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1 Corinthians 8:9-12 – But you must be careful so that your freedom does not cause others with a weaker conscience to stumble. For if others see you — with your "superior knowledge" — eating in the temple of an idol, won't they be encouraged to violate their conscience by eating food that has been offered to an idol? So because of your superior knowledge, a weak believer for whom Christ died will be destroyed. And when you sin against other believers by encouraging them to do something they believe is wrong, you are sinning against Christ. (NLT)

Conscience sensitivity is very relative. Some things may not necessarily be sins, but our consciences may also not permit indulgence in such.

Paul wrote, "All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful." (1 Corinthians 6:12a ESV) This means that our conscience must not just inform us of unlawful things, but also of things that are not helpful for our spiritual life. As believers, we have been guilty many times of luring other believers into doing things that their consciences haven't permitted them to do. Today's passage says, "And when you sin against other believers by encouraging them to do something they believe is wrong, you are sinning against Christ." (1 Corinthians 8:12 NLT)

We need to be careful enough to respect the boundaries that other people have. It doesn't matter what we think we know. It doesn't matter if we think we know better. It doesn't matter if we think that their beliefs are in error. We must respect their consciences and boundaries.

So, for instance, if one believer considers it immoral to hug a person of the opposite gender, while another believer sees no issue with it, both believers must respect each other's boundaries. As long as no Scripture unequivocally calls a thing a sin, it becomes a matter of conscience, and this conscience, although varying, must be respected so that we do not offend God.

Prayer: Father, please forgive us for every time we have violated the conscience of a brother or sister in the faith. Help us to be sensitive, so as not to lure anyone to violate their conscience. Amen.

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Chubie Ujah <>
High Wycombe, England

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks for sharing, Chubie.

    Let it be as you have said. Blessings.

    Thank you for sharing this devotional with us. Blessings.

    Excellent message this morning. May God continue to bless you.

    Thank you, Rev Ujah, for today’s devotion.
    I like this message of respecting other’s conscience.
    Thanks again.
    And God Bless!
    (Quebec Canada)

    Good morning Chubie,
    Your devotionals make me ponder and reflect. My brain has to work.
    I believe you are trying to tell me to respect how other people think and feel. I am a very black and white person in my thinking, and it has taken me many years to see the “gray”. I am maturing and understand that there are many ways to think about different points of view and to approach different topics.
    Thank you for sharing on “respecting the boundaries of conscience” and that this is important, and we must be sensitive to how others see things.
    May you continue to help us see more sides of a situation. Blessings.


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