Scriptures: Psalm 35: 9-14, Acts 24:16, 1 Peter 4:8
In Acts 24:16 the apostle Paul said: I have a goal. His goal was to maintain a clear conscience before God and everyone else. Paul knew a day was coming when he would stand before his maker and he wanted to handle offenses without injury. There is a process which provides a clear conscience, Paul said: "I exercise myself." It takes effort to stay free from offense.
Let's look at a story from the Bible. It has four characters: Amnon, Tamar, Absalom and David. Amnon was a man who raped his half sister. Tamar was a virgin royal princess who was devastated with shame. Absalom was Tamar's brother who wanted revenge, his concept of justisce. Lastly, David the king and their father who was full of regret.
Absalom has Amnon murdered; he felt the proper authority chose to do nothing about this event, so he avenged his sister. Absalom perceived that David was weak and this one offense led to many offenses. But David knew that God has men like Nathan, who was a prophet. Nathan had a message that made David face his own actions, and showed that God did not need Absalom. Absalom then began to question his father's ability to lead and tried to overthrow him, which eventually resulted in his own demise.
So how do we retain a clear conscience?
1) Recognize that we are hurt- pride often leads to major injury. We have to admit our condition and admit our pain.
2) Forgive offenders- Rejoice in God's salvation and remember His delieverance. "They rewarded me evil for good to the spoiling of my soul" a deep hurt is recognized. "But as for me" David humbled himself through fasting and prayed for his offenders: "when they were sick."
3) Ask God for fervent love- "And above all things have fervent love for one another, for love will cover a multitude of sins..." Only through God can we maintain a clear conscience.