Clarity in the Clutter
“. . . John, whom I beheaded, has risen!” Mark 6:16
When news reached Herod of Jesus’ works, his guilty mind was awakened. He thought John, who he executed, had been raised from the dead to haunt his miserable soul. His conscience made him a coward and he was shaken by his fears. Herod did not believe in resurrection or the Spirit, but he exclaims “It’s John, whom I beheaded.” There are moments in life when our past catches up with us.
In one motion the king had taken off the prophet’s head, and neither his kingdom nor his wealth could undo the deed. Till the king’s death, that moment would keep him company. Sooner or later, every person comes to a place where they face happiness or sadness in the conscience of how they came by it.
The power of a person’s conscience can be, through cultivation, made sensitive or, through neglect, can almost cease to be heard or felt. The conscience can be seared or hardened, but it is never deadened. One never knows what incident can awaken and bring one into the grip of truth.
The conscience never sends mixed signals to the heart. It knows what wicked is and when what we’ve done is wicked. It always injects truth into the heart. The conscience is the umpire of the soul, an inward monitor put there by God to guide and guard; to send danger signals when crossing into a perilous way. Conscience manifests as a tinge in the heart, a knot in the stomach, a red flag or, as the voice of reason.
It’s there helping us to walk in peace as we live between two eternities. Ignore it, disobey it and reap the consequences of foolishness. Try as we may to squelch its message of truth, there will come a day when it will be heard.
Was Herod right in the conclusion his guilty conscience jumped to – that John had risen from the dead? No, he was not. It wasn’t the spirit of John speaking to Herod, but the presence and power of the Savior, who came into the world not to condemn but redeem, to have the last word about our past, present and future.
Has your conscience been calloused by willful disregard of God’s way?
Ask the Lord to give you a clean conscience to clear out the clutter between you and Him.