "Let's take the kids swimming," you could hear a scurrying through the house. They were dressed, and in the car before you could get the keys and meet them there. But tell them to take out the trash. "What? Me"? We're talking about outside/inside. The pharisees caught a woman in the act of adultery. They brought her to Jesus. Under the law of Moses, they had the right to stone her to death.

The point is the law affected the outside of a man. If you could keep the religious rules, you were acceptable: yet, you could be as mean as a two-headed snake. That's true. America's churches are full of pharisees. They live, keeping religious rules. You have a form of Godliness, but you're denying the power of God thereof. Jesus looked at his crowd one day, and said, "Prostitutes are going to heaven before you do". The pharisees, who caught the woman in adultery, were fine on the outside. But when Jesus wrote their sins in the sand, they dropped the stones in their hands because they knew they were guilty. That's John 8:9. They were convicted by their own conscience.

Has God ever reminded you that there was something in your life you needed to change, and you prayed some prayer like this: "Dear God, if there is a possibility, remote: I know. But, if there's a possibility that something ungodly is going on in my life, would you show me"? And God does. And you say, "I rebuke you devil. I rebuke you". "There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Jesus". "The blood, the blood, the blood". It's your conscience screaming to you to get your act together! Can I hear an amen? The mind, reason will justify what conscience condemns. The Bible says, "The carnal mind is enmity with God". Your mind is at war with God. Carnal logic is at war with conscience. It is the Holy Spirit versus the flesh. You go to the supermarket, and you check out, and you get too much money back. What are you going to do? Keep the money or take the money back?

Conscience screams, "Take it back". Reason says, "Get real: you've just spent a hundred dollars for a sack of groceries you can throw in the glove compartment of your Toyota". Keep it! Take it back. Keep it! Take it back. Keep it! You see somebody in the parking lot doing this? You got too much money. If your life is ruled by the spirit, you will take it back. If it's ruled by your mind, you will keep it, and eat Rolaids for the next two weeks. The best tranquilizer on earth is a clear conscience. Conscience will not bend to outside pressure. Let me tell you the story found in 1 Kings 22 of king Ahab, the wicked king of Israel, who invited Jehoshaphat, who was a godly king, a king with conscience, the king of Judah, to join him in a war against the Syrians at Ramoth-Gilead.

Ahab gave a lavish banquet to honor Jehoshaphat. Generally all it takes to get most people to compromise with their conscience is to give them a banquet in their honor. Listen to this question. The prophet Jehu asked Jehoshaphat, "Should you help the ungodly and love them that hate the Lord"? Listen to that question. "Should you help the ungodly and love them that hate the Lord"? That's 2 Chronicles 19:2. That text needs to be dug out of the Bible and preached to our generation. King Jehoshaphat, righteous, a righteous king, said, "Can we inquire of the Lord? Is there a man of God here who will tell us the truth"? King Ahab brought 400 false prophets in. Let's call them the national council of churches. They came to the banquet room. All 400 said in unison, "Go to war: the Lord will deliver your enemies into your hands".

One false prophet put on a set of horns. This is in your Bible. You should read it sometime. Put on a set of horns and charged across the room. God will chase your enemies. Oh, there's nothing like a little drama to make a false precept fly. Just because 400 preachers and one king says it's right, does not make it right. It's not right until God's word says it's right. Morality is not determined by a Gallup poll. If one president and 400 preachers, plus the Supreme Court declare that homosexuality is right, abortion is right, pornography is right, it's still wrong, because God says it's wrong. Jehoshaphat asked Ahab, "Is there a man of God here that can give us the truth"? And Ahab said, "Yes, there's one and I hate him".

That's in the Bible, "I hate him". Why? Because darkness hates light. Liars hate the truth. The ungodly hate the church. They hate the church because the light of God convicts the life that they're living in darkness. Now enters the prophet Micah into the banquet room. Four hundred cowardly prophets resented him. His words terrified king Ahab. The prophet Micah said, "As the Lord lives, I will only say what God gives me to say". This is in your Bible, by the way. Jehoshaphat said, "Let's hear a word from the Lord". And the prophet Micah said, "If you go to war, you're going to be slaughtered". That's pretty clear. These 400 false prophets, who have told you God will give you the victory, that's a lie. Israel will be slaughtered if you go to war.

King Ahab, husband to Jezebel, that ought to tell you something. Ahab defied Micah's warning. He went to battle. He disguised himself. A man drew a bow at a venture, shot an arrow that hit him in the crack of his armor. His blood ran out of the chariot. Ahab died and dogs licked his blood like the prophet Elijah said it would. His army was slaughtered, just as the man of God, Micah, said it would. The point: conscience does not surrender to a pagan society that mocks and slanders the church. Conscience stands rock solid on the solid rock. We're not going along to get along. As long as your conscience is right with God and his word, forget what your enemies think! "If God be for you, who can be against you"? Give the Lord praise in the house of God!

America needs a resurrection of conscience. When a man who can work, won't work, and will not support his family, his conscience is defiled. The Bible says, "Six days you shall work". God worked six days in the creation and rested on the seventh. The principle of this book is you deserve nothing until you work for it. Paul said, "He that does not work should not eat". Nothing in your life is going to work until you do. Ooh!

What does it mean to walk in the spirit? It means learning to respond, initially, to the voice of God through conscience. Your spiritual man shouts on Sunday morning, "Get up and go to church!" Your carnal man, the feeling, says, "This bed feels so good. Let's watch it on television". The Bible says, "Remember the Lord's sabbath day and keep it holy". "Forsake not the assembling of yourselves together". But there is a spiritual and divine purpose for God's people coming to God's house to worship him. What will you do? Oh, it's cold outside. It's raining. I know I play golf in the rain, but go to church? I know I went to the super bowl and sat there in the snow and the blizzard, but it's 50 degrees outside. The Bible says there are four kinds of conscience.

There's a good conscience in 1 Timothy 1:5. There's a sered conscience, in 1 Timothy 4:2, where you say, "God has departed from me and hears me no more, and not by dreams and not visions". Saul said that when he went to the cave of the Witch of Endor. Are you sitting here, and there was a time in your life that you could hear God's voice, but not now? His voice has become distant and now you hear nothing.

Thirdly, there's a pure conscience, 1 Timothy 3:9. Do you have a pure conscience? And lastly, there's a defiled conscience in Titus 1:15. What kind of conscience do you have? Right now, I want you to stand and bow our heads in the presence of the Lord. How many of you would say, pastor, I want to be led of the Holy Spirit. I want more of God's presence. I'm willing to crucify my will for God's will. I want to live by his word. I want to have a pure and undefiled conscience? If that describes you, would you lift your hand where you are? I want everyone to lift your hand and pray this prayer with me.

Heavenly Father, in the authority of Jesus' name, I come before your throne of grace. And I ask you to forgive me of my sin and all transgressions that have defiled my conscience. I ask today that you would give me a pure conscience: and that from this day forward, my spiritual man would rule my carnal man to not let me be swayed by the numbers that resist the righteous. But let me be led by the sovereignty of God's word and the power of the Holy Spirit. From this day forward, I choose righteousness, holiness. I choose to honor the Word of God in word and deed, in Jesus' name. Amen.

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