26 March 2014
Conviction is not a comfortable word.
It speaks of a wrong that has been done and then the Spirit of God comes and shines a torch light on it and exposes it right in your face.
He reveals a secret, and ladens us with guilt and calls us to admit and turn from it.
Of course you can minimize the wrong, totally ignore it, or justify yourself for doing wrong instead of repenting and asking for forgiveness. However the consequences are extremely damaging.
Why is conviction so unwelcome and unpleasant to the modern Christian?
1. He does not want to look weak to himself and to others. Image is more important than truth - which leads to great dangers. The modern Christian is more concerned about impressing others than impressing God.
2. He thinks that only young believers and non Christians should come under conviction. He believes that he is matured and has moved beyond conviction.
3. Guilt is burdensome. He believes in the fantasy that joy and peace is incompatible with conviction and guilt. He believes the ultimate aim of the gospel is to make him happy not holy.
When conviction is aborted by the Christian, it leads to hardness of the soul. He is deceived to think that things are ok when it is not. Greed, pride, compromises and lust can easily gain a sure yet unnoticeable foothold in the consciousness of that believer. External achievements acts as a heavy smog screen to the presence of such spiritual viruses. Often at the height of glamorous success, hell breaks lose, the mighty falls and he becomes another trophy of the devil's sly strategy. Not forgetting the damage it does inside and outside the church.
Conviction is the work of the Spirit of God. A matured believer never grows beyond conviction, in fact he embraces conviction fully knowing he has feet of clay. Conviction keeps him sensitive to the Holy Spirit. Conviction keeps him humble, it keeps him dependent on God. It keeps him free from the tentacles of sin. Let conviction rip into your heart and soften your knees that you may crash before the Holy God, only to be cleansed by fire and then lifted up higher and stronger again by grace.
May our hearts be regularly convicted and bear the fruit of holiness. Stay in fellowship with the Holy Spirit and be thankful for His conviction. He is masterfully honing us to be more like Jesus.