Saturday, July 25, 2009

A good conscience before God

Calvin's Institutes (1559)
Book 3 of 4 - How We Receive the Grace of Christ

Chapter 19 - Christian Freedom
14-16 - Freedom, tradition, and government
14. Freedom in Christ - 1 Pet 1:18-19 - is from other men binding the believer's conscience Gal 2:21.
15. There are two kingdoms, one spiritual and the other political. The spiritual impacts "the inner mind, while the latter regulates only outward behavior." Freedom in the spiritual realm from the laws of men does not translate into freedom from political obligation - Rom 13:1, 5. Our conscience testifies to our guilt or innocence before God, not men - Rom 2:15-16; 1 Pet 3:21; Heb 10:2.
16. A good conscience is "inward integrity of heart" toward God. See 1 Tim 1:5, 19; Acts 24:16. When binding your actions, to keep from stumbling a brother, your freedom before God doesn't disappear; you are still inwardly free with regard to God, "while binding outward actions" - 1 Cor 10:28-29.

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